Want Success? Invest in Yourself

Investing 1 hour a day into yourself is the single best way to guarantee that success that you desire.

Sam Williams
· 7 min read

Investing just 1 hour of time into yourself every day is the best change you can make to your life. You can do so much with it: master a new skill, destroy personal or professional goals, or create something incredible.

What to do with Your Hour

“Ask yourself if what you’re doing today is getting you closer to where you want to be tomorrow.” — Anonymous

There is no point carving out an hour of your day if you aren’t going to be using it well, but use it well and you can achieve great things!

There are 3 things I recommend investing this time into:

  • Developing your skills to get a better job
  • Achieve personal goals
  • Project work

Developing Your Skills

Want to get a better job, change industry or get a promotion? You can make it happen. I’ve written about how I Doubled my Salary in 5 Months and got an Amazing Job using this technique.

  1. Find adverts for the job you want to apply for in the future.
  2. List down the required skill and the bonus skills for each of the jobs. Try to get a list of 10–20 jobs.
  3. Count how many time each skill is required and listed as a bonus.
    e.g. Skill = required/bonus, project management software = 16/2, Photoshop = 2/7
  4. Order the skills based on score = required + bonus/2
  5. Go through the ordered list and write down what you need to do/learn to get to the level they want.
  6. Work your way through that list, using the best methods for developing that skill quickly but effectively.

When you’ve worked through two or three of the top skills, start applying for that new job or asking for that promotion.

Achieve Personal Goals

Whether your goal is to write a book, loose 5kg or a stone, become a chess master, or to read the 100 greatest novels of all time, an hour a day can make a huge difference.

With all of these goals, you should have a plan of what you need to do to complete the goal. These plans will vary from goal to goal and you’ll need to research those plans or get someone to create one for you.

Project Work

The ultimate dream is to have something that provides you a good income and makes you happy. You can use this time to make this a reality.

This will most likely be starting or building up a business. You could spend this time writing content for your blog, creating software to sell or any other work related to your business. It’s amazing what you can do with 365 hours.

Again planning is key to making the most of the time. Know what you’re going to be working on tomorrow. This cuts out the time wasted on choosing what to do and means you hit the ground running.

How to find that hour

A lot of people say that they don’t have a spare hour to invest in themselves. There is a technique I use to claim an hour of quite, un-disrupted time every day:

Morning Routine

Creating a morning routine is a great way to make sure that you get that hour of time to invest in yourself. Here is mine:

6:00–6:10: Get up, drink a glass of water, make my bed, go to the toilet
6:10–6:15: 3 sets of 15 press ups
6:15–6:45: Breakfast and listen to a Blinkist then do my teeth
6:45–6:55: Meditate and Energise
6:55–7:00: Daily Goals
7:00–8:00: 1 hour to invest in myself
8:00–8:15: Check emails, Facebook, Twitter and Medium
8:15 onwards: Commute and Work

Having this structured routine makes everything easier. Having 15 minutes blocked out for emails and social media AFTER work stops me from wasting my whole morning scrolling through feeds or reading unimportant emails.

Your morning is for being productive!

Getting Up at 6am

My morning routine relies on me getting up at 6am. Some people will already get up at 6 whilst others will struggle to get out of bed by 8.

I used to be the latter but I found a few things make it so much easier.

  1. Go to bed on time — I go to bed at 9:30 every night, aiming to sleep from 10pm — 6am. A total of 8 hours.
  2. Put your alarm on the other side of the room — This means that you have to get out of bed to turn it off. Escaping the warmth of bed used to be the hardest part for me.
  3. Having something to do — having my morning routine as well as knowing what I’m going to be working on for that hour motivates me to get up. Getting up for the sake of it is a waste of willpower.

Why the Morning

I find that hour to invest in my self in the morning, before work for a few key reasons:

  1. When I come home from work, I found I was tired and didn’t have the motivation to do much more than watch TV or browse Facebook.
  2. You are mentally refreshed — after sleep you’re brain has just had a long period of rest. This means your prefrontal cortex (bit that does the complex thinking) is at it’s maximum energy, allowing you to do great work.
  3. Less things can get in your way of your time — The only things I have to do are get up, get ready and have breakfast. If I did it after work I could be asked to stay late, get stuck in traffic, or have something else on.
  4. It’s quieter — most people aren’t up yet so you probably won’t be interrupted by phone calls. If live with your family then most of the house probably are awake yet.

Other Options for Finding that Hour

Some people will hate the idea of getting up early or think they work better in the evening. I encourage you to try the morning routine but here are some other ways to find that hour:

  • After Dinner — Have your dinner, clear up and then take yourself away for an hour.
  • Dedicated evening hour — Have an hour every evening where you do your personal work. It could be 9pm-10pm or 10:15–11:15 but you need to make sure you’re consistent about it. If you make it variable then you give yourself the option to push it back until it’s 1am and you need to go to bed.
  • Straight after work — Whether you’re allowed to stay in the office for an extra hour or you do it as soon as you get home, this can work depending on your working hours.
  • Lunch time — If you have flexible hours or an understanding boss, ask for 1.5 hours for lunch. Spend the first hour investing in yourself then the last 30 minutes actually having your lunch.

This Isn’t Easy

Investing an hour in yourself every day isn’t as easy as it sounds. Getting up early, not hitting that snooze button, sitting down and doing the work, not scrolling through Facebook and Twitter: these are all challenges you’ll have to overcome daily.

“Never give up. Today is hard, tomorrow will be worse, but the day after tomorrow will be sunshine.” — Jack Ma

Getting through those first few days and the first week is hard, very hard. 99% of people will give up at this point. Get through the start and it becomes a habit and it gradually becomes easier.

Now you are in the elite who will succeed through investing in themselves. You’ll be learning new things, advancing in your career and conquering your goals.

Bonus Tips

  • Track the days in a habit tracker. It’s amazingly motivating seeing that chain of 20 days in a row, making you even more likely to carry on.
  • Find somewhere quite to spend your hour, a home office is ideal but a zoned off area is also good. Try to have it away from distractions or anything that could stop you from investing that time properly.
  • Tell other people that your hour is exactly that- YOUR HOUR! Ask them to wait until after if they need anything from you. This helps reduce interruptions.

Summary

With an hour invested in yourself every day you can achieve great things. You can get an amazing new job, achieve your personal goals and master countless talents.

Use plans to make sure that you are using the time as well as possible.

Use a morning routine to create that hour of investment time and make it as easy as possible. Utilise the benefits of an energised brain and quiet time to make the most of your time.


Thanks for reading this article and I hope you found it helpful.

Complete Coding

Coding tips, tricks and tutorials

Sam Williams

Written by

I'm a software developer currently building Chat Bots for E-Commerce companies. Outside of coding I love to go Rock Climbing and Traveling.

Complete Coding

Coding tips, tricks and tutorials

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