That’s how I felt when over the holidays I basically unplugged myself for 10 days.
I barely touched the computer and wrote a total of one email while I was away. Occasionally I checked FB, but for the better part of 10 days I was pretty much disconnected.
That’s part of the joy of getting away from things.
You leave whatever problems you have behind and just enjoy the now.
Last summer my family and I took a one-night trip to a small town just two hours away from the busy life of Osaka and it was a trip, both physically and mentally.
It’s hard to imagine just how different life is outside of the big cities, in Japan and Thailand, but let me tell you, it’s somewhat of a time warp.
Things just seemed to move slower there.
Over the Xmas holidays we chose to leave behind the big city life of Osaka for a whole 10 days this time in exchange for the more subdued lifestyle of a small Thailand town and it really does help put things in perspective.
This year was no exception as my mind was filled with so many new ideas and stories from new sources not available to me during my usual work week.
Naturally with it being XMas, I spent some time running around Toys ‘R’ Us trying to find a variety of things to delight my son on the 25th. Thankfully, all my hard work paid off.
Watching people dart in and out of shops, picking up last minute gifts for friends and loved ones, I sat down and thought about just what is worth spending my money on in today’s world.
Now I’m not talking big ticket items like a house or a car, but things we spend money on regularly throughout the year.
I came up with a list of 7 things and why.
Now let’s examine why each of these made the list.
First off, let’s take a look at clothing. One of the biggest mistakes people make is underestimating what clothes say about us to other people. As the saying goes, “You only get one chance to make a first impression,” and it’s never been more important than in our fast paced world.
We’re all busy. We’ve all got places to go and things to do. We do things at lightning speed and making snap judgments about people is one of them. That’s why clothes are so valuable. They’re not so much for us, but for other people. Our clothes should reflect the kind of person you want to be, whatever that may be. “Dress for success” is one expression any body interested in success should keep in mind when shopping.
Just what clothing is worth investing in? Well, I can only speak for men and my wife agreed that the big three items for men are jeans, shoes and suits.
Next on the list: travel.
As I already mentioned, getting away is something we all need from time to time to refresh the old batteries. Visiting new lands and talking to new people is always an experience. Not always good, but always valuable.
Electronics are something we can’t live without today.
The big three for me are tablets, digital cameras and computers, but here’s the thing. Be sure to invest in electronics that make your lives easier. The last thing we want in our lives is more stress and I’ve had more than my fair share of frustration in dealing with electronics. When it comes to computers, as I tell everyone, these days just get a Mac. As for tablets, as long as you stick with Apple, Samsung or Amazon you should be fine. Digital cameras, there are quite a few nice ones, but I recommend going with one of Ken Rockwell’s recommendations which you can find here.
Food for some people isn’t that important, for me, it’s everything. I love GOOD food. But I’m here to tell you to start thinking of food in a new light, think of it as fuel. Just as cars need clean gas to run well, so too do our bodies. After all, our success in life will be determined in no small part to our effort, so to ensure our body runs at optimum condition we need good quality food. That means BALANCE. Over the holidays I met not one but three men who told me they don’t eat vegetables. Now, I get it. I’ve been there, but let me tell you, the minute I started adding vegetables to my diet, my energy level went up a notch. And I have my wife to thank for that as she turns boring, tasteless vegetables into fine dining.
Since we’re on the topic of food. Why don’t we turn to food for thought, also known as books. It should come as no surprise to you if you’ve been reading this blog for some time now, but books are high on my list of success materials. True, they take more time than a movie and we have to invest time in thinking as well as checking new vocabulary, but a good book’s worth it’s weight in gold. Literally sometimes. Jim Rohn estimated that his copy of Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich, which cost him I believe 15 cents, helped make him in excess of $350,000. Now that’s a good investment, right?
Peace of mind is hard to put a price on, but our hobbies do help us release the stress we accumulate from our daily lives so don’t neglect your enjoyment. I have a few hobbies of varying costs, so if one month I don’t have as much money as I would like, I go with one of my cheaper hobbies. And if I may make a suggestion, I highly recommend photography. Thanks to digital cameras all it takes is one-time investment of between $250 and $1000 to have something that could last you a lifetime. As a bonus, think of all the memories you’ll capture and be able to share with your family and friends.
Finally we come to number 7 on my list. I suppose I’m biased, but the one thing that goes with you wherever you go is your knowledge. And when it comes to education, you definitely get what you pay for. Be willing to invest in good materials from good people, attend lectures from people who live and breath the material you’re interested in acquiring and find teachers who REALLY care. There is one exception to this as YouTube has given us access to some of the brightest minds out there for FREE and it’s where I suggest you start your search. Oh, and be sure to become an iSucceed Insider as I send out a short newsletter each week with various recommendations of success material worth getting.
So there you have it, 7 things that are worth spending your money on.
X-Mas may be over, but shopping isn’t something that takes time off.