Man learning

By Brad Sugars

Invest In Yourself

Huge increases in your success do not always require huge increases in terms of time, effort or money. 

Brian Tracy uses a great analogy to make this point. In a horse race, the first place horse might earn $100,000 while the second-place horse might earn $50,000. The first horse got twice the money not because it ran twice as fast as the competition; it only had to be a nose ahead.

So what can you do personally to improve your results? The answer is simple – invest in learning and skills-development. We are all familiar with the phrase, 'knowledge is power', but it also translates to earnings or income. And it doesn’t require a lot of time or money; just a commitment to personal growth and passion for success.

Consider the fact that the average person reads 12 books in a lifetime. While this is a sad statistic, it clearly demonstrates an opportunity! According to Dr. Donald E. Wetmore, if the average person read for just 15 minutes per day, he would read 12 books per year and well over 600 books in his lifetime. Talk about a competitive advantage that can be gained by utilizing those just 15 minutes per day! 

If you spend a lot of time on the road, invest in audio books and turn your car into a learning center. Today, most of the best-selling business, sales and leadership books are available on compact discs. You can repeatedly listen to the same CDs. I’m always finding new ideas from audio books I’ve listened to previously.

Want to maximize your learning while leveraging your time? Here are a few tips you might want to consider. First, invest in an executive book-summary subscription (

The summary provides a recap and key ideas contained in a book – without reading the entire book. Busy executives and professionals use these to stay abreast with changes, and for developing new ideas; you can too! Second, join a book club; discuss and learn. Some professional organizations offer these as a member benefit. 

Do you learn more effectively with the help of others? If so, attend interactive workshops and seminars to improve knowledge gaps, or simply to get new ideas. If you can take away and implement just one new idea in your business, you’ll find that the results will amaze you. There are many local and affordable workshops available, and many require less than three hours of your time. 

Finally, make an effort to meet and build relationships with other successful and motivated business owners, inside and outside your own industry. Sharing information is a great way for the both of you to learn and improve your businesses. Whether you do this with a group, or simply go have a cup of coffee with someone; include spending time with other successful executives a vital part of your schedule.

A word of caution here; surround yourself with owners who have a similar passion for success. Avoid those who constantly play the role of a victim -- they will simply pull you down.

In conclusion, learning new ideas and ways to do things better is one of the keys to success. But at the end of the day, you must take action or do something with what you’ve learned, in order to impact results.

I’ll leave you with this quote - The only difference between YOUR income now and your income in five years will be the people you meet, the books (or CD’s) you read and how YOU apply it all". So start investing in yourself and you too will reap the rewards.

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