Everyone is invested in something

Everyone is invested in something cartoon

I became interested in investing through my realisation that, no matter how ignorant I am towards the subject, throughout my life, being invested in something is going to be inevitable, and that I should probably start taking note of the how, the why and the where.

Not interested in investing? Unfortunately you probably already are invested and most definitely should be interested. Your financial future could be determined by the level of interest you take in the subject, especially if you still have considerable time on your side.

Pensions

Whether you’re a PAYE employee or self-employed worker contributing to a SIPP (self invested personal pension), you are undoubtedly invested in the stock market in some form or another.

Retirement is not a right; it is a state of financial comfort allowing you to never work again after a certain age. But getting to this point takes time, commitment and a little understanding on how the process works.

If your pension/s is going to be the thing that allows you to live a full life in your twilight years, then why would you not be interested in how it’s going to do that?

Your pension can be composed of all sorts of investment options whether that’s funds, individual shares, bonds, REITS or cash (there are many other options on top of these).

Understanding these terms and which ones of these your pension is comprised of is key to making the most out of your money that you have set aside to provide for you in later life.

Small differences now (in your 20s and 30s…hell even your 40s and 50s) can make a huge difference when you come to withdrawing it years down the line. This can be something simple like transferring you pension to a provider that charges a lower fee (compounding fees over a long time are just as impactful as compound interest over time…watch out!), or moving more of your pension out of cash and into an investment vehicle that is going to see your money grow.

So become interested; ask your HR department who your pension provider is and how to log into your account. Make sure you’re maximising the free money that is employer contributions (it is the law that they have to offer at least something unless you have opted out).

After all, this is YOUR money. If you have never taken the time to look into your pension, and have worked somewhere for a considerable time, you may be pleasantly surprised at just how much you have amassed.

Education   

It’s not just our pensions we invest in. Many other aspects of our life require the time and patience that could fall under the category of being an investment.

Education is something every one of us has experienced and something that can be considered one of the most important investments we will make.

Whether that’s choosing certain subjects you’re not just interested in but believe will enhance your career prospects, or whether to take on an apprenticeship or apply for university, you can potentially be making huge educational investment decisions at a very early stage or your life.

It’s not just the big decisions you make that can affect your future. Along your journey through education you will have a number of opportunities to enhance your experiences and add another string to your bow. This could be taking an additional course out of hours at university or getting involved in some voluntary capacity with a charity – everything adds to the portfolio of you.

Relationships

Investing in your relationships works a lot like your money within the market; you will inevitably have to give something in order to get something out of it, whether that’s fees or riding out the down turns, you ultimately hope to slowly see progress and growth.

It may be a crude way of viewing something that’s supposed to be a natural connection between individuals, but the concepts can be applied just as effectively.

You can’t develop relationships with someone without taking at least some risk. You are, therefore, investing your time, and money in the hope that you will come to the point where you have established and grown a meaningful and significant connection with someone. Without this initial investment, it becomes incredibly difficult to get to this point.

Business ownership

Without investment, a business cannot grow. When just starting off, any revenue made from sales or services related to a business must be reinvested in areas that allow a business to move forward.

Again, this comes with an element of risk…will it continue to grow? Is the money being invested in the right areas? But without this risk you will not reap the rewards.

Netflix

We’ve all done it. Binged our way through a box set, only to look up from our TVs and realise two days have passed, you haven’t had a shower and you have created your own customer buttock crater in your sofa.

You might not think it an investment, but it is…of sorts.

You’ve employed your time and interests into a particular show, ploughed through the exciting and engaging episodes and held strong through the boring ones that make you realise how they ever got past post-production.

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With all these forms of investment, risk doesn’t have to be a scary thing. If embraced and understood, risk should be viewed as potential and not this scary ominous entity, hidden in the shadows that must be avoided at all costs.

You take risks in every aspect of your life. Hell even crossing the road or commuting to work comes with some element of risk.

We are willing to fly in metal cylinders filled with explosive jet fuel to get to far off places thousands of feet in the air; prepared to ride the tallest and fastest rollercoasters with just a metal bar across your lap to stop you falling out. Yet we are quick to disregard the financial markets for fear of our money disappearing in an instant (which is highly unlikely if invested efficiently).

So take some time to reflect in what you are currently invested in. Are you effectively allocating your time and resources to the areas most important to you?

And finally, understand your pension. I’ll say it again, it is YOUR money; it will have a monumental effect on your quality of life in your later years. Get interested; get investing.

4 thoughts on “Everyone is invested in something

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