At this time in our careers, as young professionals, it is most important to invest in ourselves. Before we can work for anyone, we have to know ourselves — from how we work, to who we are in general. So here is the who, what, when, where, why and how of investing in yourself.
Who: You! As aspiring PR professionals, we can’t help but be people pleasers. However, don’t forget to take time to focus on you. It will make your time in the workplace so much better because of the understanding and value you have for yourself. When making your daily to-do list, make sure there is plenty of time for you.
What: Investing in yourself simply means to take the time to grow and get to know yourself both professionally and personally. It is the process of learning who you are, what you stand for and how you want to present yourself. Investing in yourself is also the path to becoming your best you and eventually, the best you can be in the workplace.
When: Start now—it’s never too early! Again, investing in yourself is a process, meaning you will always need to take some time. Set goals and work on them for as long as you need to be as successful as possible. Every day, make sure you are doing all you can to be your best self, even if that means waking up 10 minutes earlier.
Where: Everywhere you go. Always strive to be and present your best self to the world. You never know who you will meet or how every moment will affect you. So be present, ready and reflective no matter where you are. Whether you are going to a grocery store or a conference, make sure you have that elevator speech ready.
Why: Investing in yourself is valuable because it not only will take you further as a professional but it will make you stand out. It is important to know yourself in order to apply that to every situation in life.
How: First, spend some quality time with yourself, often. Pay attention to how you feel and what’s important to you and take time to reflect. Second, personalize your brand, whether it be in how you dress, your social media or a super cool hobby. Finally, always network. This can be anytime, anywhere. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and show how much you have to offer.
So, now is the time to go all in with yourself. Figure out who you are and what gets you excited, as well as what makes you tick. Be patient, reflective and honest with yourself and just focus on you. You will be grateful you did later on and so will whoever you work for. Remember this is a journey and while you should start today, you should never stop investing in yourself.
Morgan Johnson is a junior at Samford University. She is double majoring in journalism and mass communications with a concentration in public relations and Spanish. Originally from Atlanta, Morgan wants to live in a big city, working in PR. She loves meeting new people, exploring new cities and trying new foods.