Why You Should Track Your Self-Development Spend

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I have a confession. I am guilty of misappropriating funds.  No, I am not about to admit that I have been participating in some Enron-style scheme that’s cheated strangers out of millions of dollars. The victim of my transgression is someone I am much more familiar with, myself.  So what was my crime? Spending funds that could have been dedicated to my personal and professional development on wasteful purchases instead.    

I will be honest; when it came to my self-development, I would always try to find a free alternative. I would not purchase a service, program, or experience that would be beneficial to my development. However, I would then turn around and drop that same amount of money at a restaurant, on a date, or on something frivolous. Once I became aware of this tendency, I decided to keep track of how much money I spent on my development.  

By becoming aware of my personal-development spend has been a fantastic experience. It has made me more intentional about my self-development and has caused me to become mindful of my tendency to shortchange my growth.  Just last week I was considering purchasing Grammarly. I had recently been invited to become a Forbes contributor and planned to post content regularly on my blog in 2018. Plus I will be starting my dissertation process this spring, and write all the time for work.  With all these different writing-related goals on the horizon purchasing Grammarly made perfect sense. However, I was hesitant to do so because it was $59 for the quarterly subscription.   Then I thought to myself, “Didn’t you just spend $100 at Ja Grill (one of my favorite restaurants) yesterday without even batting an eye?”  That realization caused me to buy the annual subscription for Grammarly!

Since I have started tracking my Self-Development Spend in December,  I have already spent $450.00 on personal and professional development activities! These are funds that I probably would have spent regardless, but instead of paying for frivolous things I am instead spending this money on items that have a return on investment for my development. Are you guilty of misappropriating funds that should be used toward your self-development? If so, I highly suggest you try this approach!