5 practical ways I’m investing in myself right now

5 practical ways I'm investing in myself right now | Modern Mrs Darcy

5 practical ways I'm investing in myself right now | Modern Mrs Darcy

Back in April, I noticed that people in my circles who were doing great work across diverse fields all had something in common: they purposefully spent money on things I wasn’t–like classes and conferences and coaching–so that they could get better at whatever it is they do.

Since then, I’ve loosened up the purse strings a little (emphasis on little), and have made a point to spend not only my time, but also my money, to get a little better at what I do.

I’m a frugal girl at heart, but recently I’ve tried to be smart and not stingy when it comes to spending actual cash on improving my work life. These small-dollar purchases were embarrassingly hard to make (and I agonized way too much about them), but I finally made them because I think in the long run, it’s worth it:

5 practical (and inexpensive) ways I’ve invested in myself lately:

planner pads

1. Planner pad. This is my third year using this planner, although this year I upsized from the executive 8 1/2 x 11 to the “professional” (and ginormous) 8 1/2 x 14. (I never have enough lines!) These planners are expensive, and it kills me to pay full-price plus shipping ($37: ouch), but these suit my natural organizational style better than anything else I’ve used.

Lara Casey Powersheets

2. PowerSheets. These interactive worksheets are for making plans/schemes/dreams happen. I just ordered mine sight unseen, so I can’t tell you all that much about them yet. I didn’t want to spend $35 for what’s basically a stack of photocopies … but I was super impressed with Lara Casey–as a person and a businesswoman–at Influence Conference, and I think working through these planning activities and maintenance strategies in 2014 will do my easily-distractible self some good.

Fix it Write. 31 Days of Cult Classics | Modern Mrs Darcy

3. Fix It Write. My handwriting has always bugged me (and my teachers, sadly), and when I wrote about this program for the cult classics series I decided I should finally get myself a copy and get to it. (I’m on Lesson 5, and I’ve already learned a few things–like I’ve been positioning my paper wrong my whole life!)


4. Verily magazine. This new magazine has gotten lots of buzz for their photoshop policy, but their mission and content fit Modern Mrs Darcy to a “t.” I’m thinking about doing more print journalism, so I just subscribed to check it out. (Got any topic ideas? Shoot ’em my way!)

5. Healthy living e-bundle. I can’t do my best work unless I’m taking good care of my body. (Believe me, I’ve tried.) A little nudge makes it a lot easier to spend money on myself, and a big discount like this does the trick.

Do you also have a hard time investing in yourself with cold, hard cash? What are some little things you’ve spent time or money on recently that have proved to be worthwhile? 

photo credit


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  1. Faigie says:

    I think I have always spent the most money on courses and workshops. From photography to internet marketing that has always been my weakness in spending. I was recently speaking with my adult daughters and they were commenting on how I don’t spend money on myself…I explained that I don’t feel deprived since I have spent tons on so many courses and workshops.

  2. Corrie Anne says:

    Wow. I really need #3!!! I’m a teacher!! And my handwriting is awful!! Just terrible! And writing on a whiteboard? Forget about it!!! These days, I’m mostly just writing in my students’ piano notebooks, but only because I haven’t found a way to go 100% digital!!

  3. Leigh Kramer says:

    I’m all about self-care so I don’t stress over spending money on myself. (Although, to be fair, I don’t have to account for others in my spending habits. But I am very good with my money!) I allot money so I can write at Crema, get new books/music, travel, and most importantly the last several months, see my counselor. In the past, I’ve gone to conferences, pursued certification, and researched all manner of topics. Getting to the bottom of my insomnia was huge!

    I’m fascinated by Verily Magazine. Definitely going to check it out.

    • Anne says:

      My weekly childcare dwarfs these expenses here! But that’s on autopilot (thank goodness!), these expenses listed here each represent individual decisions I had to make. And it’s the decisions that stress me out. 🙂

  4. Stacy M says:

    These are great! I love this post! Please don’t forget to update us on your thoughts on the Power Sheets. Actually, feel free to post on all of these things. 😉

  5. KatherineLn says:

    I didn’t even get past #1 before ordering one of those planners!! That is the best planner I have EVER seen, and I work for an office supply company. I’m pretty frugal too, but for only $2.50 / month that system is UNDER priced in my book. I have so many people come to my store looking for a planner that is actually useful and I’m going to be sending them to that site if they our stock doesn’t satisfy them.

    I’m SO glad I found your site, Anne! {Heard you on Beyond The To Do List podcast talking about your favorite “app” and your bulletin board system resonated with me so I had to come find out more about you!}

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