Invest in Yourself to Build Yourself

Everyone talks about investing – investing in the stock market, in a new car, a new house – and whatever that investment might be, it usually comes with a decent price tag. A big area of investment that not many talk about is investing in yourself. Sure, lots of people joke about shopping sprees being a great way of “investing in yourself”, but that’s not exactly what I advocate.

How do you invest in yourself?

You are invaluable. You are a priceless asset to your own growth. There’s simply no better way to put it: if you avoid investing in yourself, you are avoiding tremendous growth. So how do you invest in yourself? I’ll throw you a bone…

Dress for success

You might be thinking that your thick pinstripe suit looks great with that wide tie and suspenders, but you are very wrong. Dressing yourself according to current fashion trends will only solidify your own self confidence and how others view you. Of course, what others think shouldn’t matter, but holy heck – you’re trying to build your own brand for Pete’s sake! Sadly, what people think of you does matter, at least to an extent.

Check out Combatant Gentlemen for fashion tips and some rather fantastic prices.

Be healthier

Living a healthier life style only enhances your own personal outlook and professional ability. I recently wrote an article about improving your brand by improving your health, and I suggest you check it out! It goes through the whole process by which you can kickstart your health and your brand.

Educate yourself

Websites such as Udemy, Code Academy, General Assembly, and other various online resources can help advance your knowledge and ultimately your career. It doesn’t hurt to dish out a few bucks for one of the top courses out there – and there’s always a discount opportunity awaiting you. There are also other free resources such as Khan Academy and various podcasters who offer a variety of knowledge (check out Entrepreneur on Fire and The Montoya Experiment).

For example, Udemy has a course by Mark Fidelman on Building a Personal Brand, and it’s only $39!

Hire a coach

But it doesn’t have to be formal! You can easily network with other entrepreneurs, some of whom may have had success in an area that you are trying to focus on, and they will be more than glad to lend a helping hand. Getting input from other entrepreneurs in your field is absolutely crucial.

Additionally, hiring a formal coach can run you for your money, but used efficiently and for a handful of goals, you get out what you put in.

Don’t be a cheapskate

Do you like that WordPress theme, but would rather keep looking for a free one than sink in the $19 – $39? Oh wait, it’s $49? And you don’t want to buy it? You must not be expecting to make more than $49 through your personal brand then. I should just stop writing this piece right now.

Or… you could make the decision to budget your branding money and use it to invest in the critical components for your business. Branding can definitely cost you a pretty penny, but these important pieces help build the basis for a successful business and a better brand. Some of these important pieces include (but are not limited to):

  • Website theme
  • Your brand logo
  • Professional headshots
  • Business cards

These are just some of my thoughts on investing in yourself, and using that investment to better both your business and your life. Your money matters, and so by putting it into your brand, you make your brand matter.


Best of luck!


Your Health and Your Brand

Many people assume that professional image is the only contributing factor to one’s personal brand. Granted, I have written about many different aspects which contribute to budding professionalism and aspiring entrepreneurs, but this is by far the most important contributing factor next to one’s public disposition.

Your health.

The key to having a healthy brand is having a healthy self. Making little improvements in your lifestyle can dramatically change how you perceive yourself and how others perceive your brand. Think about the following ways that you can live healthier, and see if they can work for you.


Think Positive

Research shows that positive attitude helps build a healthier immune system and boosts overall health. Your body believes what you think, so just as you have to convince others of your abilities, so too must you convince your body of itself.

Eat Better

Aiming for roughly 5 servings of vegetables or fruits each day leads to a reduction in harmful diseases, as well as helps prevent colds and the traditional “under the weather” feeling. Think of it like this: the less sick days that you take, the more time you have to work on your brand!

Eating Throughout the Day

Keeping your mind and your body constantly energized is an absolute necessity in promoting a healthier brand. An active self means an active approach to everything that you do, and in this case your brand. Taking the time to healthily snack during the day will instantly pay off.

Daily Exercise

Fun fact: daily exercise actually keeps you younger longer! Your body, that is. Daily exercise has shown to improve eyesight, normalize blood pressure, improve lean muscle, lower cholesterol, and improve bone density. Some studies conclude that even 10 minutes of general exercise can make all the difference.

A Good Day’s Relaxation

However you choose to interpret this, whether it be sleep, meditation or both, relaxation during the day or after a long time at the office will help keep you focused and less stressed. We all know how stressful building a business and a brand can be, so why not pick up on some meditative exercises or get to bed a little earlier?

Check out these 8 ways you can make meditation easy (and somewhat fun!). You can incorporate meditation into your daily routine – whether it be exercise or relaxation – and it will definitely make you into a better, calmer person.


I hope these tips can help you become a healthier entrepreneur & business owner.


Well, Mark Cuban Uses It.

Another one bites the dust
Another one bites the dust
And another one gone, and another one gone
Another one bites the dust


Those are some of the lyrics to Another One Bites the Dust. Great song by Queen; it’s got that rock ‘n’ roll feel with a bit of funk. Anyway, before my mind wanders and I begin to ramble, let’s talk about a great little app that I’ve been using for the past few months called CyberDust.

Well, Mark Cuban uses it.

And it’s not just a Mark Cuban bot – it’s the real cigar. See that wordplay there? God I apologize for my jokes. But what I definitely do not apologize for is making you aware of this amazing app. We all remember the NSA issue with Edward Snowden, where he blew the whistle on the fact that the National Security Agency was basically helicopter-parenting on steroids.

So what does a pressing social issue have to do with an app? Well, the concept of CyberDust is that any message you send will disappear, explode, implode, or bite the dust – essentially your conversation is not monitored in the slightest and no one else can know what you and the other person are talking about.

Cool, right? If you’re sold on the app already, I need not pitch any more of the features it offers. But if you’re still on the fence, then without further ado, the fantastic feature list and in what ways these features can be implemented to improve your personal brand.


1. CyberDust Blasting

With this unique blasting feature, CyberDust allows you to send a text, photo, or video to everyone on your list (or a more selective group if you wish). This has endless potential marketing possibilities, but just to sum up its incredible importance in advancing your personal brand: build relationships on the app, grow a following (similar to Twitter), and blast your blog posts or helpful advice to your CyberDust network!

2. Like Twitter, but Less Bots

Imagine a Twitter without all those junk followers – the auto-tweeters and robot-followers. CyberDust is just that. The app can be tied to your mobile number, and provides absolute privacy. This gives you the opportunity to connect with real people, with a better conversion rate when compared to Twitter. Sure you might have 1,000 followers on Twitter, but 100 followers on CyberDust is worth much more.

3. The Limitless Connections

As a huge networking addict (and of course, LinkedIn junkie), you have the ability to connect with virtually anyone from any industry. Heck, if you add Mark Cuban (+blogmaverick), you can have a 1:1 conversation with the man himself! Granted, he’s fairly busy, but he does his best to return your dust!


Of course you will have your own experience with CyberDust, and I’m sure it will benefit you in at least one way! Take a moment to download the app from either the App Store or Android Marketplace (search “CyberDust”) and add both myself (+ZacharyBarden) and Mark Cuban (+BlogMaverick).


Hope we can dust together soon!