The word investment breaks down into three key words In, Vest, and Ment
Some years ago I studied the word In. What I found caused me to engage life more intentionally. I want to share brief definitions. To be “in” means to be covered by, surrounded by something else, a place of power or influence.
As We take the time to really consider what this little two letter word means, We realize, that it is one of the most powerful words in the English language.
Are You In?
We are all familiar with the question “are you in?”
From playground to boardroom, this question is asked. The signing of a contract, the question “will you marry me?” do you pledge, solemnly swear?, are all forms of being asked the question, are you in? Are you committed to the fullest?
Virtually every group, or organization has this unspoken question at its core. In short we are asking; do you believe in me?
Our children subconsciously ask of us, expect of us everyday, for this question to be answered.
There is an expectation of commitment, an unspoken vow. This unspoken expectation comes from the second part of the word investment.
Vest a noun, is also a verb. It means to confer, bestow power or authority; to give or entrust; to put in the hands of.
We are given the place, and power to influence.
Our homes are a place of powerful influence. Our children are surrounded by, images, our words, and our actions every single day, when they are young. How we invest this power, this influence, is how we will confer upon the next generation, the ability to live.
In the place (the position) of influence, as parents, and as educators, we have the responsibility to improve ourselves, as much as is within our power, to ensure a better quality of life for our children. I’m not just speaking of financial, although that is a part of it. I am speaking more about our spiritual and emotional investment.
Even small steps, like getting your hair done, sending small gifts when your away, calling on the phone to say “hello, I love you” is important because our children see us everyday, and take their cues from us.
When our children were small, daddy would send gifts to them from the ports he came to (He was in the military). He recorded his voice reading a book, and the command he was under, recommend that he send t-shirts home that he wore, so that they could have “daddy” home in some form. (I don’t recommend the T-shirt), I smile as I say that, but I do recommend that we take small consistent steps towards the larger goal of investment towards our legacy.
Legacy is our responsibility
We should not leave the responsibility of our growth and development in other people’s hands. So, as we build our relationships, understand that we all have been given, opportunity, and entrusted with the life of another.
We have all been given the power of influence. No matter how small it seems. Our children need those small seeds of time, loving hugs, being read to at night, or video chats when we are away.
I would play the tapes daddy sent at night, when they were in bed, so they could listen. During the day they were involved in their own adventures, and I had mommy duties.
Some might think that it’s too much…what is meant to be will be.
This is the third part of investment.
Ment comes from the Latin word mentum akin to the Latin -men. One of the definitions as defined by Miriam Webster’s dictionary online is: (a)concrete result, object, or agent of a (specified) action.
To put it simply, our specific actions can bring about concrete results for, or against our children.
When I considered what I wanted for my children, I set about making specific choices that would influence the way they saw the world, and how they saw themselves in it. When they were young, I made choices they didn’t agree with. Choices, they say drove them crazy, but now they are grateful for. Some of the sacrifices I made, they did not notice, or respect until later. Some sacrifices they wish I hadn’t made.
Was I perfect? No, but I strived to be the best mom I could be. I still do. They will always be my children, and at each stage of our lives I want to be better. Just like financial investments take commitment and time to produce a return, spiritual and emotional investment also require time and commitment to grow. I am committed to my investment.
When all is said and done, my life finished, I want to be able to look back and relish the good of the In.Vest.Ment I made.
As quiet as it’s kept parents need some of these same things too.