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What is your biggest asset today?  This question is not exclusive to Physicians, it applies to most young professionals.  I ask this question of both new and established professionals throughout the country, and they almost never get the answer correct. 


The correct answer is your Human Capital.


Human capital is defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as “the skills the labor force possesses and is regarded as a resource or asset.” It encompasses the notion that people make an investment in themselves (e.g., education, training, health) and that this investment increases an individual’s productivity or value. 


How do you cash in on your human capital?  Your human capital is realized as financial capital over the course of your professional career.


Are you aware of the phrase “realized loss” or “realized gain” as it relates to investing?  Essentially what this means is that you didn’t “really” make or lose money until you close out your investment position. 


Same thing with your human capital.  Your human capital asset at the beginning of your career is the largest it is ever going to be, but if you get disabled and can’t work, or are forced to work in a reduced capacity, the value of the human capital drops.


So, is it worth protecting your human capital?


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