Archives for posts with tag: Choice

Most people are either short on time and long on money, or they’re short on money and long on time.

If you’re the former, it’s because you’re busy and / or important, and while you have plenty of disposable income you don’t have much time to dispose of it.

If you’re the latter, you’ve bags of time on your hands but your lack of money limits what you can do with that time. Both scenarios seem to me to be deeply ironic yet are classic examples of what life is like in the real world of limited resources.

The holy grail is of course to be long on time and long on money. I’m reliably informed that this is known as a financially comfortable and healthy retirement, a concept that feels very distant and remote to me. Then there’s winning the lottery or a similar kind of windfall, which is the short cut, at a distance and remoteness that tends to zero probability. And yet we play it, eh!

Unfortunately, I seem to be spending a good bit of my time in the lower quartile, the bottom left box of your management consultant’s two-by-two matrix. Yes, that’s the short on time, short on money variety. Dashing around the place developing business, creating projects, getting things off the ground, doing good things, for no money.

Yes, I’m happy, and lucky, I know. But a bit more of both wouldn’t go amiss, I promise.

You can’t change the past. You can only affect the future and enjoy the present. Is there any other way to work and live than to remember that every day of your life is not a dress rehearsal?

‘What if?’ looks forward. You have freedom, flexibility, options. Above all you have control.

‘If only’ looks back. If only I’d done that, we’d tried that, and so on. It’s in the past tense. It’s done. You can’t change it. You can’t control it. Sure, you can learn from it, but it’s unhealthy to dwell on it. Otherwise, you become bitter with the failures, and complacent with the successes.

In business, as in life, we should be make sure we’re dealing with the ‘what ifs’ and not the ‘if onlys’.

Beyond the level of your basic human needs – clean water, food, that kind of thing – monopolies tend to be bad for the citizen.

Control and flexibility in one’s life is about choices, so when do you don’t have choices, you tend to suffer.

Perhaps the title of this post should be Monopolies in Emerging Economies, or perhaps in Not Very Densely Populated Areas, because my example for this is the west of Ireland.

Where I live we have one choice of central heating fuel, and one choice of provider of that fuel. The houses in the area were plumbed for this type of energy, and the switching costs to another type of fuel are either prohibitively high or it’s not possible to switch because the infrastructure’s not here.

When this happens, you’re a hostage to the macro ebbs and flows of global energy costs which invariably get passed onto you when the flows are┬ánot in your favour, and are slow to come back to you when they are. Hate that :-(.