Simon Terry

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Opportunity Cost

The value of your time is not what you are doing now. The value is what you could be doing.

In economics, the opportunity cost is the value of the best option forgone in making a choice. The option given up may well be more valuable than the option chosen.

We don’t consider opportunity cost of our time quite as often as we should. Time is scarce. Time comes only once and expires every minute. We either allocate time well or we miss out on the value it can create. Realising the value of time is about choices. If we don’t consider our options or don’t chose, we waste time.

The value of time need not be measured in money. Often the opportunity cost of our current great income is a far larger sense of satisfaction, happiness and better relationships with others in our lives.

The opportunity cost may also be our learning, growth and new options. We often discount the value of options and uncertainty. We can’t find out the uncertain value of an opportunity if we never try. The comedian Jim Carrey shared a little wisdom about options when he said ‘You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well do what you love’.

Ask yourself ‘what’s the best use of my time now?’ Make choices taking account of the opportunity cost of your time. Realise the value you might otherwise be missing.


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