new word “sabotrage” – the real price of thrift

opportunity cost cartoon

Watching my ten year old daughter spend her money is painful.  But not because she is naturally frivolous or awkwardly indecisive.  It’s not unusual to stand in the toy store aisle for fifteen minutes discussing the merits of Lego Friends’ Mia’s Bedroom vs. Stephanie’s Outdoor Bakery Set.   It’s because she gets a very important economic reality; that I don’t remember teaching her.

She understands that because she only has $40.00 to spend that a decision to buy Stephanie’s Outdoor Bakery Set is a decision not to buy Emma’s Horse Trailer Set or Heartlake Juice Bar or twenty other Lego Sets that she might like more than the one in her hand.  It is, in her words,  AG-O-NY!!

It seems like no matter how we spend our time or money there is another seemingly more productive option.  But sometimes our commitment to be efficient and thrifty can backfire; especially with our time.

In today’s businesses there is more pressure than ever to stay in the profit center.  Competition sprouts up overnight and what was profitable yesterday is now a commodity.  Sabotrage happens when we diversify ourselves when we need to protect our scarcest resource: concentration.

I guess the term opportunity cost deserves a mention.  We pay this cost with every decision.  And to quote Covey again, “We are a product of our choices.” suggests that, combined with opportunity cost, that success is a negative of our impulses.

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