Home » Self Improvement » Motivational

Measure Your Life's ROI

Jun 9, 2008
I was having a conversation with my brothers this morning about past mistakes, and a thought popped in my mind that I thought I would share. Much of what we do here at my company is based around the idea of maximizing our clients' ROI, or return on investment. Our clients give us money, and we try to return that much money plus more.

But the concept of ROI is much more globally relevant than in just figuring out the value of financial transactions. Everything you do, say, and think has an ROI.

For instance, if you stay up late and get up in a tired, hurried state the next morning, then your ROI might be a chaotic, unorganized day. If you plan your day the day before and get a good night's sleep, the return on investment will be that you feel good and have a productive day.

Every moment in life is a choice, and there are usually numerous options. When you sit down for dinner in a restaurant, you have many choices for your beverages: beer, wine, cola, tea, or water, among many other choices. Over time, which one do you think will provide the highest return on investment? Hint: it ain't beer.

When it comes to the main course at this sit-down dinner, what is the return on investment of having a salad and lean meat with vegetables, versus the double cheeseburger with fries? This situation is tough because the return on your investment is not realized for months or years to come. Making the decision requires you to compare the short-term benefit of maximizing the pleasure you receive from the taste of the food versus the long-term effect of the food on your health and appearance. Here's a suggestion: think long-term. Make the decision today that will maximize your health, wealth, and appearance in the future.

And of course, the classic example: you can spend all your money, or you can set 10% of everything you make aside for saving and investing. It's easy to figure out your ROI on this one, because it can be measured in dollars. What if you had saved and invested 10% of everything you made last year? What if you had been doing that for the past ten years, earning a 20% annual return on your money? If you have been doing this, then I congratulate you. If not, the time to start is now.

You will also receive a greater return on investment from your mind if you train yourself to envision and expect positive outcomes. Be optimistic. In his famous book Psycho-Cybernetics, Maxwell Maltz explained that happiness is not a result of outcomes. The two are independent. So do not make the mistake of waiting for good things to happen to be happy. Be happy regardless, and expect things to go your way. Your ROI will be a better mindset and more happiness regardless of what happens in your life.

In conclusion, my advice to you is to estimate the ROI of every decision you make. No one can be perfect all the time, but if you make more choices that have a positive outcome than those that have negative consequences, you will get a much greater return on your life.
About the Author
Jerry Work is president of Work Media, LLC, http://workmedia.net, an SEO and ppc management firm based in Nashville.
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