“Too much month at the end of the money” – Jim Rohn

Have you ever gone to the store and grabbed a bunch of groceries, gone up to the checkout and found that you didn’t have enough money for it all? Or worse, found that you didn’t have any money left? That is a harsh way to go, leaving the grocery store empty-handed. Whose fault was it? Mine (unfortunately).

I got something with a free trial of 30 days. I didn’t realize that my time was up, too late to send it back. So then I had to start making payments on this thing for which I had no need. I had given them my debit card number so that they could conveniently charge my account every other month.

So even though I was keeping meticulous records of everything I was spending on I was always missing a surprising sum. That’s how I thought I had a good $50 left in my account and have it come up empty.

Finally I figured out what was going on and got it taken care of. I learned a valuable lesson, the “have now, pay later” mentality is bad news. What an expensive lesson.

Becoming Valuable

There is a law known as the law of the harvest. I cannot break that law. I can’t reap that which I haven’t sown. ¬†There is no shortcut through it. ¬†Any shortcut that exists leads straight to fraud or disappointment. How, then, am I going to sow one hundred thousand dollars worth of value, to be reaped within 600 days? Putting it this way kind of wet-blankets such ambition. But I know there is a way.

Apparently, at this point I’m not worth much to the marketplace. I have sold my time and effort for up to 10 dollars an hour (give or take) for a long time. Up ’til now I thought that was a pretty good deal. But that isn’t going to reach my goal. Not for a good ten years, assuming that my expenses were to stay the same for ten years and inflation didn’t exist.

How do I increase my value?

The standard method is to get an education, specialize in something, be the expert whose advice or know-how is in demand. Others build a business which fills a need so well that society pays it to exist.

I don’t know much of anything, and the only use society has for my existence is to take up space where convenient (a.k.a., manual labor).

But even if i don’t go out and build a successful business I can increase my value by giving greater value to the market with which I am familiar.

http://www.littlethingsmatter.com/blog/2010/02/04/whats-your-value-to-the-market/

So if I were to go back to working as a welder’s assistant I could increase my value by better anticipating the welder’s needs. I could talk to him more, making sure I am on board with the objectives, seeking out tasks that need doing and doing them without having to be asked. On the other hand one shouldn’t get ahead of things and get the welder in a bind. That would be the point of diminishing returns. I can see though how this mindset would make the job more engaging and exciting. You’re not just putting in time and looking busy, but anxiously engaging yourself to build your value and brand yourself as a hardworking, intuitive,and irreplaceable employee.

Though I’m afraid that by doing this I would only gain job security, instead of a raise. Which would be great if that were the aim. But jobs like that are a dime a dozen, I don’t need to worry too much about job security at that level.

Not to shortchange myself I don’t believe that I was ever really satisfied with a slipshod job in the first place, but I know that there is room for improvement. It can be hard to maintain the correct perspective.