Life as an Investment - What is the Capital of Life?
The availability of capital does not guarantee you will make money. To make money from investment, you have to know when, where, and how to put in and take out your money. It is the same thing for life. With a reasonable roadmap of life made available at hand, let us move on with the project to fulfill our life by following it. As previously stated, we need capital to buy the tools to complete a project. Where and what is the capital for life? Again, it is a simple fact that the capital for life already comes with life at birth. However, somehow, we tend to overlook and ignore the readily available capital. Through life experience and with being a little attentive, it is often not difficult for every person to notice and learn the fact that if a person wants to successfully accomplish something in life, he/she has to be willing to put his/her mind to the task or to the subject and take actions timely. When the mental and physical activities for completing a task are being delivered, a certain amount of time will go with it and be consumed spontaneously and correspondingly. As you can see, the capital for life is that of one's personal unique spiritual and physical values, abilities, and capacities, plus time. The details of these three essential basic ingredients for any task will be described further in Section 2.15. After viewing the above elaboration, you should be able to understand and confirm what can be realistically available for you to utilize for unfolding your life. In order to vividly visualize the seriousness of life, let us use financial investments as an analogy to illustrate the importance of acting at a right time (when), with a right attitude (how), and at a right place (where) to invest the available capital (money) in order to make money from an investment. Now, let us assume there were 100 eager persons to conduct a financial investment. And each of them was provided with US$10,000 as capital. Then they were dispatched to start their activities for investing. Will everyone make money from investing this available capital — US$10,000? Of course, not. In fact, it has been known that more than 80% of wealth in our society is in the hands of less than 10%–20% of the people. This phenomenon indicates that most people will not make, preserve, and retain money. Why does this happen so commonly? Obviously, in order to make money from investment, one has to know how to put in and take out money at the right place and at the right time in the right way. To accomplish this, it is of no doubt that he/she needs to have the required knowledge and skills, which he may have accumulated over lifetime, to move the available capital at the right time and the right place in a right way. Furthermore, he must be willing to tolerate the potential inherent hassle along the course of acquiring the knowledge and skills and managing the limited amounts of money (US$10,000). Would each of these 100 people handles this limited amount of money in the same way? No, absolutely not. Some may use the available money to buy cigarettes, beer, luxurious goods, expensive meals, and so on for a “good” time. In a short time, this US$10,000 is gone, a “good” time disappears, and a pitiful life begins again. For others, calculated spending would be a predominant style of handling the limited amount of money. As a result, one takes a longer time to disperse the money. At end, US$10,000 is also gone. Some would combine the strategy of calculated spending and judicious investments. The outcome of handling the limited amount of money under this strategy would carry a person a long way financially. Potentially, one will have the needed money for living and also watching his/her investment grow. Based on the elaboration of the above live scenario, it's easy to realize that the availability of capital does not guarantee you to make money. The quest for money making is the knowledge and action of when, where, and how to invest money. For fulfilling a life, the spirit and practice of life management is not much different from that of financial investment. To successfully invest in life, first, one must have the needed capital. As discussed in the last few paragraphs, the capital you need for life investment is what you already have inside you; it is a person's unique mental and physical values, abilities, and capacities, plus time — 24 hours a day. That is all what you have and can use to fulfill your life. Although diversification has been a commonly recommended strategy for investment, over- diversification has its adverse effect on the return of investment chiefly by losing focus. After the blueprint and capital for life fulfillment are verified and made available, how can you start investing your life? Let us remember the fact that the path of life is always same for everyone to pass through and the capital of life is still always limited for everyone, no matter how smart you were born, how good the training you have received is, and how nice the computer you may possess is. With a little bit of common sense, a proper, controllable diversification in utilizing the capital of life is needed as much as that required for money investment. In today's living, an almost unlimited number of choices and activities out there are always waiting for and even constantly enticing you to participate. In facing such a wide range of choices for everything you need, how can you possibly participate in all the available activities around you? At this juncture of dilemma, how can you decide what you need to participate in fulfilling your life? In principle, it is definitely useful to ask yourself just what may be essential or optional for life before you act and consume your limited capital. What is essential? Any activities that can definitely and significantly affect your ability to fulfill your life especially in the long run, is considered as essential. What are they? Generally, anything that can nurture, maintain, and sustain mental and physical health (such as acquiring water and proper nutrition, conducting mental and physical exercises timely, obtaining a timely rest, and even participating in a real recreation) is essential for life. In reality, there are not many activities really required to fulfill our need for food and sex life. Conversely, any activities that would not make any difference or even worse to life can be classified as optional. For instance, smoking tobacco, drinking alcohol, using illegal drugs, and so on are clearly not essential for life at all. They not only do not enrich your strength of living now but also certainly make it worse sometimes down the road. It is sometimes difficult to draw a clear line between being essential and optional because of their differences in timing, location, and situation. However, with such a general concept of guideline in mind to differentiate being essential or optional, anyone would be able to allocate his/her limited resources for life fulfillment as described and promoted in Section 2.15. Following these things will enable a person to live under a self-controlled state of autonomy and independence. Naturally, such a person will have a stronger sense of self-control than ever.
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