How much do you want it? Sacrifice vs. Success for your Business or Career

It is usually said that everything comes at a price, true? I may not totally agree with this statement, but there is a lot of truth to it. Whether in monetary terms, in form of a relationship or your time, there is always most likely an opportunity cost to desired goals. There is a saying that ‘you reap what you sow’, you cannot sow sunflower seeds, and harvest (or reap) coconuts.

The sacrifices you make or seeds you sow today, either in form of time with family, friends or for leisure activities; the temporal pleasures we give up to pursue something else; or giving up on short term profits, can all go a long way to achieving your desired goals. The economic terminology for sacrificing is ‘opportunity cost’, the cost of what we are willing to forgo for the choices we make.

Only you can decide whether the opportunity cost of achieving your dreams and successes is worth. How much do you want that success, career, business or weight loss? And what price you willing to pay for it?

Take for instance, you may be considering further education, perhaps Masters, PhD or short courses in order to take your career or business to the desired level. While this could be a worthwhile venture, stop and consider what the sacrifice(s) will be; time to attend classes, prepare assignments and study for exams, and of course the financial investment. As someone who pursued an MBA, I get friends share with me they want to do one as well, and most times expect me to encourage them to go ahead, instead I ask the question “Why”. They are usually taken aback thinking what a silly question, after all, I myself have one, so why not. But having done one, and being aware of the sacrifices and struggles, seeing colleagues struggle and some drop out, this is a very valid question.

Other areas of sacrifice could be for the purpose of making financial investments future, which could mean sacrificing a holiday, a brand new car, eating out weekly and the list goes on. What about your social life? I dare say very few people at the top, if any, got there without sometimes working very long hours, be it in the corporate world or their own businesses. Success can come at a price, which could mean forfeiting time with friends, playing with the kids after work or having a social life, but usually only for a period of time. You can’t eat your cake and have it, unfortunately, something has to give. But at the same time, wise choices have to be made to have the right work-life balance.

All in all, there is seed time and harvest. A time to make sacrifices and a time to reap the harvest of your labour, it will not always be about sacrificing (sowing); a time will come where you reap the fruits of your labour and sacrifice. However, before you make that investment, sacrifice your time, or give up on something, consider if it is worth the price.