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Considering a Relationship or "Love" in Economic Terms - A Metaphor
Considering a Relationship in Economic Terms – a Metaphor
The Big Question: Are you making a wise investment in your relationship? Have interest levels dropped thereby decreasing the return on your investment? Is the relationship a short term or a long term concern?
In order to evaluate the wisdom of continuing in a relationship, it is helpful to remove emotion from calculations in order to assess the overall viability.
Value/Worth of the Investment
When investing in any venture, the overall value of the enterprise or product will need to be considered. The value or worth of the concern will vary according to the needs and purposes of the investor. Any investment should yield a return equal to or greater than the investment in order for it to be worth while.
Investment of Time/Money/Labour
Investment can take various forms: money, time or labour. This is an expense put forth on the part of the investor. However, if the interest level in the product, business or service is low, then the investor should reconsider the amount of investment put forth. Higher interest levels would encourage further investment, whereas low interest levels would discourage an increase in labour, time or money spent.
If the investor continues to expend resources when interest levels are low and the return on investment is small, then it follows that the resources are wasted. A wise investor would consider lowering the level of investment or even discontinuing involvement in a concern which is using valuable resources. Investment could be made in an alternative enterprise and thereby reduce waste. Profit and return could be made elsewhere.
Balanced Interest of All Parties
An important aspect of any viable relationship is the investment of all parties concerned. In order to achieve maximum productivity and therefore return, all parties ought to contribute equally. Contributions may take different forms depending on the resources of each party. These would need to be considered and evaluated by each party initially and periodically. If any party reduces their investment, then all things will not be equal; the ultimate value and worth of the investment will decrease.
Short Term/Long Term Investment
Return on the investment may increase gradually or quickly – either it will be a long term investment, or a short term investment. At any rate the final outcome should ultimately place the investor in a better or richer position. If short term, then perhaps the maximum return has already been yielded, in which case the relationship should cease or any further investment of resources will be wasteful. If long term, then serious consideration needs to be given to the continuing viability and net worth of the relationship. This is the difficulty of the economist – to be able to predict long term profitability and therefore the wisdom of continued investment.
Subtraction of Emotions – Assessment Made Easy
At any rate, considering a relationship in economic terms is beneficial in that it reduces the issues of the heart to the level of mathematical calculations and logic. Without the inclusion of emotions in the calculations, the overall benefits or lack thereof can be more easily assessed.