I started a long walk with my longtime, best friend. I am at the age now that I realize the company we keep is important because this helps become accountable for ourselves. The people we choose to have in our lives are important because they have a direct effect on how we act, perform, or choose to improve. I passed the junction in my life where I thought differently about the crowds and popular opinions and I’ve grown beyond the times when I was lonely, even in crowds, and now I have come to the realization that life alone is tough enough; and since I believe this to be true, then it I also believe it is true that the company we keep is crucial.
Every so often, I pass an old familiar face in the city. Mind you, when I explain an old familiar face; I mean someone that I used to spend time with in my social circles. It is odd how we pass each other, as if to be total strangers now —but I don’t mind this so much. This only proves to me that they were always strangers. As I see it; it is true that age changes us. So does awareness. So does life and the outcomes we face on a daily basis.
Our definitions of who we were then and who we are now are not always rock solid. I believe my path has changed several times. So has my personality. So has my opinion. More importantly, so have I.
At some point, we grow to a level of awareness that teaches us where to place our attention. And put simply, I just don’t want to waste my time on anything unimportant anymore.
I don’t want to waste time thinking about the imaginary road blocks in front of me or consider the ways I will have to negotiate life’s obstacles. I have spent decades, literally worried about every obstacle imaginable, but to no avail and with nothing to show for my concern; I have erred on the side of caution, I have missed out on opportunities as a result of overly concerned insecurities, fearing loss, fearing rejection, fearing above all, that I might fail and feel that sense of foolishness. Deep down, I used to think this way. However, I never realized this was a direct result of the company I chose to keep.
The people in our life nurture us in one way or another. They nurture our positive reflections and encourage us to be better or they nurture our fears, they feed our insecurities and they nurture our thinking patterns which would otherwise keep us from going forward.
I believe we are social creatures. I believe in behavioral economics which deals with the production, distribution, and the consumption of information and communication. I believe we all have our own proof system, which at times, can be faulty because of the feeling machine and the emotions we feel. I think we all come with our own personal biases; we have emotional biases, spiritual biases, that stem from our human misjudgments.
This was the topic of my long walk with my longtime, best friend. We talked about the Sunk Cost Fallacy about financial investors and how people will work harder on a failing cause instead of cutting their losses and accepting the truth, which is the investment didn’t work.
Say for example, the sunk cost of a business is $10 but the investment is not bringing in any return and in order to make that $10 you need to invest more. Rather than see this as unfit, there are times when we invest more because, put simply, we don’t want to fail (or be wrong) or look foolish.
I see this as a common thing in our personal lives. I can see how I’ve invested on several things in my life, which proved to be doing poorly; however, instead of accepting the truth, I gave more because I did not want to face the facts of emotional or personal bankruptcy.
I remember after The Old Man passed, my Mother put more money into the business because to her, if the business failed, it would mean another death. Rather than liquidate the business; Mom invested more. And then she invested more again. She invested even more into the business until eventually the business took everything from her in both a financial and emotional sense.
At some point, relationships come to the point of diminishing returns. You put in more than you get back. But rather than fail, sometimes we invest more because we don’t want to fail. We don’t want to seem foolish, and often times, we invest more because we don’t want to believe we foolishly ignored the warning signs we noticed along the way.
Everything we do in life is an investment. Everyone we meet in our life is an asset in some way, shape, or form. At this point in my life, I want to interact with my assets as best as I can because 1.) I don’t want to lose what I have and 2.) I don’t want to be anyone’ s sunk cost investment and be considered as a loss to the people I need most