Defining Your WHY

[econ rules the world]

Guest Post by Dr. Abdullah Al-Bahrani

If you now me, it’s not hard to tell that I am an Economist. Economics is the way I think, it influences the way I talk, the way I process my decisions, and the way I see the world. Thinking like an Economist has helped me succeed and get to where I am today.

Picture taken at the Cincinnati Nature Center.  October 15th of 2016

Picture taken at the Cincinnati Nature Center.  October 15th of 2016

One of the basic economic ideas is that rational humans prefer more to less; better quality to inferior. If something is a “good” we want more of it, and if it’s a “bad” we want less of it.

Think about your life, does wanting more apply to you? What do you want more of? You probably can identify several areas in your life that can benefit from more of something. What economics doesn't do well, and humans in general, is identify why we want more and that’s why we often fail to reach our goals.  

What basic economics (intro level classes) does not make clear is that to get more you need to exert effort. Want a new job? You have to search. Want to build wealth? You will have to save more, you either make more money, spend less, or both. Want to travel the world? You will need time and money. Want to lose weight? You will have to work hard for it. We all want something and all of it requires effort. What makes the pursuit of more even more difficult is that there is often a lag between the work you put in and when you receive the reward of your effort.  

It is during this time when people fail, give up, or get distracted. This is what usually happens to New Year’s resolutions. How many of yours have you kept? You set the goal and when the process became difficult you forgot why you you started or maybe never knew the why to begin with. 

So next time you set a goal, dig a little deeper and identify why you want to accomplish it. Want to save more money? Ask yourself, why? What will you do with the money? Want to lose weight? Gain muscle? Workout with a group? Alone? Ask yourself, why? When you find your “why”, write it somewhere, everywhere. Remind yourself of why you are doing it. Defining the “why” will help you reach your goal. It will make the effort worth while.

If you are wondering, my “why” has always been to help others reach their goals. To speak like an economist, I receive a lot of utility from seeing others accomplish their goals. It is why I am an educator, and it is the reason that we started The Academy.

Whats your next goal? Whats your why?

Resources to help you explore your WHY. 

Business development 

Tips to find your why

Ted Talk: Simon Sinek- How great leaders inspire action


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