Why You Should Build Up

Last updated: November 4, 2018

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Building up is not easy. It requires a lot of hard work, patience, and resilience to failure. None of these are pleasant. But why should we nevertheless do it?

We all face adversities in life, and we need to pay the price of overcoming them. The cost can be many things: having to go through something unpleasant, having to work extra hours, or pay money. We usually have two choices: fight or flight. If you choose flight, i.e., be lazy, you get the instant gratification of not having to do anything right now and carrying on with your life, ignoring the issue. But then later it catches up with you, and you probably have to pay even a bigger price: having to do something even more unpleasant, accumulated work, or late fees. Instead, if you choose to fight, i.e., to work hard now, you pay the price now. But later you get to reap the benefits of the hard work: the job is done, bills are paid. You can move along with your life with added liberty you have from not having to do anything. So it looks like you're going to pay the price either way, and there's no difference. But there's, in fact, a considerable difference, and it can be explained with basic economic theory.

Price of money right now is not the same as money in the future. Getting $100 now is worth more than getting $100 in a year, due to the time value of money. Simply put, if you get $100 now, you can put it in a savings account, and in a year you'll have around $105. The same applies work you do now vs. work you do in the future. When you do something later or don't do it at all, there's an accumulated interest, and you'll have to suffer more in the future. However, saving money now accumulates and compounds interest, and makes you richer in the future.

When it comes to building up, you also have two options. One option is you work hard and build up now, and later you enjoy the benefits. Another option is to be lazy now, not do anything, and then suffer the consequences of laziness. To put in another way, it's something negative now vs. something negative in the future vs. something neutral now and something positive in the future. Either way, there's suffering. However, if you build up, there's something positive, so overall it's a better deal. Each adversity you face in life, whether it has to do with career or relationships, you're always better off doing something about it and building up!

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