Delaying for the future.

Frederick Law Olmsted designed no feature of Central Park to be realized in less than 40 years. He visualized what all the plants would look like as they matured, and as the trees aged. He knew that a park that looked right today, wouldn’t look right in the future. It would look overgrown, and the trees would be too big.

Our lives, and our businesses can be a bit like this. More than not, we’re seeking for the immediate, not the future. So we spend too much on a house because we want it to be our forever home, even though we can’t fill it with furniture today. Or we spend too little on a house that doesn’t fit our lives because we are trying to optimize our investments for the future. In both cases, we’re delaying for the future.

In the first case, we’re delaying being able to furnish, and we’re fine because in due time we’ll fill in the spaces.

In the second case, we’re delaying for the future, spending less and investing more now, so a more amazing house can be purchased later.

Is there a proper balance? Not really, it’s an individual choice.

Many people want to take decisions like this and think there is a proper way to optimize, but there isn’t. In the history of the world, every single human to exist has had their own way of “weighting” the correct choices about these sorts of things, and there has been no objective optimum found.

The world is dynamic, and while it’s true, something always has to be delayed for the future, picking what that is tends to define a significant part of who we are.

Make sure you understand the ramifications whichever way you choose, then proceed with courage after that.