Whether Something Is Worth It

That course, the relationship, or the floor cleaner. How do you decide whether something is “worth it” or not?

By the way, this question isn’t applicable to just items at malls but also to ideas and opinions.

There must be a commonality, a universal set of beliefs, based on which we decide the value of things in our life or work.  

Why does it matter?

Whenever we’re required to invest our resources into something, we’re likely to assess the value we get.

But how do we assess that value? That one reason alone makes it a question worth pondering.

I want to share some raw and abstract thoughts about it – with a philosophical approach rather than a factual one.

Here’s what I think

Since I’m not going into the specifics – here’s what I think happens usually.

  1. We calculate the outcomes (benefits, specifically) before even engaging in anything.
  2. We have limited resources – like cash and attention. So, we rethink before committing ourselves to anything.
  3. What did I put in and what am I left with? We often don’t care about the exact stuff that we deal with but the bigger picture.
  4. How we feel after getting stuff because we’re emotional beings who don’t mind making irrational decisions.
  5. Potential for growth in the future – as we often desire value that rises as time passes.
  6. The impact caused on our conditions, and whether our choices would leave us better or worse than we are.
  7. The advantage over other alternatives and options at any given time.

When it comes to me, whenever I think whether something’s worth it or not … then maybe I’m already calculating all that stuff intuitively.

Also, while it’s almost impractical to even ask this question without a context – that’s what makes it interesting in a way.

I’m looking at things in my room, wondering how we might have assessed their value at some point, and then concluded that they were worth it.

The wide gap between “it’s worth it” and “it’s not worth it” is damn interesting.