Life’s Trade-Off’s to Getting the Life You Desire

This idea came about as I reviewed the first and most basic principle of Economics – People Face Trade Offs. This concept is the idea that to get something that we want, we must give up something else in return – this is our trade-off. When we think of our opportunity cost, it’s the cost of not choosing the best alternative for the things we value such as our time, health, career and money. 

In economics, Mankiw discusses that society has scarce resources; we are essentially unable to get everything we want. With that, we have to make the best decisions for ourselves which require us to compare the cost and benefits of the alternative course of action. I realized this is something we subconsciously apply in our every daily life! 

Photo by Carl Heyerdahl on Unsplash

Some common trade-offs include maybe going to graduate school and sacrificing a full salary position, taking on more financial responsibility, spending money on frivolous items when you could’ve put that money towards paying off your debt or investing, choosing to sleep in when you could’ve put that time into your goals, or the most common one for intimate relationships – ignoring red flags in a partner, which cost you your time and energy that could’ve been prioritized elsewhere. SHADEThese are all the little trade-offs of life, and the opportunity cost of the things we didn’t choose.

But on a serious note, what happens when we’re determining the cost and benefits of our life’s mission?

Intentional Trade-Off’s

Just like many of you, I have career aspirations – might I add very ambitious ones. As I progress, I’m learning the deeper meaning of intention. Understanding the intention in my life’s purpose and how it relates to my career and personal aspirational desires. With this mindfulness, I’ve also realized the importance of being intentional with my day to day trade-offs. 

Everything in life consist of a trade-off, followed by an opportunity cost. What that opportunity cost may look like can be vastly different for someone else with the same course of action. With blogging, school, working full-time, counseling, trainings, and developing my brand, I have to be very conscientious of my lifestyle trade-offs and be mindful of the potential opportunity cost of a particular decision. 

Purpose Planning

What are you willing to give up to have the life you keep pretending you want?

Elizabeth Gilbert

When you discover the purpose for YOUR life, your goals and passions become intertwined and reflects itself in your work. It’s no longer out of a sense of obligation but an opportunity to develop and progress, and it’s where you discover happiness. 

However, many of us have these insane goals and deep passions, but we don’t necessarily work on it every day. Why is that? For me, it was depending on my mind to keep track of all of my tasks, rather than writing and planning them out each week. During moments of ‘free time’, I opted to take a nap, hang out, or catch up on a show – not realizing what I’m truly sacrificing by engaging in that particular activity.  

I decided to take on a more intentional route, and truly sit down and determine how I plan to allocate my time in a way that will benefit my short term, and long term goals for my brand. 

Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash


How do you prioritize your time each day to meet your goals?

When speaking of prioritizing, think about how much time you’re dedicating to developing  your craft with the 24-hours we have in a day. Most of us would not be happy with the results – I sure wasn’t. Disappointed, I had to ask myself a very real question – why wasn’t I meeting my goals?

Scrolling on social media, hanging out with friends/dating, taking naps that last until the next morning, or just simply – procrastination. I had all of these aspirations, but I had absolutely nothing to show for it. The result of these distractions resulted in an opportunity cost that exceeded my benefit and left me unhappy.  


Planning allows you to be more strategic and visually aware of any small trade-offs we make on a daily basis. This way, we are able to determine and prioritize how our free time is being used. With my ever growing schedule, it is crucial for me to use a calendar and a planner as reference for my daily tasks. During ‘free time’ on my lunch breaks, train rides, and evenings, I take those opportunities to create content, study, read, or work on my brand.

It’s all about ensuring your time is accounted for and using it in a way that is the best alternative for you. 


Now that we’ve planned our schedules for the day or the upcoming week, it’s time to put those tasks into action and make that commitment every single day. Ask yourself:

How valuable is this to me?

Does x support the life I’m working to create?

Make the decision to follow through on those desires and determine whether those trade-offs are worth it to you. For some clarity, think what would be the result if I choose to do this, instead of that? 

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

The road to fulfilling your ultimate goals is an evolving negotiation of what you’re willing to let go of in order to get closer to what you want.


Know Your Trade-Offs (Intentional Decision-Making)

Every single time you say ‘yes’ to something, you are inadvertently saying ‘no’ to something else. Choose wisely.

Kimberly Haydn

With tradeoffs, come sacrifices – or lifestyle adjustments. You determine what these trade-offs mean to you. Along with planning and committing to doing the work every day, it’s also having to choose to do the work when it’s not convenient for you. The things we truly value out of life are never convenient – if they were, we wouldn’t appreciate the work it took to attain it. 

When it comes to developing our goals, it’s never truly convenient. We make time for it and prioritize it, but is it truly convenient when there’s something else we would rather be doing in that moment? Nonetheless, working on it is what makes our lives better.

It gives us the edge, the drive, and the momentum to KEEP going. 

It takes only one day to become an overnight success, but with that comes years of sacrifice, dedication, resilience and consistent effort.

The whole idea is to be accepting and embrace moments of inconvenience. Learn to be disciplined – in making the difficult choices, not making excuses, and being open to discomfort. It takes only one day to become an overnight success, but with that comes years of sacrifice, dedication, resilience and consistent effort.

Create positive habits that benefit you and lead you to a life of convenience and happiness. 

The best math you can learn is how to calculate the future cost of a current decision



Life is a series of trade-off’s – and for every trade-off, there’s an opportunity cost. For me, committing to work full-time on my brand while managing other full-time responsibilities, I am unable to spend the quality time I would like with those closest to me and spend as freely as I would like. In the same instance, I can spend a good amount of time with friends and feel like my time wasn’t apportioned the way I would’ve liked – resulting in an opportunity cost.

It’s all about finding a balance and ensuring that whatever your opportunity cost is, it’s worth it, and making sure that whatever decision you’re committing to, meets your long-term needs.