I may address this in more detail further along (under “expenditure represents value”), but it’s important to appreciate what our excess says about us. I give it as my opinion that how we spend our excess says more about our values/priorities than how we spend our function’s resources.
Whatever we categorise as ‘function’ by default/the very nature of categorizing it as such, is that we don’t consider its expenditure to be completely at our discretion. We feel a duty or responsibility to use it to fuel the machine that maintains our loved ones/ourself. By way of ‘intentions’, it’s a bit of a muddy mix of variables and therefore, is less of our own personal ‘choice’.
Our excess however, again simply by categorizing it as such, has been determined to be spent however we want without serious cost to our life/existence. Whatever we want to spend it on, completely our choice. For this reason, how it’s spent can be a superior indicator of our intentions, life choices and priorities. ‘Completely our choice’ also means ‘completely our accountability’.
When we think about our excess time, money, contacts, opportunities etc. how much of it are we currently wasting vs utilised/investing? How much is spent on gratification Vs edification?
Consider for a moment that most of us tend to waste our excess because, again, by it’s nature, it’s considered ‘unneeded’. However if excess’s expenditure is an accurate measuring stick for our values/priorities, and we’re wasting the majority of our excess via gratification, are we not evidencing to ourselves/our world that we prioritise self-destruction over self-development?
Does wasting most of our surplus not indicate that we prioritise gratification: the insatiable self-consumption?
This question is especially important for any of us who are pursuing ‘more‘ (which, yes, is basically all of us). If the current evidence suggests that our priority is gratification/self-destruction, what’s the honest expectation when it comes to increasing our excess..? Can we honestly expect that it wouldn’t cause more harm than good? That we’ll magically reprioritise ourselves and our appetite for gratification will magically disappear? I don’t think that would be a wise assumption. However if the majority expenditure of our current excess resources evidenced we prioritised edification, would it not be self-evident and logical that such a person would likely achieve more good than bad by increasing their resources/excess?
Perhaps it’s for this reason the adage ‘line upon line’ is so important. There’s a learning curve required with each step, in order to continually ensure our ever-increasing load is managed effectively and achieving more good than bad. Those whose lives are spent evidencing we’ll gratify more than we’ll edify, are a fire hazard when it comes to pouring more fuel. Giving us more is going to be dangerous for everyone in our world.
Edifying value of output ratio
Once you’ve got a good look at what the expenditure of your excess evidences, you’ve got one of the first pieces of the formula you need to get a thorough look at where you’re metaphorically standing right now, and more importantly where that’s likely to lead you and what it indicates you’re likely to become. As you continue through this book you’ll progressively acquire the rest of that formula which I’m currently calling the the edifying value of your output ratio.
It involves measuring your available resources and subtracting those that are designated to your function to determine your surplus. Separate the expenditure of surplus resources that you’re dedicating to yourself from those dedicated to everyone else in your world. This is your output ratio, one of the easier calculations.
Once known, we separately determine the edifying value of both the internal and external dedicated expenditure by seeing how well that expenditure aligns to the principles of edification, as you understand and agree with them. How much of it is spent working from the inside out, from the most important to the least important, is it appropriately prioritised relative to your own determined values and desired outcomes? etc.
Throughout this book I’ll provide numerous ways to calculate each required piece of the formula that you’ll need to confidently measure this and in turn acquire some serious clarity concerning any gaps that likely exist between the life you live and the life you think you live; the who you’re already becoming and how far that is off from the who you do and don’t want to become. This is the edifying value of your output ratio.
- How many ways have you earned money over your life compared to how many ways you’ve spent it?
- What do each say about you?
- How much surplus do you have in a given week?
- How many hours?
- How many dollars?
- How many opportunities?
- To interact with others?
- To practice better responses to anything/everything
- How much of your surplus are you consciously ensuring gets invested in edifying ways for yourself and others?
- What does your current expenditure indicate will occur if your available resources were suddenly dramatically increased? Is it likely to be more help than hinderance, or vice versa?