Calculated Living

CALCULATING BETTER LIFE CHOICES

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Calculated Living is a method of using information to insulate yourself from the hazards of today's new reality where money and power no longer protect a person from bad investments, dangerous foods, and changing landscapes. Only information can empower calculated choices in pursuit of excellent health, wealth and happiness.

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Calculated Living means making life choices based on valid information. It requires an approach to life:
  • Awareness of Priorities;
  • Acceptance of Reality;
  • Respect for Timing; and
  • Recognition of Choices.

Calculated Living is the process of making conscious choices by understanding the potential of each possibility available to one at a given time. The approach helps to overcome our basic human nature of underestimating the risks we take in investing, eating, socializing, exercising, housing and the actions we take each day. The process of calculating differences in choices we have can lead to a direction that may not have been obvious as well as show clearly when no real choices exist at the time.

Calculated living requires a sharp awareness of what is most important to you every day. The world is changing fast and so is each person that lives in it. A top priority today will likely not rank in the top five priorities in a decade and a massive change in the world or to a person may even make yesterday's top priority moot the following day. The key is to be clear on what your priorities are at each moment in time so that opportunities that present themselves can be properly evaluated.

Calculated living requires accepting the truth about ourselves and the world each day. We no longer have the luxury of being able to slowly modify our underlying belief systems about the world and ourselves. Processing the massive amount of information that bombards us daily makes it impossible to develop a belief system that can survive for any extended period of time. Insisting on outdated beliefs or even past "truths" may keep us from seeing the opportunities in new situations. Any calculation is only as accurate as the information being fed into it, so ignoring facts or not facing a new reality will misdirect the effort.

Calculated living requires recognition of the power of timing. An excellent opportunity 5 years ago may be unattainable today and even if attained will likely lead to a different end. Opportunities that may not have been conceived of 5 months ago may change a person's life in every way today. Timing impacts each of us as we move through time and our physical bodies, mental abilities, and desires change. Timing changes the physical earth, humanity, and every aspect of the external world of investment, food, culture, religion, currency, industry, technology and politics.

Calculated living requires the recognition that some choices are not choices. Though we have choices about a great many things in our life, situations created by the actions of others and acts of nature are out of our control. Understanding this at a personal level frees us to focus on the choices we do have in any given situation and at any given time. A choice made, by its nature, removes other opportunities.

Calculated Living is a way of evaluating your options at a particular time in order to align them with your priorities, goals, and needs for the purpose of maximizing your health, wealth and happiness at every time period in your life.

Even with in depth research and careful calculations, substantial risk exists in any choice we make. The key is to make choices based on what you most value at the level of risk that you find most acceptable.

Making choices leads to more choices and the skills for making good choices are richly rewarded in our fast-paced world with so many possibilities.

This site was created to provide information and tools for making informed choices through a life of Calculated Living.

Send questions or comments to calculatedliving@gmail.com.

Copyright 2011-2012

Calculating a Sustainable Lifestyle
Using the logic of Michael Masterson, we find a way to define the income needed to support a given lifestyle. According to Masterson, the value of the home determines a family’s expenses and that it will cost you 40% of the value of your home every year to support the lifestyle that goes with the home and neighborhood.

Quantitative Easing as a weapon in the Global Currency War
China and the US are in an escalating currency war. China has been keeping their Yuan currency artificially low and hoarding trillions of US dollars to keep its value high. The US Federal Reserve is responding with “Quantitative Easing”, a big name for creating money from nothing.

How new Energy technologies are changing the World
Four years ago investing in new shale extraction technologies were risky. Today, these new shale extraction processes are proven and they are rapidly increasing the availability of cheap, domestically produced energy. At the same time, new energy saving technologies have also been proven and are being deployed throughout the US.

Improving our diet with Omega-3
Researchers are pointing to the lack of omega-3 fatty acids in the average American diet as one of the primary causes of the growing obesity epidemic. Americans’ diet of processed and fast food and changes in what livestock are fed has resulted in an absence of omega-3s.

Will the Fed's $600 billion cause hyperinflation?
Many think that the Federal Reserve’s sudden creation of $600 billion will cause hyper-inflation. However, when calculating the relative “inflationary” value of the new $600 billion compared to the huge dollar value that was created by the housing bubble, the Fed’s amount is very small in comparison.

Calculating inflation
The real inflation between 1980 and 2010 is substantially larger than figures published by the US government claims, particularily for the stuff that makes up the American dream.

Timing Real estate prices with imaginary numbers
The cyclical movement of alternating current between positive 120 volts and negative 120 volts has a lot of the features of the cyclical movement of the real estate market.

Are high-tech sweeteners making us obese?
Genetically engineered corn based sugars have been replacing crystalline sugar in almost every food we eat since 1970, yet they have a completely different composition with health implications that researchers are just starting to study.

Opportunity Costs
The challenge with life’s opportunities is that you can’t take them all; you have to pick them and pick well or live a life of regrets.

Health risks of investments gone bad
Even with the image of depression-era investors jumping from skyscrapers after losing their fortune rooted in our culture, people underestimate the risk of an investment going bad to their health and well being.

Are genetically modified foods safe?
Every year since 1996, Americans have been unknowingly ingesting a greater percentage of genetically modified and engineered foods by eating corn, soy, cotton products and through food additives, flavors, and vitamins.

Creating a personal Micro Mutual Fund
The key to creating wealth, with the ultimate purpose to live off your investments, is to achieve far better returns from stock than the S&P500 without a corresponding increase in risk.

Growing mercury levels in our fish
Recent USGS studies have shown that mercury levels in the North Pacific Ocean have increased about 30% over the last 20 years and are continuing to rise, mostly due to the daily addition of coal burning power plants in China.

Wealth and Being overweight
A study on the relationship between a person's BMI and financial net worth found that gaining weight resulted in a loss of wealth and returning to a prior healthy weight restored a person’s financial losses.

Risks of Voluntary Foreclosures
A study showed people with high credit scores are 50% more likely than people with average or low credit scores to walk from an underwater mortgage that they can still afford, believing that a foreclosure will be only a minor ding to their credit score.