The Price of Ignorance: Wasted Time, Effort, and Opportunity

Tagalog Version (Click Here)

“If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
– Derek Bok


Long ago in preschool (a year or two before grade 1), I remember our teacher giving us a quick assignment before going home:
“Take a whole sheet of pad paper and write numbers!”

Following the instructions, my tiny self tore a sheet of paper and started writing. In my zeal, I wrote past 100 before passing my paper. The teacher said one word:

Labis” (Superfluous) and handed my paper back to me.


At that time, I had no idea what that word meant… but since she gave back the paper, I assumed that what I wrote wasn’t enough so I kept writing.

A while later, nearly all my other preschool friends submitted their papers and started going home. Since mine was still being rejected, I continued until my parents had to pick me up from the classroom.

I still thought I wasn’t finished.


It was only later that I learned “labis” (superfluous) was the same as another word I knew:

“Sobra” (excessive, or “too much”).

I wasted a lot of time and effort that day simply because I didn’t know what that one word meant.


A Key Lesson

T. Harv Eker, author of “Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth” told of how he struggled early on in life. He thought about how he was said to have a lot of “potential,” but not a lot of results.

He wanted to be successful, but somehow it never happened.

At a certain point, he received a valuable piece of advice from his father’s rich friend:

“If you’re not doing as well as you’d like, all that means is there’s something you don’t know.”


While that chapter continued about how rich and successful people think differently from average people, that first line alone offered crucial lesson:

Many of us FAIL in life because there’s something VERY important that we never learned.


We didn’t know…

“If ignorance is bliss, there should be more happy people.”

– Victor Cousin


We didn’t know that there’s a better-paying job a few streets near our house.

We didn’t know how to manage time well and prioritize important tasks so we wasted a lot of time and effort working on worthless things.

We didn’t know how to listen to our coworkers and bosses, give feedback, or manage our work well so we didn’t get promoted.

We didn’t know how to manage money properly so we’re always worrying about how to pay the bills and how to survive until our next paycheck.

We didn’t know how to choose good assets so we didn’t know that the company stock, mutual fund, or real estate we bought were failing and we lost the money we invested.

We didn’t know we could start a small grill business and sell barbecue to our neighbors and we didn’t know we could expand it to become a successful restaurant.


We didn’t know that we can grow wealthier and more successful that we are now…
…so we never even tried…


“Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn.”

– Benjamin Franklin


But what if you LEARNED?

What if you learned about the best jobs and careers in your area?

What if you learned how to simplify and prioritize tasks so you can work less yet become far more effective?

What if you learned to become a better leader that people would follow and respect?

What if you learned how to control your finances so you never run out of money?

What if you learned how to choose great assets (stocks, mutual funds, real estate, etc.) and invest in them to become a multi-millionaire or better?

What if you learned how to start a small business and expand it to earn millions?


What if you learned how to become more successful in life?


If you’re not as successful as you want, it means there’s something you don’t know.

When you want to become more successful, you must learn what you need to do in order to earn it.


Now it’s your turn…
What do you think you should learn to earn a better life than what you have now?


“Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.”

– Walter Cronkite

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About Ray

Ray is the head writer behind and is a proponent of improving the world using excellent ideas and self-education. He believes that anyone can achieve their goals once they learn how, and he considers it his mission to enrich lives and end poverty by teaching people the lessons they need to succeed.

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