I think the “personal equation” is a good lens for thinking through decisions and understanding perspectives. Under this approach, we assume everyone in life has a guiding personal equation – a set of inputs that help them get to their objective output.
A few caveats – the first is that not everyone is actively aware of their own personal equation. Secondly, even if you think you are aware of your equation, you are likely incorrect about the inputs and outputs. Nonetheless, it is a framework and a helpful exercise for thinking about your own values.
So how do you go about forming your personal equation?
Some start with the outputs…what do I want to get out of life? I can then work backwards and find out which inputs I will amplify or diminish to get my required output.
Others start with inputs…how do I want to spend my life and then they figure out what their outputs will be.
Others start with constraints…”I will not do this so that is off the table.”
We all can be mapped to an equation – a complicated one – but what is your equation?