The 2 biggest investments of my life – Tom and Jerry

investI am in the profession of building bridges. I build bridges of words, images, videos, audios and basically all elements of communication between my Organisation’s products and the needs of a customer. The other day I was creating one such bridge, a product positioning one pager and I wondered if it applied to me. Do I have adequate life cover for my family, am I getting the best possible tax benefits, am I going to earn guaranteed returns … after all, it was a BIG investment. Is this RIGHT investment for the family? Somehow, it was not clicking…
In a confused state of mind, I reached home which represented littered crayons and paper, things definitely out of place and high decibel noise emanating from my two kids who believe that they are avatars of Tom and Jerry. And then Jerry with her running nose came to me and jumped at me, unmindful of the fact that Mr. Scrooge has just returned from office in a not so good mood. And it is quite frequent these days. Before I could even say something, Tom had his complaints ready and the next 15 minutes as I remember, the 2 of them shifted me from the pains of the office to the gains of their own innocent world. It was the best time of the day, the best possible returns from an investment if I use the hat of a Content professional. My 2 biggest investments of life were teaching me the economics of staying invested in them.
So, what do these investments need – Time, patient listening (which again is an output of time), answering queries and playing games (Time again) and definitely some cool (READ: expensive) toys and delicious (READ: Junk) food at times. The last requirement by this investment is Mr. Scrooge’s wallet which is hijacked by the mother on most of the occasions.
But, the critical question is – What do the investments give in return?
1. Peace of mind – Hardly!! This is very similar scenario compared to my other investments whether it is Equity, Mutual Funds, Real estate … every day and every change in economic environment impacts these investments. However, somehow when these 2 investments sleep peacefully in the night, I feel good. I get my peace of mind even though the entire day had been anything but harmonious existence.
2. Guaranteed Returns – Direct competition with debt based investments. Gone are the days when people were happy with the guarantee, today, they look at the IRR and returns post tax calculation and impact of inflation rate. There is no guarantee that Tom and Jerry would give me any kind of returns over the long term as they would be leading their own lives. Short term returns are simply priceless, Tom’s first school dance, Jerry’s sweet good mornings, they not giving up on me though I scold them a lot …
3. Tax benefits – Life insurance policies provide me tax benefits under EEE regime, which is the best compared to all other financial instruments. In fact, PPF offers similar benefits. This benefit does not come with the taxes imposed by Tom and Jerry. Chocolates, Kinder Joys, Stationery, and the list are endless. These are compulsory contributions from my pocket. I would however, love to pay these taxes as and when they come because the returns far outweigh all taxes and expenses.
4. Meets financial requirements – This is an irony. We work hard so that we can earn well and invest regularly to get good returns which could be utilised for our child’s higher education or marriage or other financial requirement. Nothing wrong with it. But from my perspective, the investments for whom I am (or at least I think so) working so hard, needs only one thing from me, Time.
It’s late in the night and I am blogging these thoughts. However, to put these thoughts in practice, at times is very difficult. It is not impossible though. At the end of the day, whenever I die, I want to die a satisfied person who could say that my Tom and Jerry will definitely make the world a better place to live in.