Economics of Daily Life
Economics is a study of how society manages its scarce resources. The literal translation for economy is “one who manages a household.” “In an increasingly complex world connected by social and economic interaction and interdependence, news of stock market fluctuations, consumer confidence scores, and various economic indicators fill the media” (Broome & Preston-Grimes, 2011). This means that economics is everywhere, even in a home. Every household makes decisions that follow the economic principles. There are tradeoffs, and incentives. Supply and demand regularly show up in a household setting, as do decisions regarding limits on price and time. I am a single mom and the science of economics is a daily occurrence, at the grocery store, while doing homework, and in my choice of home and bills. Economics is an inevitable part of most people’s daily lives. It occurs in every facet of home, work, and school. There are ten principles to economics. They are the decisions that need to be made in regards to the jobs that need to be done, and the management of the resources that will allow the necessities to be provided. One of the principles that occur most in my daily life is tradeoffs. Tradeoffs occur when a person has to choose between one thing and another, forgoing one desirable option, for the more beneficial, sometimes undesired option. In a study done in 2011, a Montessori middle school set up a school store. Some of the students just ran the store, some of them bought items to sell, and others made things to sell in the store. The kids that ran the store did so as a trade-off of playing at their lunch or hanging out with their friends. Sam was one of the students who chose to make something to sell in the store. Sam traded his time on Sunday to make pretzel bites to sell, instead of doing something else of his own desire. Tradeoffs are common in my life, as I am a working mother of 4 children, who is now going to school full time. I often choose between sleep and homework, and sometimes, homework and extra time with my children. There is also the trade-off of being with friends or keeping my house clean. I could probably list a few hundred tradeoffs that occur during my day. Another principle of economics is incentive. Incentives are a form of motivation for a person to do something; a simple example of incentives is being paid working wages. The Montessori school children in the study had an incentive for their school to do well; the profit would be funds for a school trip at the end of the year. The better their school store did the more money they had at the end of the year (Broome & Preston-Grimes, 2011). Incentives are one of the principles that show up in my daily life regularly. With four children in one house, the concept of incentives is crucial. There are chores to be done daily, and the incentive of money as a reward is one of the incentives I use. In my job, I also receive the incentive of money for working. Incentives also show up while driving; not getting a speeding ticket is the incentive for driving the speed limit. Tradeoffs and incentives are only two of the ten principles that I come across in my life at home. Not only am I a mom but I am a manager of a floral shop in a town close to me. Supply and demand are so very apparent in my field, and it is a very fluid thing. The supply that I handle daily is obviously the flowers. Our flowers come from various places from all over the world. Supply is based on seasons, weather, and time of travel. The supply of our goods stays relatively the same. The demand of flowers is the fluid piece of our industry. When the calendar works towards a holiday, the demand goes up. Take for example, Valentine’s Day, the demand of flowers, more specifically, roses, increase. Our supplier has only a certain amount of flowers available. Because the demand is high, the suppliers...