The Difference between Worth and Value

Value and Worth are two words that are often confused when it comes to their usage and meanings. The word ‘value’ is used in the sense of ‘personal importance at a specific time’. On the other hand, the word ‘worth’ is used in the sense of ‘cost’ of a particular thing or the ‘greatness’ or financial status of a particular person.

It is interesting to note that ‘worth’ is most commonly used to refer to the cost of an item when it is bought or sold’. A particular house may be worth several crores in the real estate market. In such cases, worth determines how much a particular thing will sell for in the market. On the other hand, the word ‘value’ is used to stress the significance and the importance of a particular thing. For example, your mother might have gifted you a hand embroidered shawl which might have worth of a few 100 rupees, but for you, it will be of great value. You give value to something because of what it means to you and the emotions attached to it. You might be paying your manager a high pay and your driver who has been with you for over a decade, a small sum. But the value of the driver could be more than that of the manager. This is because, you find that you can find an alternative to the manager but not for the driver.

Know that ‘worth’ is fixed but ‘value’ changes from person to person and time to time.  Your umbrella will have a fixed worth, but it becomes valuable when the rains begin and become insignificant again in other seasons. You might give less worth to a rickshaw, but it seems of very high value if you are stranded on the road late in the night and this is the only means of transport available.

Today, you might feel worthless because you are not doing any job or you don’t have any meaningful relationships, but it is the right kind of job opportunity and friend who will make you realise your high value. ‘Worth’ and ‘Value’ can be understood when you see how a diamond is evaluated. As a raw, uncut stone, it can be kicked around, but when polished, it develops a high worth. As it passes from one jeweller to another, its value changes.

So don’t feel worthless, just because no one has made you realise how precious you really are.

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