“I do think I’d rather sell the motorhome so we could send her to that school,” my wife said.
I looked up from the book I was reading and thought about it for a second. “I don’t think it has to be an either/or decision,” I said.
My wife was telling me about a talk she had with someone who was giving her advice about a decision we were making about where to send our daughter to school.
This person told her that if she were in our shoes she would get rid of our motorhome payment so she could send her daughter to private school.
But as soon as I heard the you need to choose “this or that” advice I cringed.
This way of thinking causes you to live a small life where you’re constantly forcing yourself to choose between “this or that.”
It’s a symptom of a scarcity mindset. And it’s dangerous.
An abundance mindset, on the other hand, says there’s always enough. It does not believe that in order for Tom to get ahead, Paul has to suffer. There’s not a finite amount of money or resources in the world… there’s an abundance!
I understand that making decisions means you can’t choose everything. For example, I know if I decide to go on a 10-day backpacking trip around Mt. Rainier that I will miss out on 10 days of experiences with my family.
There are certainly tradeoffs in life. But most the time is has to do with your time. You can always make more money. You can never make more time.
However, there’s almost an unlimited number of ways to make money. If you have an employee mindset or a scarcity mindset you may disagree.
But if you’re an entrepreneur or someone who lives in the realm of abundance you’ll know this is true. It just requires creative persistence.
Back to the “motorhome vs private school” discussion.
We decided to reject this question and instead ask a different one: how can we keep our motorhome, which we love because we have so many wonderful experiences in it as a family, and send Emma to private school?
The answer didn’t come right away. But that’s ok. I didn’t know how it would happen. I just believed it would.
I assumed I would just make more money in the business.
But something else happened…
My wife figured out how to rent our motorhome out on a couple websites, Outdoorsy.com and RVShare.com.
She posted it on those sites and within 2 weeks she rented it out for 3 weeks this Summer and made $3,400! Which is about the cost for the annual tuition to the private school.
So of course we’re excited and thankful! Plus, my wife is having fun doing this because she can justify spending a little money on fixing up the motorhome because now it’s an asset, not just a liability.
I’m proud of her and I can’t wait to see what happens as we rent it out more.
But it’s also a good reminder to not settle for a “False Dilemma.”
A false dilemma is a type of informal fallacy in which something is falsely claimed to be an “either/or” situation, when in fact there is at least one additional option.” – Wikipedia
These type of dilemmas are presented to you by other people and even by yourself all the time. It’s important you recognize them. When you do, ask yourself if your only options really are “this or that?”
Here’s some other examples:
- Either quit your job, be broke and pursue your passion or keep your job and make money (why not create a business you enjoy on the side while you keep your job?)
- You can either save money or stop eating out (what about just making more money?)
- You either agree with everything the pastor says or you become a critical jerk who doesn’t respect authority (can’t you respect authority and still question what’s being taught?)
I think you get the idea.
So now here’s your mission: as you go through this week pay attention to False Dilemmas and do your best to resist them. Don’t settle for either/or solutions.
Now please either share this post with 10 of your closest friends or receive bad luck for the next 10 years. Oh what? Chain letters are not cool anymore? SOOORRYYY. Jeez.