Find the No-Brainer Scenario: Work for Myself or a Company?

Recently I asked the members of the Shmorian Society what they wished the No-Brainer Scenario could help them decide. I left it open-ended, because I’m starting to believe that there are very few situations the technique won’t help with.

Here’s one of the responses I got:

I wish the No-Brainer Scenario could tell me whether working for a company or for myself is the better option for me, a mother with house payments and childcare payments as my main obligations. By working for someone else I have stable income but not as much flexibility in my schedule; solopreneurship would provide the flexibility (I think) but probably not the stable income.

I’m not sure I’d be a better mom if I was physically there for my kids but distracted by emotional worries due to financial insecurities.

The No-Brainer Scenario technique can definitely help with this, but possibly not in the way you would expect.

The technique can’t tell you which option is better for you, because that’s a subjective question only you can answer. (And I wholeheartedly believe that what’s best for you is always whatever your heart wants.)

What the technique can help you with is to clarify what you want, and the conditions you would need to feel safe to go after it.

When I read between the lines of your question, what I get is that you feel frustrated at the lack of flexibility in your schedule. You want to be able to be there for your kids more.

And yet you’re also concerned that if you opt for more flexibility, you’ll have to accept a decrease in stability. It’s very wise for you to realize that if you’re stressing about finances all the time, you’re probably not doing your kids any favors.

So for the sake of this post, let’s assume that you do want to work for yourself. And at the same time you don’t think that’s a practical solution because of the whole stability thing.

How the No-Brainer Scenario can help

Part of what the technique does is to create a container where you can explore what you want without worrying about how to make it happen.

The way to start is by asking yourself, “What would make it a No-Brainer to work for myself instead of for a company?”

Next, it’s time to list everything you’d need to feel good about giving up the apparent stability of working for a company in exchange for more flexibility.

I’m just making some educated guesses, of course, but maybe your list would look something like this:

  • My business would be truly flexible & not suck me in to working at other people’s offices all day.
  • Although the monthly income might vary, I’d be able to bring in a minimum of $2000 per month.
  • I’d have a cushion of 6 months of living expenses saved up, for added security.
  • The added flexibility would allow me to cut my childcare costs by half or more.

The possibilities are endless as far as what you can include on your list. If it’s important to you, put it on there.

What the list is telling you

Once you’ve got your list, there is so much information you can use to start creating a plan.

You already know that:

  • Any potential business needs to provide true flexibility.
  • Financial stability is really important, and you’ve got some information about what stability looks like to you.
  • It’s important that making a change like this make it easier for you to be there for your kids, and you know that you want to decrease the amount of time they spend in daycare.

More specifically, you’d probably want to focus your energy on investigating online business options. Or possibly a service business that can be conducted at non-9-5 hours. And you can explore ways to start a biz as a side-gig at first, so that you can keep your job for now.

You could also explore decreasing your expenses so you could save for a cushion more quickly.

But it goes beyond that.

You could take those same conditions, and put your feelers out for a job that gives you those same things: financial stability and flexibility to be there for your kids.

Because if you’re getting what your heart wants (financial stability and a flexible schedule), maybe it doesn’t matter whether you get it by starting a business or by working for a company.

What’s important is that you get clear on what you want and work toward giving yourself those things.

How about you?

Do you see yourself in the situation above? What conditions would be in your No-Brainer Scenario?

What do you wish the No-Brainer Scenario could help with? I’d love to hear about it.

The No-Brainer Scenario: A Simple Tool for Powerful Clarity is now available (at the launch celebration price!). Know what you want so you can make it happen.