How are you getting things done? Are you a powerhouse of productivity or do you outsource for efficiency?
The balance between being independent and seeking help continues to be an ongoing conversation in the Snyder family. For both kids and parents.
Completing our own projects can bring a great sense of accomplishment and pride. There’s a lot to be said for the do-it-yourself approach. However, some projects might find us biting off more than we can chew. This results in a lot of stress and frustration for little gain. Our tasks and projects don’t get done or done right.
On the other hand, doing things on your own is great for learning. There are great lessons that come out of do-it-yourself work. Life isn’t easy and being perfect cannot and should not be the focus. Experience and learning from our mistakes will always be the best teachers. Sometimes you just need to bite the bullet and tackle something difficult in order to learn and become better.
So how do you know when it’s the right time to do-it-yourself or when you should hire a professional?
Just think of the Taj Mahal…
At least I do. The reason? My brother-in-law and his experience building a shed in his backyard from scratch. He is fairly handy with a hammer and nail (more than me, for sure), but he isn’t a carpenter. Yet he believed it would be cheaper for him to build the shed than hire a builder to do it.
The result lives on in family lore as “the Taj Mahal.”
We call it that not for its majesty, but simply because it took forever – longer than it may have taken to build the real Taj Mahal! In the end my brother-in-law did finally finish his shed, but he poured more time, effort, energy, and money into that shed than probably was necessary.
So now whenever I look at a prospective project I ask myself if I have a Taj Mahal on my hands. Will the true costs outweigh the benefit of me doing it myself? In other words, is this the best use of my time and what are the true costs of me bungling this project? If I’m okay with having a Taj Mahal, I do it. If I can’t afford a Taj Mahal, I outsource.
The take away here is that you can really only decide how best to get a task done once you understand and consider the true costs and value of the job at hand.
Keep being amazing,
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Kevin Snyder is a husband, father, and an Orange County estate planning attorney and elder law attorney. He is all about family and has a passion for educating his community. He enjoys helping people protect what matters most and inspiring them to be the best versions of themselves they can be.