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What is the Opposite of Scarcity?

July 5, 2016  | 

{3:36 minutes to read} I would have answered this question as “abundance,” which I suspect might be a common response. Not according to Brené Brown, however, in her book Daring Greatly. This amazing book is about allowing yourself to be vulnerable so you can achieve great things. Brené Brown believes that the opposite of scarcity is “enough.”

In other words, you are:

  • Good enough;
  • Smart enough;
  • Attractive enough;
  • Perfect enough; etc.

If you believe that you are enough, you can then face the vulnerability of putting yourself out there and risk the uncertain responses of others.

Clearly, this one sentence doesn’t come close to explaining Brown’s very thorough examination of how you can become more resilient and daring in today’s society. To get that deeper understanding of her thesis, I strongly recommend that everyone read the book.

In terms of “enough,” I was extremely struck by this novel way to combat scarcity. It’s a refreshing take on a society that bombards us with messages saying we can never be or have enough to be happy and fulfilled.

“I Just Want What I’m Entitled To.”

This concept came to mind when I recently heard this fairly common refrain from a client. With all of the uncertainty that separating couples face, I completely understand when one or both parties use that phrase. Undoubtedly, there are friends and family urging them to be sure, especially in mediation, to get all that they can—to not be taken advantage of by their spouse.

The thing is, though, to what are they entitled, and how is that determined?

If it’s what the law provides, that may not be such a clear cut answer. As I’ve mentioned in many posts, even something clearly defined in a maintenance or child support statute is not always so crystal clear when you consider income over the cap, and whether a court determines to apply the statute or not.

  • Even if something is clearly determined under the law, what if it doesn’t provide all that a person needs?
  • Or what if by making that payment, the other party doesn’t have enough to meet basic expenses?
  • If there are scarce resources, how are they to be allocated within the structure of entitlement?
  • Do you spend a small fortune for a trial to have a judge decide?
  • Do you leave it up to your attorneys?
  • More importantly, do you trust others to make that decision for you?

Why not be an active participant in a process to determine what works best for you and your partner? Whether there are scarce resources or not, a discussion focused on need and ability to pay seems to make more sense than a litigated battle over a legal entitlement.

Clare Piro Attorney and Mediator

Attorney & Mediator
500 Mamaroneck Avenue | Suite 320
Harrison, NY 10528
Tel: 914.946.0848

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