Yes. I bought a time-share.
And yes. My wife works in a network marketing company.
If you can bear those true confessions from me, please read on.
Both are things many people roll their eyes at when they hear about them. But they also offer fantastic lessons in the reality that doing Different is sometimes right under your nose—in places many people blow off because a stigma blinds them to the possibilities.
Time-Sharing Your Life Away
Why did it occur to me to mention time-shares and network marketing in Different on Purpose this week?
Largely because I’m enjoying a mountain breeze while writing on the back porch of a resort in East Tennessee, and while I've been here, a good friend (who is also a fine blogger at marktwhitten.com) pointed out during a phone conversation that I’ve done incredible things with my time-share opportunity and ought to—according to him—“write a book about it.” For now, though, this blog post will have to do.
One of the “incredible things” he saw is what I’m doing this week. Nancy needed time alone at home to plan family menus, re-organize the kitchen, make progress on a major family photo-archiving project, and strategize for her business. So, I brought the three still-at-home kids to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee for a Monday through Friday retreat of our own—at a cost of a few hundred time-share points* but no cash out of pocket for four nights of way-comfortable lodging.
And in other time-share news:
Last summer, we hosted 17 family members at a resort in Florida. It was a mini-family reunion, the lodging for which would easily have cost $5-6,000 otherwise.
In January, Nancy and I retreated for a week to a resort in the North Carolina mountains to get our work-year and goal-planning off to a good start.
For my son’s 17th birthday in March, he and I spent three nights in a Gatlinburg (TN) resort, so I could treat him to multiple rounds in what may be the mini-golf capital of the universe. It was a “dream trip” for a teenager who adores mini-golf.
Then there was the Spring 2018 family trip to Arizona, a Fall “field trip” to Thomas Jefferson’s home at Monticello, James Madison’s Montpelier, and the battlefield at Fredericksburg. There’s more, but you get the idea.
The “N-Word” of Marketing
Network marketing also helped foster this week's blog.
Nancy adds several thousand dollars every month to our bank balance, thanks to her work-from-home, mostly-online business. Five years of that has been immensely helpful to our family’s well-being after 30 years of life as a single-income household. And her business contributes to our lifestyle of avoiding the 9-to-5 rat race.
I tell you about our time-share and network marketing blessings not to sell you on those specific ideas but to alert you to a valuable truth: Sometimes doing Different can mean grabbing hold of things other people ignore or disdain and discovering a great opportunity as a result.
Where others saw only a “hard-sell” from time-share marketers or an “expense,” we saw an opportunity to take upscale vacations and include our grown children in ways we wouldn’t otherwise be able to, all while building our net worth instead of simply expending large sums of cash.
Where some people saw a been-there-done-that network marketing “scheme,” Nancy saw a business opportunity consistent with her passions and our lifestyle that has paid great dividends.
The big action point here is this:
Be open to seeing opportunities where other people see stereotypes or problems.
Whatever they’re overlooking may be part of your ticket to the Different life you want.
*If you want to know more about how this works, send me an email at email@example.com.
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