Pros and Cons before buying a car, life insurance, or having a medical procedure done?

Context: I wrote this so I could summarize what I was thinking, before I had a (diplomatic) conversation with my wonderful in-laws. They live 1,100 miles away. They are in their mid-eighties. I just wanted them to be thinking about some simple, but very important questions. Here we go:

How important is it to carefully consider the pros and cons before making a major decision? Right! Extremely important. Why? What a great question, “Why?” Why allows you to decide with logic and reason, rather than emotion.

What’s the downside of an emotional decision?

What’s the upside of an emotional decision?

What’s the downside of a rational decision?

What’s the updside of a rational decision?

By now I hope we all agree that a rational decision has far more benefits than negatives. And, an emotional decision has far more negatives than benefits. Agreed? Good. This is what is called a blinding flash of the obvious. When the answer is obvious because of the overwhelming logic from life’s experiences.

If you move next door to us, into a mother-in-law apartment yet to be built, what are the pros and what are the cons?:


1. See each other more often.

2. Help each other when we can.

3. Have meals together more often, probably on the weekends.

4. Consolidate financial resources, I think.


1. You lose your social network.

2. Everything is unfamiliar.

3. You become a prisoner in your own home.

4. You lose your routine.

5. You go stir-crazy because you feel trapped.

6. You go stir-crazy because you are bored.

7. A huge reinvestment in medical appointments.

8. Maybe lose your ability to drive, becoming totaly dependant on two busy people.

By jeff noel

Retired Disney Institute Keynote Speaker and Prolific Blogger. Five daily, differently-themed personal blogs (about life's 5 big choices) on five interconnected sites.