What is a family’s best storage option: using Option Solving?”

A month ago I came across a family struggling with what to do with their items from a former second home in storage. They had been stuck there for some time and were costing mounting monthly fees with no end in sight. It was a good distance away from the prime family home, so not at a convenient location. I therefore got the key couple together and took them through an option solving  scenario.

This started with challenging them to come up with coming up with an appropriate rational looking question, “What is the best option for moving family things out of storage; considering distant storage location, cost of sustaining storage, and absorbing items elsewhere?” There were other considerations, but these were the key ones so as not to  over-complicate the picture.

With this question in their sights, I now encouraged them to develop appropriate Yin and Yang “bookends”; so as to stimulate their thinking and to provide outer limits on their options. Their two bookends turned out to be: “Just leave in current storage,” at one end, with, “Trash everything” at the other. Look at our Latest Example to see why these were unlikely options.


Now they had the option solving framework in place, I challenged them  to discern at least five plausible options by calling on their experiences and intuitive senses. (Note: They were encouraged to produce at least five options to stretch their creative thinking.)  One of their options was: “Move to current home asap, sort and absorb”…  which was their Option B. Take a look at our Latest Example to see which one  you would consider in their circumstances?


I now took them through some emotional distancing , by taking a lunch break to talk about other things, while their minds subconsciously mulled over their chosen options. When they returned to their “pictogram,” their intuitions were primed to make their final choice. They went for option C – see the attached latest example.

We then created an action initiative, based upon this option, while things were still fresh in their minds, and they were good to go. When I followed up with them a week later, everything had gone according to plan except that a piano was left behind because it was too heavy and awkward to move. Their issue now was to find a way to get that moved before an end of month storage deadline.

We now discussed a new option solving dilemma, which we will deal with in 2 weeks time.

If you have an issue example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.  Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “What is family’s best option for disposing of their stored piano?”  We’re always interested in your COMMENTS or go to peter@ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger.)


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