Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Tuning 'Possessions' Into Inventory to Share


--by behappyrightnow, posted Jul 25, 2011

Ever since my new laptop arrived, I held on to my older one thinking it would serve me some day. In the last few months, every time I opened the closet and saw it, I felt depressed. Here was a perfectly good laptop gathering dust, and I had turned it into inventory. Cutting-edge inventory control systems encourage us to shed our inventory because it  takes up space without creating any value. :)  I got the chance to change that a few days back, when we had a visitor who was having a crummy time in life.

After helping this friend with ideas on how to start a massage business and spread the word,  I suggested, "You need to get out there on the Internet and set up your homepage." My friend replied, "For that, I need a good machine. My machine is so slow that I can't really do anything on it." A light bulb went off, followed by a big smile. 

I asked my wife in our native tongue what she thought of the idea, and she responded in the affirmative. I ran upstairs, got the laptop, and brought it down for our friend, "We want you to have this so you can do what you need to." Our friend was so moved, and couldn't believe it. But this was my opportunity to get the brick out of my heart, and I wasn't going to pass up on it. :) How do I explain that I was really helping myself?

I installed Ubuntu Linux (entirely community driven operating system) as my friend was not familiar with Windows, and handed over a laptop that was much needed. 

Thinking through this, it is way cooler and more useful to think about what I have as inventory, rather than possession. Inventory has an explicit purpose - we are temporary guardians, protecting our inventory so that we may create future value. This immediately increases our awareness of value-creation possibilities as and when they arise. When we mistake inventory as a possession, we fall into attachments and stop creating value. 

It is fun to examine this metaphor some more. For instance, state-of-the-art inventory control is about "just-in-time" value creation. That fits nicely with the belief, "I have just the right amount of time and resources" to do what I can to serve. 

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Readers Comments

annjav wrote: That is a fine philosophy for us all to take to heart. There are native american tribes who consider it an honor to own little and when they get "stuff" they share it or give it away.
moral12 wrote: That was a generous gesture of yours to donate your laptop, and, suggest to your friend some business ideas. (not to mention, helping control your "inventory". Great work!
Ollie wrote: This is such a wonderful way to think about "stuff".Thank you for opening my eyes about inventory . Bless you .
Glowworm wrote: Goes back to the saying "You can't take it with you." So why get attached to it? Great way to look at things, behappyrightnow :) You have a great perspective on "stuff." God bless. -G.
Bluebell wrote: It was extremely kind of you to give the computer to your friend. I share exactly your point of view, I think that we are all learning the path to "we own everything and nothing is ours" there is so such much freedom when we move from possession to guardians. I have always amazed family and friends by the easiness of my giving, but that is how I see the world we are here for a short period of time and when we leave we take nothing. Thank you for sharing. Love and Light and a Thousand Smiles, Bluebell
2cents wrote: Thanks for sharing this liberating insight!
unknown wrote: Kudos to you behappyrightnow !!! I loved this well-said statement of yours, I find it very wise and beautiful to hear ! 'we are temporary guardians, protecting our inventory so that we may create future value. This immediately increases our awareness of value-creation possibilities as and when they arise. When we mistake inventory as a possession, we fall into attachments and stop creating value. ' God bless, Deeper (-: :-) ...
MakeSomeoneSmile wrote: How nice of you to share it!
Woodrose wrote: Beautiful idea :)
unknown wrote: I was influenced profoundly by your post ... I shared the lines that touched me in my facebook account ... Thank you behappyrightnow for being who you are ...

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