anyway, thinking of it as a tradeoff is a great perspective. that is, that you fully own that it's your choice to choose one thing over another.
i've found that over the last few years, as we opted out of the 9-5 grind, a mainstream lifestyle, unjobbed, and basically went to live up a mountain.... that i have shifted from seeing my choices as tradeoffs.
i think that when we give something of our familiar lifestyle up or have it taken from us (a great job, any job! large house, financial comfort) we go through stages of loss. for some of us, the relief of unburdening is too great, or the triumph of taking charge of our life too powerful, that we move into acceptance a lot easier (that would be me). but for others, the process takes time. especially of course if the choice was forced upon you. and even when the choice was yours you can swing back and forth.
buy that new dress/book regardless of how little you have in the bank, because, i mean, we're not poor for pete's sake! tsk
darn company/economic crisis/husband!
look God/Universe, next time i won't max out my credit card, honestly...
i've got a phD/my parents sent me to private school/i'm over 30 and i live like an empoverished gypsy, i'm such a loser
after all of that, comes acceptance.
the pure joy of an empty room
there are two types of acceptance. the surface kind, which is a survival mechanism. anger, depression, and such don't get you invited to parties and make you ill. this kind has you shrugging your shoulders in defeat. fine you say, these are the cards i've been dealt with, i'll make the best out of it. this is the place where you think things like - this too shall pass.
the other type of acceptance can come in place of or after the first type. this acceptance has you see that when you had it all, you didn't truly appreciate it anyway. it has you see that in having less, you have more. it shows you that you are rich with, time for yourself, your family, relaxing. that you are unburdened. that simplicity is pure gold. that a life of less ease and modern conveniences, is actually more engaged with people, the land, your own hands.
you are free. you're not defined by stuff. you think more creatively than ever. your mind and heart move towards things of depth.
not so long ago i would think - i won't get my hair cut professionally so that i can afford another book. now i think - i'll cut my own hair, how convenient, how self-sufficient!
we tend to view a lifestyle that shifted from financially stable and comfortable to one that's not, as a tradeoff between quantity and quality. and it is that. but i think that the second type of acceptance comes when we see abundance and gain in all our choices, rather than as an either/or life.