In this wacky economy, there is a need for self reinvention.
In the wild, living organisms adapt and change or die. So many of us refuse to listen to reason and refuse to alter what it is we’re doing simply because we can’t accept the fact that the pickle we have found ourselves in is one of our own creation.
What part did any of us play in this current financial crisis?
Often times things occur and we end up looking around and asking ourselves," how in the hell did I end up here ?" I want to address both our current economy and the ways we have participated, didn’t plan for and now hide our heads in the sand waiting for someone to help.
I did not plan for the inevitable and as a result am currently couch surfing and diligently retracing my steps and decision making process so as not to repeat the current situation ever again.
With no money, a ton of debt and homelessness a constant looming threat, I am only allowing myself one option.
The choice here is to take full control. I can belly ache about what happened or didn’t. I can point a finger and look at situations that should have or should not have happened and say why? why? why? This option only keeps me stuck.
If I take responsibility for the choices and outcomes I created, then I can be ecstatic knowing that I can create new ones.
For example, when I moved to California, I had fifty dollars to my name and a host of skills. I got a teaching job making more money than I had ever made for doing the least amount of work I had ever done. I didn’t save money or get a second job in the event things went sideways.
I opted to believe : “Sweet Jesus, I’d hit the mother load, the land of milk and honey” and that nothing would ever get any better than this and money would continue to flow unfettered until I made the decision to stop. I truly believed that this job was a gift and would give me the supreme opportunity to make friends, build community and plan my Hollywood takeover.
While I did most of these things, I neglected to make financial plans that would ensure a consistent income and the nest egg that would provide me with the chance to fully pursue my dreams.
I did what I’d done in NYC and pretty much got the same results. I concentrated with dogged determination on one area of my life that I could control and let the one that seemed scary and unmanageable take care of itself.
This did not start here in California.
I came here with a mess of delinquent bills and no handle on money all the while thinking that the next big thing somehow would get me over the hump. Where did this wacky thinking come from ? My grandparents constantly prepared for the future and never got insane about what they could afford.
If my peeps wanted to know if they could afford something, they looked in their wallets and made a decision based on what they saw staring back at them.
This prevented a host of problems down the road. Why do I refuse to plan/live this way ? I believe so many of us who are suffering the economic pinch use some version of this same formula. Keep in mind , everyone is not hurting during these times.
I personally know of more than one person who planned well, took control of their financial decision making by not waiting for some one else to do something and are currently not in a complete and constant state of panic.
What did these folks do ?
Are they smarter than me or you the average American citizen ? Absolutely not. What they did was rely on what they could create in their lives and led with that. I know this sounds a bit airy fairy and all of my friends know how much I like a good platitude, but the reality is they took a different kind of action and as a result are in a very productive arena.
They are in charge of their lives and how things actually go down.
What can we learn from these very wise and focused individuals regarding thriving in the worst economic meltdown in history ?
For one thing, we can learn to take action and keep moving even when we are unsure as to the next step. We can make decisions regarding what we will do or not do regardless of whose in office and what laws go through or don’t. Any body that I know who is not overtly, severely affected by this economy is not waiting to see what comes along or hoping somebody will do something or come to help.
This puts you in a severely vulnerable and powerless position.
People who thrive and have always thrived ask themselves “what next” as opposed to “dear God, why me ?” They then move on the ideas they get after carefully considering them and coming up with the best way to handle their lives which affect their finances and their finances which affect their lives.
Find someone who recognizes that there is change in the air and yet does not piss and moan about it because they had the insight and fortitude to plan.
Ask them what they did and listen intensely.