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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

It's not Exactly like Falling off a Horse

Standing Back Up After A Life Crash

Did This Happen To Your Life?By Frugal Guy
Is this what happened to your life during the recent financial crisis? No, I'm afraid I'm not being funny. Many millions of families have been and continue to live through incredible turmoil.

While this current crisis didn't slam me into a wall I have been there. This is why people are searching for topics in this blog so often. Notably, stealth livingand stealth van living both show up in my traffic reports as common queries. Also, posts about extremely frugal meals are in much higher demand than they once were.

With that as the backdrop I want to talk about something a little bit more optimistic. Apparently, according to the economic numbers, we are at or near bottom with respect to unemployment. Yes, this is optimistic, because it means the next direction is up. More and more people will be able to find jobs, find self-esteem, feed their families, and rebuild their hopes and dreams for their children one step at a time.

What I want to talk about is the process of standing back up.

You see, what I notice a lot these days is anger. People are mad at what has happened to them -- which is understandable. However, if you spend any time watching the news, reading blogs, or following financial sites you will see that many people are flailing about for someone to blame. They are convinced that the financial system must be completely crooked. They are convinced the stock markets must be fixed. They are convinced that someone is at fault for their ills.

After all, surely nothing other than criminals and a huge conspiracy to fleece the public must be behind their downfall.

I'm sorry, but that's not how it is. Sure, bad decisions were made. There are plenty of things that were done poorly, by many different players, but we have to recognize that bad things happen to good people sometimes. There isn't always someone to blame. This is true both for natural disasters as well as for man-made disasters. It's not on purpose. It's something that we all got caught in.

Why I am focusing on this?

Those people who have suffered through no fault of their own, and are casting about for someone or something to blame, who are so negative and jaded, are broken. Life sucks. The world is out to get them. Everybody is a crook. They'll never be taken in again because there is nothing they will ever trust!

How in the world can somebody with this viewpoint begin to fit into society productively? You can't expect to be hired, to spread your misery and discontent, to wreak havoc on the motivation and productivity of your peers while you are in this state.

I'm serious. Blatant pessimism, dejection, hostility and depression are not hallmarks of successful job applicants. Would you hire someone in this state? If you are single would you let someone in this state into your life?

If you are one of these disaffected people I do have some advice. Speaking from experience I can tell you that as long as you continue to have food and shelter then there are many good things to reflect on. Focus on the good aspects of what you do still have in your life not the lack of things you used to have.

I know it's easy to say "so what" and dismiss the simple things 

but they are always there. Most of us have forgotten that we can enjoy them.

Fresh clean snow. Crisp cool air. Colorful leaves on trees. A big full moon. A left over newspaper with all of its sections. The return of grass and leaves in the spring. A good blog. A scenic vista and the time to enjoy it. Home cooked healthy frugal food. Exercise and the benefits of it.

I don't know what brings you pleasure and relaxation. I do know it's hard to give up the bitterness that comes from a life crash. However, to get back into the groove, to re-enter the race, you need to find a way to stop focusing on how unhappy you are and instead focus on the positives
that are still available to you. 

All the rest? Let it go. 

It's hard. It's damned hard. It's also one of the most important thing you can do to let yourself be swept up by the pending recovery. Don't let yourself push opportunity away... be ready to accept it.

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