Dear friends…in the spirit of my UP Talks brand, today I’d like to put forth an “uplifting yet provocative” conversation. We’ll start off with the provocative, and end with uplifting music by my favorite female duo…
My concern for us today is about the American economy today (November 2019)—how we are describing it and thinking about it, and how we feel about it. Why do I care? I’m on a mission to help anyone who will listen to set aside some intentional time in 2020 to organize their financial lives, so they increase their resilience quotient. This is about resilience not only to an unpredictable economy, but to any unplanned life event that could throw us off financial track and wreak havoc on our nervous systems and our joyful life path.
Some data: Most Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and a recent Brookings study reported that 44% of all workers aged 18-64 have low-wage jobs. That’s almost half of our workforce! We hear reports of “job creation” but too many of those jobs are low wage jobs. People in credit card and other debt are suffering also. We all know about the housing crisis and the impact a health crisis, divorce, or losing a spouse or job can have on our financial footing. And yet studies also show that despite lower consumer confidence, people are planning on spending big bucks on Black Friday and for Christmas! Whaaaaat? Does this sound cray-cray to you too?
Meanwhile…we’re all hoping and praying that some Democratic candidate will swoop into the White House and make it all better. But then we learn that Democrat billionaires are boycotting Elizabeth Warren simply because she’s calling for a measly 2% tax on families with net worth of more than $50 million. Warren also wants to put a 6% tax on household net worth over $1 billion.
Despite the vast and growing gap between the have’s and the have not’s, it blows my mind that Democrat billionaires won’t vote for Warren, simply in order to avoid paying taxes. Keep in mind that the uber-rich believed in Reagan’s “trickle down” theory when it was convenient for them. Hmm.
For me, financial wellness includes thriving financially and emotionally, where we’ve got emotional balance and joy because we’re clear on how much money and stuff are enough. My Dad regularly shares his favorite quotes with me. Here’s a perfect one for this topic:
“Joseph Heller, an important and funny writer (now dead) and I were at a party given by a billionaire on Shelter Island. I said, “Joe, how does it make you feel to know that our host only yesterday may have made more money than your novel ‘Catch-22’ has earned in its entire history?” And Joe said, “I’ve got something he can never have.” And I said, “What on earth could that be, Joe?” And Joe said, “The knowledge that I’ve got enough.” – Kurt Vonnegut
So let’s focus on YOU. Do you feel resilient today? If your company eliminated your position tomorrow, do your current finances allow you to sleep at night, knowing you’ve got your Life Happens Fund to carry you for 3-6 months while you take time and take stock to get the right next job? If your furnace goes kaput on the coldest day of the year, do you have $4000 set aside to pay for it, or will you put it on a credit card and end up paying three times that amount? It’s more than okay if you’re not ready. It’s all welcome here. No matter where you are today, you can be anywhere your beautiful heart desires.
Resilience is like being a strong, deeply rooted tree. When the winds of change come along and you’re being blown about, you rest in knowing your roots have pushed deeper for stability, and your branches have stretched out wider for balance.
For a recent UP Talks presentation I gave at Santa Rosa’s awesome co-working space CoLAB, called “Recession-proof your Finances and Career” I shared my carefully curated list of actions that we can take feel more deeply rooted, more prepared, stronger, more resilient. You can download the PDF here. I’d love to hear what you liked and other ideas I didn’t think of.
Despite the what-if scenarios in this blog, my message to you is that this is not negative thinking. Thinking about “what could happen” is just being conscious, and smart. You choose to get comfy with your relationship to money, prepare/get resilient with a Plan and a Plan B, and then you go live your beautiful life. You sleep better at night. Your energy is lighter. You are more confident and courageous about everything you go.
To learn more about resilience and how to thrive in the upcoming decade, you may wish to consider joining my Master Your Money, Transform Your Life live/online program, which starts late January 2020. Or simply schedule a free 20-min chat with me to find out what your Plan A and a Plan B could look like.
Well, it’s Thanksgiving Day 2019 and I’m signing off, wishing you an abundance of joy and the knowledge that you are already enough as a human being. Net worth is never about human worth. Do all you can to let go of comparison-itis and start living the life that brings YOU joy and inspiration. Just. Let. Go.
Signing off now with one of my current favorite songs, aptly named “Resilient” by the sister duo Rising Appalachia. And here are the beautiful lyrics and info on this hugely talented duo. I’m so grateful that they share their talent and voices with the world. How about you? Do you have an unsung song that you could realize, if you had the inspiration (or time or money) to sing it loudly and proudly?
Get future blog posts and other updates straight into your favorite inbox! Send me a quick note here and you’re in! (or sign up in my website footer). Also, my 2020 7 Steps to Money Mastery program begins on January 27.