October 13, 2008

How to Deal with the Current Crisis

No...I'm not going to suggest you to do The Work...yet. We have some triage to do first.

First, I suggest you honor your feelings; hurt, anger, disappointment, fear...let them have their life. I don't mean attaching to gloom, doom, and blame; I mean simply being honest with where you are right now. Spiritual bypass, especially the kind born out of fearing or disdaining "negativity," never works for long. You can't have a clear head if you try to stuff your genuine feelings down. When the emotions subside, either through expression or, with the more tenacious ones, The Work, you'll be better equipped to figure out a sane response so that you can take care of your own needs and those of your family, and be of service in the world as well.

Second, a little perspective is good. The American economy changes; it always has. In my lifetime of 50 years, I've seen several downturns, and things always bounce back...perhaps never to the dizzying heights of the late 1980s when we were all getting 16% returns on our CDs—that was an anomaly—but certainly to more-or-less normal. We can't know how long the downturn is going to last, or what's going to happen next, but we can know this: "This, too, shall pass."

Another perspective: if the U.S. economy fails, everyone fails. Do you think the rest of the world, so heavily attached to and invested in the U.S. economy, is going to let that happen? I mean, how much do we owe China now?

Third: Don't forget to laugh; laughter is healing. See below.

Finally, please try to stop scaring yourself. All kinds of things could happen, that's true...and that doesn't mean they will happen. Even if they do—the economy totally collapses, our money becomes worthless, there are no jobs, etc.—well, that puts us all in the same boat, those on Welfare and those with billions. Worthless money won't buy happiness now, or guarantees of safety in the future. We'll have to find another way. That may be what stock market "corrections" are for.

©2008 by Carol L. Skolnick; all rights reserved.

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