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Monday, 13 July 2009

The frugalist in a recovering economy

The economy is a cyclic thing. As surely as it goes up, it must come down. And after it comes down, it will go up. Some people say that the economy is on its recovery. This may be true in some parts of the world. But in other parts of the world, people continue to suffer in light of poor government management, bad economic policies, and the vagaries of economic uncertainties, like demand, supply, and the ever changing tastes of the consuming public. Nevertheless a little article from the BusinessWeek website caught my eye and made me chuckle:

"We are like goldfish," the Observer newspaper quoted Jon Macintosh, a Mayfair hedge-fund manager, as saying. "We swim once around our bowl and when we complete the circle everything looks new."


How is the economy doing? People say many things. In the early part of this year, the Feng Shui masters were predicting various things. One master predicted that there would be economic uncertainty for the first half of the year, and that the economy would begin its recovery in the second half. Another master, more venerable than the last, predicted that times would be hard until 2012, but in that short period of time, new millionaires would be born.

The question is not so much about whether the economy is recovering yet, or still down in the dumps. I know that many people are afraid of changing jobs at the moment, afraid to take any chance that they will suddenly become unemployed. Friends told me that factories had told their staff, to work four days a week and take some time off to spend with their families. People are told that there may be a prolonged depression, and that this could last for some time. An article on CNN Money said that people are waiting for better times to come by, so that they can get out of jobs that they don't like, and switch to jobs that they do like.

My advice is that in tough times, people should try looking at the larger picture. Think first of survival, and then only of their whims and fancies. It is true that without work, income is reduced to a nil. Income is everything, and every single cent does count. Having said that, it is said that necessity is the mother of invention, and I feel that every person with some creativity should look out at the world around him, and try to think of what society needs. It may be a source of new ideas for businesses, and new inventions. I have been told that starting a business during hard times has its advantages, in that cost is kept to a minimum.

When the times are tough, the tough will laugh! But they don't stop there. They have to figure out how to lick the problem. Having a good sense of humour does help in your quest, whatever it may be. Keeping things in perspective, having positive drive, looking at the same problem from fresh perspectives, and being willing to leave the situation to reformulate the equation -- these qualities will aid you on your quest, the quest for income.

Good luck in the new economy. And above all, remember to be frugal. I have been told that keeping money too tight has a habit of turning you into a miser, and this chases away money. On the other hand, money -- like time -- is best invested, rather than spent.

Thanks for reading this blog.

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