Recession pep talk #2

hypnowatchThe economy is good, then its bad, then it’s good again.  You are getting veeerrry sleepy.  The hypnotic effect of this giant pendulum swinging back and forth can hypnotize you into a “do nothing” trance… worried if things will ever get better, frozen with inaction when you really should be capitalizing on it.

Crisis brings change. Change brings opportunity.  Blue chip stocks can be purchased at bargain prices.  Suits are “buy one get one free” at the Men’s Wearhouse.  Car dealers are actually willing to make deals.  Your next big success story at work will be twice as sweet because you did it during a recession.

 

Think of it this way.  Airplane pilots pride themselves on having the same number of takeoffs as they do landings.  And throughout history, there have been the same number of recessions as there are recoveries.  The next recovery is coming around soon.  What can you do right now to accelerate it?

 

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6 Comments on “Recession pep talk #2”


  1. It amazes me that perhaps the prime factor driving the economy into a recession and holding it there is not governmental leadership or administration, nor is it the price of oil. It is the thinking of the masses. US. It seems to me that if we participate in the recession then we are part of that trend of negative energy, feeding the downward slide, adding to the fears and worries of economic collapse, and being as guilty of contributing to the problem as anyone.

    During these last two years, my health is good, my income has improved considerably along with my opportunities, I have found the woman of my dreams, we are buying a condo at the best conceivable price with the lowest interest rate in perhaps my lifetime, and my children are on their way to finding themselves and freeing their thinking from the same box-lunch education that we are all handed.

    People are focusing on the dwindling dollar, and forgetting about happiness. Happiness I have found, although it took me over five decades, and I am sharing it with the ones who mean the most to me – my family and close friends.

    In this state of mind and well-being, I am doing exactly as David suggests – taking advantage of opportunities, and NOT feeling guilty – not one single bit.

    …Life Is Good!

  2. davidgoad Says:

    Roland, thanks for the comments. It’s good to hear you are achieving happiness my friend. You are a shameless opportunist and I love you for it 🙂
    I’m doing well in my career (by my standards) too, but I’ve worked so hard to get where I am. No guilt here.

  3. Larry Humes Says:

    To your point, David, one of the most successful hoteliers here in Orlando was written up in the paper recently for his approach to the recession. While other hotels are downsizing and cutting corners in anticipation of what may be, Harris Rosen is renovating his hotels and taking advantage of the opportunities. Hmmm. Maybe that’s why he is so successful? Instead of being gripped by fear, he seizes the moment and keeps his focus on the long term.

  4. John Williams Says:

    I concur with my good friend Roland and David. Too many people buy into the “Victim” or “Helpless” mentality. I just finished re-reading Ayn Rands classic “Atlas Shrugged”. No one has any power over you as long as you don’t surrender your mind. Mans natural state is Joy and Happiness! We are made to feel guilty for our own success so other people won’t feel bad!??? Celebrate your life and the success of your friends. Another favorite book I re-read when I need an attitude adjustment is “The Magic of thinking Big” by David Schwartz. Someone is making money in this economy you can too!

  5. Baruch Deutsch Says:

    David,

    After reading your blog entry I suffered from a sudden overdoze of optimism. In order to recover, I just had to post an email I sent a couple of weeks ago to few of my friends… (they don’t talk to me anymore 😉 So take a deep breath and here it goes:

    I am no economist. And macro economy was a class I struggled with during my MBA. So feel free to ignore what I am saying, since it’s based just on “common sense”…

    I am afraid we are in such a deep hole, that it will take more than a decade to dig ourselves out, if we’re successful. Sure, you can dismiss it as my usual “pessimism”. But frankly this “hole theory” didn’t dawn on me till a few days ago. I guess work is a great tranquilizer…

    So why are we in a hole?

    For several decades, the US economy has been shifting from a producing society to a services and consumer society. Most of the “goods production” has shifted to APAC. What we are left with is financial services, health services and LOTS of consumption. We have been buying goods from overseas, using nothing but.. credit.

    The whole system worked because the US could “print” its own currency and credit rating was high to keep funding consumption via debt. Now we’ve fallen behind not just in production of “real goods”, but also in production of knowledgeable individuals. Public schools to anyone who experienced them are in deep trouble for decades. And the quality of K-12 education sucks. In Silicon Valley we bridged some of the gap using borrowing.. We imported smart, highly educated people from overseas. All in exchange for living the american dream, based on american debt.

    This magic formula of producing wealth through debt had to fail at one point or another. Unfortunately that time has come. A shock applied to the financial system through convoluted and unfounded mortgage “tricks” has caused a credit system crash.

    And NOBODY knows how to reboot the system… And even if we do, the vulnerability of American debt will devalue its currency for a while. No longer could America excessively borrow to fund consumption.

    So the way out of this hole is through a fundamental restructuring of the US economic system and frankly some of its society. Education systems take decades to produce any impact, and that is of course under the assumption that all the problems are fixed immediately, and a cadre of good teachers is readily available. So if we fix the education systems within a year (yeah right..), it will take 10-20 systems to start producing students who can compete in a global economy.

    And the manufacturing jobs? How exactly will a US worker compete with a Chinese worker that makes <10% of the income and works 150% of the time? Sure, Chinese workers would like to eventually benefit from their own labor, and with rising wages, inflation and standard of living the gap will be eliminated. Give it another 10-20yrs. And don’t forget all those developing countries with millions of people that are eager to do the same work for less than 10% of the cost. We’ll have to wait in line till the Chinese complete their outsourcing cycle…

    So where will the growth come from? Web 2.0? Facebook? Google? These are as “virtual” as the money the US borrowed.

    Right, there is clean-tech, nano-tech, bio-tech, and xyz-tech. All of them in their infancy and will take many years till they contribute significantly to the GDP.

    So welcome to the 21st century. Where cars are made in Japan, computers in Taiwan, clothes in China, and software in India. But if you want a really good hamburger – the US is it.

    Gentlemen, my sense is that we are hosed for a while. And I should really sign up to a class in Mandarin.

    Your ever optimistic friend…

    Baruch

  6. davidgoad Says:

    Baruch, that’s an insightful commentary. It looks like lots of people are passionate about the topic. Now when are we going to do lunch in Santa Clara?


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