In 2007, the real estate market burst followed up in 2008 with a historic stock market crash, creating economic turmoil through 2009 into 2010. The world and us, its people, were in turmoil. A true recession with a pretty long recovery.
Enter 2020 and we have a pandemic, significant racial unrest, political turmoil, an erratic stock market and high unemployment.
We have written many blogs on understanding, embracing and dealing with the conflicting emotions and weight of all of this on individuals and families. What many of us thought would last a few weeks, or at worst a few months, is seemingly creating a domino effect of national, world, and therefore, personal issues to deal with.
Many of the people in my circles lament current events and are frustrated with what feels like being in limbo.
After we get a vaccine….
After the election….
Once we fix this….
And these one days are drawn out like carrots on a stick.
Let’s rebel. Let’s break through the quicksand of waiting and start doing now.
It is fall and in South Louisiana, the weather is changing, albeit slowly. With a bit of cool weather, my imagination engine starts to rev up. I want to stop focusing on the “can’ts” and start focusing on what I can do.
I am a planner and goals inspire me. We are in October. This is when I want to end the year strong. Here is a laundry list of what we CAN do:
- Make a list of smaller, more intimate, holiday plans. In Louisiana, we can still be outside even in December. Can you plan a Thanksgiving porch gathering with your family or a few friends?
- Can you create a series of small get-togethers with friends over the holidays and avoid large parties where you would normally see them?
- Focus on health goals. How do you get out in the not-so-hot outdoors and get moving? Do you have extra time at home to create a new healthy eating regime until that outdoor Thanksgiving gathering?
- Spend time coming up with thoughtful gifts this season. Usually, we are so busy we are rushing last minute to pick up gifts, and throwing them into gift bags, as the gift recipient rings the doorbell. Take time. Write a meaningful note or card. Wrap each gift with love and care.
- Make a financial plan. What do you need to do to shore up finances, or survive, during this time? Especially with holidays coming up! Many times, in our hurry, we forget the cost and load up credit cards for gifts that are not even meaningful. We should figure out how much, any amount counts, we can put in our IRA, pay-off credit cards so interest does eat up our hard-earned cash, and look for resources to steward our finances. Now might be the time to read one of Dave Ramsey’s financial freedom books.
- Find new leisure activities or pick up that hobby always pushed aside. I think social time with family and friends is important, but with that more limited, I have spent more time painting and reading novels than I have in years. Not only is it entertaining, but it is also relaxing and stress-relieving. It is good for my mental and spiritual health.
We have a lot of do’s and don’ts right now imposed by others. It makes us feel helpless, and sometimes hopeless.
In some areas our hands are tied, but not all. My challenge is for all of us to focus on what we can do.
- I can vote! It is your voice in our country and states.
- I can Help! If you don’t have financial resources, find something dear to your heart and give your time or serve with your gifts.
- I can Love! Jesus has only one currency that is universal and eternal. And it is unlimited.
There are many survivors of terrorism, economic hardship, war, pandemics, social injustice. And unfortunately, most of us will see many cycles of many of these in our lifetime.
Through Christ, I can live my best life in all of life’s circumstances. Because our best life is to live life, not abdicate it to our circumstances.