Do consumers around the world create the economy? Or does the news we hear create the economy we experience?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, especially since putting my house up for sale in June. Why is it that when the economy is sizzling home buyers feel positive and go out and buy? But when the economy slows potential home buyers step back and allow fear to grip them, even if the economic slow down hasn’t affected them?
A few years ago when the housing market was roaring and seemingly unstoppable there were some lone voices touting that it was only a matter of time before the “housing bubble” would burst. But, these voices were few in comparison to the din of positive ones, so buyers continued to buy and sellers continued to sell with ease.
The negative voices started drowning out the positive ones when banks began showing losses in the subprime market (loans to buyers with sub-par credit), which caused buyers to hesitate and stand on the sidelines. As buyers withdrew from the market prices dropped based on oversupply and decreasing demand. As values sank banks began reigning in many of the programs that had enabled a majority of home purchasers to buy, cutting another segment of buyers from the market and compounding the problem.
While this is an over-simplification of what happened, I believe the repetition of the message that the real estate market was in a melt-down reached a saturation point in the consciousness of consumers causing the market to come to a halt. When a vast number of buyers stopped buying – home prices tumbled – affirming the ‘bubble’ theory. So, if we consumers contributed to creating this stalled real estate market can we UN-create it?
Consumers did UN-create for a while. The vicious downward cycle was interrupted briefly with the home-buyer’s tax stimulus from January 1, 2009 through April 30th, 2010, when it expired. During this time we saw appreciating prices and homes selling more quickly than they had in the previous two years.
But what really changed during that time? Economically there were no huge increases in job growth, nor did the economy grow significantly, so what happened? Was it the $8000 tax credit? Yes, and no. If you think about it logically does $8K have any long lasting impact upon a person’s life? Not really – so there has to be more to it, but what? – Buyers simply changed their minds. They decided it was a good time to buy, and the home-buyer’s stimulus was the carrot that led them to market.
In order to release the brakes on the economy, we have to realize that our buying habits do affect the economy tremendously. We also have to understand that our emotional reactions drive our buying habits. Only when we begin to feel confident about the course of our own lives will the economy begin to perk-up. So, to UN-create this economic slow down we first have to work on what’s going on within us emotionally.
To grease the wheels of your inner economy and get it going again try working with these 5 tips:
1. Be grateful for what you have. The only way to begin to reverse this economic contraction is by first recognizing what’s working in our lives, no matter how small it may be. Do you have business/clients to work with? Be grateful. Even if it’s being able to pay your bills this month – commend yourself. When we stop replaying the messages of lack and limitation, and acknowledge what’s going right in our lives instead, we begin attracting more positive circumstances.
2. Acknowledge the difficulties and challenges you’re facing, and take whatever action is necessary. Make a list of all the obstacles preventing your inner economy from flowing. Decide on an action plan for each one – and then execute them. Could you sell some unneeded things on Ebay? Or would a part-time job do the trick? Be creative – there’s always some solution.
3. Don’t wallow in the negativity. Endless worrying will not solve any problems. Repeat affirmations about about having abundance, and feeling safe and secure like the ones Louise Hay has in her books. Visualize yourself living your ideal life right now. Whatever you do – get the negativity out of your head fast before it has a chance to put down roots!
4. If you have the money to buy something you’ve been wanting – do it. Don’t allow the fear-based headlines to hypnotize you. If you’ve been saving up for something and can afford to buy it now – by all means buy it. Spending some money is the perfect way to grease the wheels of your inner economy – something my friend Rob White from Mind Adventure calls “sowing and reaping.” You have to sow the seeds (by spending/investing) before you can reap the bounty of the harvest(return on your investment).
5. And last, do something you enjoy, even for an hour a day that distracts you from constantly dwelling on all this depressing news. Don’t put happiness off for when things get better. Make time to do what you enjoy – now. Take that salsa dancing class. Go out in nature and walk. Invite friends over and cook a fabulous healthy meal. Go to a movie. The point is to put some joy back in your life by becoming a joy magnet. You can’t attract joy unless you already feel joyous – like does attract like.
I’ve decided that I do create my own economy and that it originates from within me. If I allow myself to be consumed by fear I’ll surely make wrong choices based on panic and probably end up creating the fearful circumstances I’m trying to avoid. I know for sure I’ll overlook opportunities. I believe that if I’m calm I’m more apt to come up with solutions. So, I’m choosing to be happy in the now, and focus on what’s working in my life rather than on what the headlines say.
Did you overcome difficulties by choosing to focus on what was working rather than what wasn’t. How did you turn your frown upside-down?
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