The current financial downturn has much to teach us. In fact the New York Daily News recently reported on a Charles Schwab study which found that the recession has made teens more appreciative of what they have and more aware of financial hardships.
It’s best to learn these lessons early. According to Willie Jolley, author of Turn Setbacks into Greenbacks: 7 Secrets to Going Up in Down Times, almost everyone will encounter a financial challenge during their lifetime. “If you live long enough,” writes Jolley, “you’ll eventually have some economic setbacks.” Jolley hosts a national radio show on XM Radio and authored another book on resilience called A Setback is a Setup for a Comeback.
Don’t dodge pressure. Embrace it!
Athletes feel pressure to do well before a race or a game. Pressure helps them focus on the goal of winning. Most of us avoid pressure like the plague. This is a mistake since pressure can bring out your best.
In Turn Setbacks into Greenbacks, Jolley lists several entrepreneurs including Charles Darrow who lost his sales job during the crash of 1929. While holding down odd jobs to support his family, Darrow developed a board game that focused on buying and selling property on the streets of Atlantic City, New Jersey. He secured a copyright for the design, which he later sold to Parker Brothers. Parker Brothers began selling Monopoly, a property-trading game, in 1935. According to Hasbro, more than 1 billion people in 108 countries have played the game designed by Charles Darrow during the worst economic crises the country has experienced.
Work for free
Volunteering your time may seem counterintuitive if your goal is to make a lot of money, however Jolley contends that volunteering is a way to create opportunities for yourself. And if you’re currently unemployed or if business has been slow, what have you got to lose? Even if you’re not hired by the organization you donate your time to, you will have obtained excellent contacts and references that will be useful to you in the future.
Keep your eyes on the prize-your future
Les Brown, business expert and author, is famous for telling audiences not to allow their current situation to define who they are. Jolley relays a story of traveling home from Florida after a successful speaking event. Despite his success, he couldn’t stop thinking about the money troubles he was experiencing at the time. All he earned for the speaking engagement was already spent. On the flight, Jolley met a man who seemed to be about 60 years old. He found out that the man was actually closer to 90 and he traveled the world giving lectures on health and wealth. During the course of their conversation the older gentleman said, “I am 88 years old, and my best is yet to come!”
“If an 88-year old man could see that his best days were in front of him and not behind him,” writes Jolley, “what in the world did I have to whine and cry about?”