This article is not meant as "doom and gloom", but rather a sounding board for the difficulties that the world is currently facing, and a platform to express hope of the future.
Just a few weeks into the beginning of a global shutdown, and an eerie feeling settles in. Mobs at empty grocery stores, curfews, essential services are all just the beginnings to an unknown wait for relief. Governments do their best to quarantine the invisible nightmare and provide aid to businesses forced to temporarily shut down in order to adhere to social distancing rules. Citizens keep their eyes pressed against their devices as they search for insight as to what will happen next. Some work at home, go for walks and binge watch streaming video as they wait.
Stock markets fall as businesses remain closed. Nightclubs, schools, amusement parks, no longer see the light of day. Cruise ships remain in port. All temporary, but how temporary? Companies begin layoffs. People start to collect from unemployment offices. Prices fall, as flights outside of the country are limited, if even allowed. Employees, who are lucky enough to remain employed at businesses, get massive pay cuts.
Hospitals close and tents are setup in parking lots for testing. Minor procedures, visits and surgeries are put on hold. Many work toward a viable vaccine, but the proper procedures and testing could take up to a year or more.
For those living from paycheck to paycheck, this can be a life changing event. As the pandemic slowly reaches a month, bills will be due. Rent and mortgages require payment. People will be forced to break from social distancing in order to reach out to friends and family, looking for shelter.
Into The Darkness
As cities go dark, crime will increase and people will become desperate. The weight of the world lies on the shoulders of our leaders. Will they come together and conquer this problem as one, or will we tackle this issue in our own communities and in our backyards?
For those who have set money aside for a rainy day, the fear is, the length of the wait, and the possible repercussions. For those who have extra money set aside, it is the perfect time to start buying stocks from companies that can ride out the storm. Are you a gambling man? Those companies that DO bounce back may provide a great return on your investment in the long run.
But what will the world look like after this event? You can bet that those business that were struggling, will be permanently closed. There will be many people looking for employment and they won't be seeing the same pay that they were receiving before, for quite a while. How long will it take for businesses to bounce back? People have tightened their wallets and have gone into rationing mode. This includes spending.
Families are already looking at their monthly spending and are cutting out things that are considered a luxury. If you are jumping into survival mode, say goodbye to: Alcohol, cigarettes, sweets, buying things that you don't need. Are you paying hundreds of dollars for cellular plans and cable services? Thermostats are being adjusted. Some may even start drinking water from the tap.
If you need to sell something right now, you are not likely to get above value or at value for anything, if you CAN sell it at all. If you are a collector, you have to be in dire needs to be thinking about selling now instead of riding it out. Same with stock holders. It will take time for the stocks to get back to where they were.
Will the internet save us? Imagine what this experience would be like without it. Now imagine it without television or radio. With social distancing, it would be tough to get the word out and it would be much easier for people to panic. The speed and availability of information today is vital.
Will social media save us? Posting your status saves time and creates a one stop source of information for friends and family to check in on your well being. It really is the perfect way to stay in touch with everyone. This is also the most convenient way to keep in touch with friends in other time zones or on the other side of the world. News tends to travel faster on social media.
Into The Light
Be sure to stay in touch with your friends, families and support groups. If you need help, let people know during fixable stages, before it is too late (put pride aside). We are all experiencing hardships during this unique moment in history. Think of it as an opportunity for change, a reset. Often times we get too comfortable in our work and relationships even though we may not be happy, we just settle. This may be the "shaken awake" moment that we all need. Things WILL change because of this. This could be the opportunity that brings us all together. Follow your dreams and aspirations into the new tomorrow, that we create, when the world resets.
What could be the positive outcomes? - Share in the comments below
This is something that we should all be talking about because it is a unique situation. It may look like a simple couple of weeks shutdown, but could turn into something longer. If you are an expert that can lend advice or wish to share your experiences or just discuss, please post in the comments below. Here are some questions to consider... How has the global shutdown affected you? What is your insight on the future and your plans on financial survival? What is your positive spin on this? Are you a subject matter expert? What is your field and what is your advice? Share a link to additional resources. Please be civil and helpful. Thank you! Stay positive!