Hello world. This feature contains a brief video from Econ4 highlighting the substantial need for a shift in the societal paradigm based around mass consumption and the unsustainable nature of mass production. It is widespread knowledge that people in their thirties and below will be the first generation to have mean incomes below that of their parents, so there is certainly a need for dramatic discussion around how our society operates. Moreover, this video questions the basic economic problem of the fact that wants are infinite and resources are scarce. So if there are methods that can improve this, then it at least deserves your attention.
Hello world. This weeks read comes courtesy of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA). There is a free download link in the link and the report outlines why Britain’s economy is a long way off tangible growth, a subject I’ve spoken about at some depth previously. Check my pieces out here and here in particular. http://www.iea.org.uk/sites/default/files/in-the-media/files/Will%20flatlining%20become%20normal%20.pdf
Technically we are no longer in a recession, but the slow economy, the stagnate demand and the prolonged miserable feeling in society does make it feel as if we are in one. In the likely event that there will be recessions in the future, follow these steps and you’ll have more than enough tools to make the most of what are difficult times.
1) Stay positive. Maintaining a positive mindset is critical to ensuring the negative economic activity does not have the desired impact. Yes one must be realistic and admit things like credit will be harder to obtain and jobs are more difficult to get. But staying positive about what you do already have, i.e. a good education and ambition should provide a solid foundation on which you could make yourself exempt from the negativity associated with a recession.
2) Work hard. Nothing can beat putting in a solid shift and few things are as rewarding as when you focus on a goal and achieved it through sheer hard work. Moreover, the difficulties of the current situation ensure that there has never been a more important time to work hard. It sounds a little condescending, but rest assured, it is a quiet and effective remedy that could set you apart from others. It applies to any field, any occupation and it has proven results. Working hard is even more important during a recession. Hard work always pays off.
3) Try to save for long-term gain. As there is less economic activity going on, the majority of society is simultaneously feeling the effects of less demand; therefore people’s consumption patterns tend to be the same. Therefore, now is a better time than any to put some money away. This idea may seem paradoxical in nature, the fact is when an economy has weak demand you want people spending, not saving. However, on a personal level, those that have utilised savings in the past often enjoy consumption more, mainly because they can afford more, because they have saved. This step does involve sacrificing certain goods or activities but if you think long-term, then it will prove to be an essential method of making yourself recession proof.
4) Invest in yourself. This is open to interpretation, but investing in yourself, i.e. increasing your skill set is a valuable way to make yourself more employable, make you feel better about being you and you’ll have a new skill/skills for life. People should always look at ways they can improve. There are thousands of free online courses, podcasts, ebooks and so on out there for people to utilise. Gone are the days where education was exclusive to classrooms. Make the most of it.
5) Pay attention to the media, but put issues in a personal perspective. Ensuring that you are well-read, clued up and know various facts about an issue will help you deal with it a lot better. However, there is a real danger that the media goes from informing to dictating certain views and on economic issues, this can be detrimental. So always remember to take issues on the economy with a pinch of salt as the news deals in aggregates and cannot accurately factor in individual households. You can however, so ensure to use the media to your advantage.