CHANGE ISN’T ALWAYS WHAT YOU WANT

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi

Today, more than ever, change is constant.
Sometimes we see it coming. Often, we don’t. Regardless, we wonder what we could have done about it, presuming the change isn’t good.
Some things are beyond one’s control. Some things are totally within one’s control.
If change is beyond one’s control, how one responds to it is totally within one’s control.
One certainly can’t control the weather, and, as this is written, weather is severe in some parts of the United States. We can control how we prepare for and respond to severe weather.
Have you been through some change lately? If so, how are you dealing with it? Are you trying to reconstruct the past, or are you figuring out your place in the future?
Are you expecting change? What are you expecting? How do you feel about it? Is it going to help or hurt you? Most importantly, what are you doing now to prepare a response?
Are you expecting no change at all for the foreseeable future? Don’t be blindsided. Change IS coming. You may not know what the change will be. Therefore, you have to think of the worst change that could befall you, and prepare your response. What if you lose that job you think you are so secure in? What if your spouse walks out on you? What if there is an unexpected death close to you? What if YOU die?
All of these things will require a response. The good news: you can prepare a response in all these scenarios. At the time of the change, emotions will run high. That’s no time to think about how to respond. We don’t want things like these to happen, but they could – and they might. There are many prudent actions to take BEFORE they happen. Have a plan. Write it down. Have appropriate financial safeguards in place. Have appropriate insurance – yes, that goes for health insurance, even if you are young. Insurance is an investment, even if you don’t use it right away. Penalties are throwing money away.
Remember, in regard to your job, company ownership can change. You can get a really bad manager. Companies also reorganize a lot more frequently than in the past, because of changes in the marketplace, technology etc. Even if you have a great job, and are good at it, any one or more of the above changes could kill your career. How do you prepare to unexpectedly leave your job?
You can be a good saver. That certainly will help. You can be a very careful spender. Remember that money you don’t spend stays with you. However, remember the difference between being “cheap” and being frugal. (See health insurance vs. penalty above).
There are ways outside of a job to generate income. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. It may be something you’d never thought of, but getting into it while you have an income – and before you really need it – could pay handsome dividends if the worst happens. Heck, it could pay big dividends even if the worst doesn’t happen.
Harkening back to Gandhi, you may not like the world as it is. You may love the world as it is, but don’t expect it to stay that way. If it does, that’s your good fortune, since you can’t control “the world.” In either situation, there are things you can do to make the world a better place, and secure your place in the future.
Don’t let circumstances beat you. Prepare for the worst and expect the best. You will be so much better for it.
Peter

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