#coronavirus #COVID19 #FlattenTheCurve #retirement #savings #401ks
You’ve been laid off or furloughed.
You have no income, at least for the moment.
Federal stimulus, unemployment insurance etc. will help, but it may not bail you out entirely.
You haven’t got much, if anything, in savings, except, perhaps your 401(k).
You’d like to save it until retirement, but things are desperate now.
Carla Fried, from, suggests you consider four things before you tap that retirement nest egg.
Her article was published April 16, 2020, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Fried’s first suggestion: try reducing your monthly bills. Some people have subscriptions, or belong to things, they don’t use much. If that’s the case with you, cut some of those expenses.
Fried points out that the stimulus bill allows you to stop payments on student loans until Sept. 30. Most landlords will work with you on rent. Remember, many landlords have mortgages on the place you live in, and they are hurting, too.
Fried’s second suggestion is to understand the taxes you will owe if you tape that 401(k) early. Congress has allowed those tax payments to be made over three years, but you should not tap that money unless absolutely necessary.
If you have a Roth IRA or Roth 401(k), withdraw that first, she suggests, since you can do so without a tax penalty.
Thirdly, Fried suggests taking a few minutes to think about the future. “Before you tap retirement savings, try to slow down your racing brain. Imagine yourself at 65. At 70. At 90. That’s why you save,” the article says.
Finally, Fried suggests not rushing to make that, or any, decisions because you are laid off. Know that this crisis is temporary, and if you can weather it without drastically impairing your financial future, you’ll be better off for it.
Also, take a moment to think outside the box. There are many vehicles out there that allow you to spend a few, part-time hours a week to generate an income that could ultimately dwarf whatever you would make at a job.
They can allow you to rebuild your retirement savings over time, if you desperately need to tap into it now.
To learn about one of the best such programs, message me.
In summary, take a breath. Consider everything now and in the future before making decisions. These times will test our patience, but steel yourself to be up to the test.
Remember, too, that this situation is temporary, albeit indefinite. Some states are looking to open up certain businesses at the end of April or early May. Remember, too, that “normal” may not look like the normal you remember. Some jobs may not come back. Employers will learn from this experience, and find ways to do things that may save them money, and, perhaps, cost jobs.
For you, it’s best to wait before tapping your retirement savings, if you can, and look for other ways to generate income, if you need to.


coronavirus #COVID19 #FlattenTheCurve #OpenTheCountry #AloneTogether
We so want the country opened back up again, but don’t know yet when that can happen safely.
Close and close.
We hated to see the country close. We long for the days when we can get close again.
As much as we’d like to see the country reopen, let’s look at ourselves.
Do WE want to be more open?
It’s not an easy answer. It may take some effort to think about. But we SHOULD think about it.
Inevitably, when the country reopens completely, things are going to change.
Some companies, indeed some individuals, will have to adapt to new ways of doing things.
It’s been reported that as many as 50 percent of the jobs lost because of the pandemic will not return. Some businesses will not survive this short-term closure. Some companies will re-examine what they did during this time, to stay up to speed without violating guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Of course, they will want plans in place to combat another pandemic.
Don’t underestimate the innovation and creativity taking place during this time. Parents who work from home also had to help school their kids from home. So much communication took place without face-to-face meetings. There is potential for great savings for companies, schools and other organization if they can perfect remote communication practices.
Restaurants, bars and other businesses will need to get back up and running as they previously did. But even they may change practices as a result of this take-out-only time. For example, some restaurants allow ordering and paying online prior to pickup. What if you could order your meal, pay for it and have your food already prepared when you arrive to dine in?
All of these things will likely mean that they will eventually need fewer people.
Here’s a way, even before the country reopens, that you can be more open: consider checking out something that could give you a potentially great income without having to worry about whether a pandemic will cost you your job.
There are many programs out there that enable a person to work from home, whether there is a pandemic or not. (As a bonus, when the pandemic is over, you can work face-to-face, if you prefer that.)
If you’d like to be more open, and want to check one of the best such programs, message me.
Remember, as we long for things to be open again, we have to do it safely. That may mean remaining closed for a bit more time.
But while things are closed, why not think about being more open yourself?
What you know, and are content to pursue, may disappear very quickly. One day, you could be forced to find alternatives, some of which may be much less desirable than what you know or are content to pursue.
While we wait for the time to open the country, open yourself.
You won’t know what’s out there for you unless you open up to find it.


#coronavirus #COVID19 #FlattenTheCurve #solitude #loneliness
Even introverts eventually tire of solitude.
In this period of social distancing, even if you don’t consider yourself a “people person,” there will be things you will miss.
Leonard Pitts, columnist the Miami Herald, misses his Wednesdays, when new comic books come out.
In a column also published April 5, 2020, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, he discusses not only his introversion, but also the pleasures he’s missing.
Pitts writes that he thought the quarantine period would be easier for him than many of us.
It is, but …
Everyone has SOMETHING they enjoy that’s no longer part of their routine during this period.
For Pitts, it was the conversation at the comics store with other aficionados. That conversation, he points out, was about nothing serious. But, he still misses it.
So what are you missing?
Your job? Your office conversations?Hugs for friends and family? Meeting new people? Shaking their hands?
We know – at least most of us know – that distance from others is needed right now, lest the coronavirus spread worsens. We also know – at least most of us do – that it is temporary.
How temporary it is remains to be seen.
On the other hand, maybe you DON’T miss work. Maybe for you, your job is a necessary evil. Maybe you don’t have a job to go back to.
If you are among those who feel that way, and are willing to look at something that is so different you never would have considered doing anything like it, there are many programs out there that allow you to earn an income without a necessarily evil job.
If you have an open mind and are willing to check out one of the best such programs, message me. (As a bonus, you can even do it remotely from home, when necessary).
For Pitts, staying at home may have proved easier for him than others. However, he writes, “easier” is not “easy.”
Again, what’s not “easy” for you?
For some, who are trying not to go to the grocery store, it may be fresh fruits and vegetables.
A good piece of advice is if you must go to the grocery store, get in, get what you need and get out. Don’t linger. Stay away from others. Don’t browse.
In other words, to quote Moe Howard of The Three Stooges, “spread out!”
In normal situations, getting close would be a good thing. But until the pandemic passes, as the government repeats daily, “Do your part. Stay apart.”


#coronavirus #covid19 #jobs #layoffs #FlattenTheCurve
Employers of all sizes are in a bind.
Many have to stay closed to keep up with social distancing in the age of Covid-19.
Yet, they don’t want to lose the workers that made them successful prior to the spread of the virus, and will want them back when things open up again.
Jena McGregor looked at this issue in an article for the Washington Post. It was also published April 3, 2020, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“We don’t want our teammates to worry about their jobs during a time like this,” the article quotes Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan. “We told them there’s no issue; you’re going to be working now through year end. No layoffs, nothing. We’ll continue to pay everybody,” Moynihan continued.
Meanwhile, Chief Executive Marc Benioff pledged March 25 “not to conduct any significant layoffs over the next 90 days” and to continue to pay hourly workers while offices are shut down, McGregor writes.
The article points out that large corporations with big cash reserves are better able to avoid layoffs during the current crisis than small companies or those in hard-hit sectors.
Companies that were scrambling to hire people just weeks ago may also worry about getting caught without them once the worst is over, McGregor quotes Jeffrey Pfeffer, a professor at Stanford University’s business school.
Again, it’s a tough spot for employees, but also a tough spot for their employers.
Federal aid for both appears to be on its way, but may not arrive for weeks.
It’s clear not all of the businesses that were up and running before the pandemic hit will be able to recover quickly. Some may not recover at all, and will go out of business.
If this crisis brings uncertainty to your life, as it does for many, know that you have several options out there that allow you to make an income by not only working remotely, but also avoiding a lot of personal contact. And the bonus is that once the crisis is over, you can work these programs in a more face-to-face manner.
To learn about one of best of these programs, message me.
Meanwhile, above all, stay safe, stay in as much as possible and presume you are a carrier of the virus, even if you feel good.
The slowness and selectivity of testing may leave many carriers out there who may never know they are carriers.
Wash your hands frequently, and clean surfaces you touch thoroughly.
At the same time, stay in touch with folks, even if you can’t see them. Know that those you love, even if you can’t see or touch them now, appreciate hearing your voice or seeing your face through the various technical options for video conferencing.
It’s a tough time at the moment, but it will pass. We just don’t know when. And, we don’t know whether this virus, or some other, will shut us down again.
Staying free of illness and helping others do the same is all that matters right now. You can deal with the uncertainties later.