With all the activity this week on US financial markets, I feel a strong need to say something about this. I would like to share my observations about the financial meltdown as it relates to each of us following our vocational passion.
First, it is clear to me we have become a society of money chasers. This is sad. This is especially true on Wall Street where greed, and the use of other people’s money, have consumed most firms on their quest for more and more.
The chase for JUST money has taken advantage of these firms’ workers and, of course, US taxpayers who will pay for this mess.
While I am not a financial expert or, (thank goodness!), a hedge fund trader, I can tell you it will get worse before it gets better. Within the next few months, more firms will fail, and the complexity of the mess will make the great crash of 1929 look simple. I wish I could tell you that Bank of America is buying Merrill Lynch to save jobs, but I believe many more jobs will be lost in the company’s quest for even more power and money.
All of this while: the economy plunges deeper into debt to foreign firms; the cost of gas keeps increasing; millions of Americans go without health care, and many more go daily without food; and the cost of education has, like every other business, followed the path of greed and spending. And then there’s the needless war that has gobbled up a trillion or so dollars — dollars that could easily have taken care of all or most of these problems.
So the average American is living this week with high anxiety, and the newly, or soon to be, laid-off traders on Wall Street wonder what’s next? Will there be anything left to trade? What to do?
It doesn’t amaze me that these financial firms have a one track mind, but the people who work in them need help — now.
So many people are suffering more anxiety now about living their lives without purpose or a plan. Many Americans worry about their shrinking retirement dollars, but they spend very little time pondering the course of their life and their work. I think they should be asking themselves:
Am I living a life of purpose?
Am I contributing to the things that are most important to me?
Am I living an authentic life?
How can I better align my abilities and interests, and work on things that I am deeply passionate about?
How can I establish a new path to make the second half of my life more fulfilling?
For many of the people laid off this week on Wall Street, this is the perfect time to reconsider their life and work. If I could wave a magic wand, I would create a system where people could simply barter their gifts — in the form of services and products — in exchange for other services and products they need. This would force people to look inside themselves and examine their path, passions, and purpose along with their natural gifts.
I hope smarter people than I will solve these financial crises with deep critical thinking and tougher laws and constraints.
But I will continue my own deep thinking, and I hope you do, too. Use this new crisis in America (and elsewhere) as an opportunity to reflect, plan, and act on building a personal roadmap now towards more meaning and fulfillment in your work. Your work can determine who you are.
I stand ready to help, coach, and guide you towards this new way of living and thinking. The best recession-proofing strategy is accomplished through living a life of passionate work, because you will never have to retire. Are you worried about where to put your nest egg now that Wall Street seems to be collapsing? I suggest investing in yourself now to fund your new plan, to give yourself a little time.
You will never look back, and you will become a role model for a new way of living.
Get ready for more crashes in our economy, but next time, you’ll sleep better at night because you have decided, instead, to invest in the most unique and special person in the world — YOU!