Everywhere you go today (or any other day for that matter), there are people walking around lamenting the economy. They are waiting for an "economic recovery", talking about the recession, and seeing evidence to support how 'bad it is' everywhere they go.
There are also people who see it very differently. Their economy doesn't seem to be bad.
The difference begins with how you see it.
(Right off the bat, let me start by saying this: This post isn't about minimizing the pain that many have gone through. It is about shifting your perspective and bringing you to a more open frame of mind that can improve your own economy, so stay with me. Just open up one little corner of your mind to the possibility that it might be possible to make your own financial life and business a bit better, okay?)
What are you looking for?
- First off, as with most things, we view everything in life through our own lens. Yes, it all seems like reality to us, but EVERYTHING is subject to our own beliefs.
- If you listen to talk radio, or watch the news all day long, you probably think “the world is going to hell in a hand basket”, if you don’t you probably see the world in a different way. Our brains are wired to support our beliefs.
- We have a reticular activator in our brain that filters everything we see and hear to search for and allow in only that which is relevant to us and our beliefs. If you hear a commercial for a horse farm for example, and you aren’t interested in horse farms, it ‘goes in one ear and out the other’. If you hear a commercial for a great sale at a local auto dealership and you are actively looking for a car, you ‘tune in’. If you have told yourself 1000 times that “the economy sucks”, everywhere you turn you will ‘hear proof’ of that. You will tune in to every complaint, every negative news story, and every statistic to support your belief. I always say that the reticular activator is like that ‘best friend’ who wants you to be right, and doesn’t tell you what you really need to hear.
There is evidence everywhere to support every belief. Are you subconsciously looking for proof that it’s bad, or that it is still good enough to support you and your family?
When I went out to a local shopping center (Brier Creek) the other day, I’ll tell you what I saw. The deli was packed with barely a table to be had (at 2pm in the afternoon no less!). The parking lot was full, and there were plenty of people in line with non-necessities and even higher priced items. Everyone that I saw in line at the wine store spent at least $100.
If there were 1000 homes sold in your community last month, and you are in real estate for example, think about it! Do you really need more than that! No. In fact, you could do quite well with only one or two of those sales!
Recognize what numbers mean: I had a college professor that used to say: “statistics are like bikini’s. What they show is interesting, but what they cover up is vital!” Numbers are used to tell a story. A story that the person telling it wants you to hear. As Zig Ziglar used to say “why is it that weather casters always say 20% chance of rain instead of there is an 80% chance of sunshine?” Newscasters believe that we only listen to bad news, and will always skew the numbers to raise ratings. People who are sad and depressed will only talk about what is sad and depressing. Remember that there is always an opposite side.
Let’s look at a few of the ‘realities’ people talk about every day, and the numbers that go along with them…
“Everyone’s getting laid off. So many people are out of work…”
“Yeah, but there are a lot of business owners and others that aren’t on unemployment”
- The current unemployment rate is 9% – That means that 91% of the population is NOT unemployed!
- And many people have gotten promotions and raises too ( I know a few)
- Ok…even if you DOUBLED IT that would mean at least 82% are employed!
- There are also people who got laid off and started businesses, or started consulting and now make more money that they did at their job.
“People are only buying necessities. The high end market is gone”
“Tiffany, the luxury jewelry retailer, reported a 9 per cent increase in sales for the second quarter of 2010 over the comparable period a year ago”
“Neiman Marcus, the luxury department store chain, reported a 7.6 per cent jump in revenues for the quarter”
(From Financial Times)
- “Only some industries are doing ok”…or “Those companies that got bailouts are ok, but the rest of us are suffering…”
Barnes & Nobles sales increased by 42%
How about smaller businesses?
(These are local Raleigh area businesses)
I find this particularly telling and compelling. There are few industries harder hit during the past 2 years (IMO) than the auto industry, so I asked Tracy Myers to contribute whatever wisdom he would offer to you regarding this topic.
Here is what he had to say:
- AssistantAngel.com a virtual assistant company started in November of 2009 and was having to put customers on a waiting list within 6months
- Leslie Flowers, a personal growth facilitator - Business increase in 2010 = 75%
With the rest of the automotive industry in a downward spiral with no end in the immediate future, my car dealership had their best year ever PLUS was named the #1 small business in NC. Why?
Is it bad? Or is it less than it was?
I remember during the housing slump in 90's my grandmother (who was a Broker during the 80's when interest rates were 20%) put it in perspective this way;
"When you're used to going 120mph, and you drop to 85, it feels really slow, but it isn't"
Because my Team Members BELIEVE they are winners. They are successful because they BELIEVE they will be successful.
Napoleon Hill said it best: "Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. Thoughts are things! And powerful things at that, when mixed with definiteness of purpose, and burning desire, can be translated into riches. Use auto-suggestion, have faith, imagination and overcome fear and time is your opposite player as in checkerboard."
Simply by ignoring the "gloom and doom" being preached by everyone else and believing in the common goal of being successful REGARDLESS of what the economy dictates, we are able to have record opportunities which have translated to record profits. ~Tracy Myers (follow Tracy on twitter he is amazing!)
Did you know that
The Raleigh-Cary metro area is the No. 1 “healthiest” housing market in the country for 2010?
That Builders flock to scarf up Triangle land for homes - Triangle Busin... ?
We have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country?
“That may all be true, but it doesn’t change the fact that MY business is bad!”
If it truly IS 'bad', consider that it might not be the economy. It might be you!
(Ouch! That hurts to think about, but it may just be true!)
Are you still doing business the way that you always did?
The old adage "if you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always gotten" doesn't even apply anymore. It's supposed to mean that you won't ever get MORE, yet now you often don't even get what you used to!
There are many factors that come into play in today's world. The economy is just one.
Social media has changed the way that people choose and buy,
Corporate failures have changed how we trust,
The fear factor around the economy has changed how we buy and what we value.
A LOT more than the economy has changed!
The world has changed! It changes every day!
Has YOUR cheese moved!
(if you didn't get that, read "who moved my cheese" or watch this video)
Have YOU changed?
I’ll cover more on this in a later post! But for now, recognize that the first thing that has to change is the way that you are thinking, and what you are looking for.
For now, simply recognize that you may just be seeing clouds and no sunshine. That doesn’t mean it’s not there!
(It’s easy to do! Trust me! I could SO easily go into negative mode, and rant and rave about politics, the economy and who’s to blame, etc! That is EASY to do! But I know that would only make me feel like crap, and repel any hope of new opportunities or prosperity!)
- Are you still doing business the way that you always did?
- How have you adjusted, or reinvented your business to keep up with the changing times?
- Do you have a clear compelling message that speaks directly to a specific audience that you serve?
- Are your products or services still relevant, or do you need to update or change them?
- So, I choose to see that there are people buying. They don't ALL have to be. There are more than enough who are. I don't need them ALL.
- I choose to seek new information and wisdom, and grow myself so that I can grow my business.
- I choose to look for proof that there is enough to go around, and find people who are willing to pay for value.
- I choose to never utter the words “I can’t afford” (especially in front of my children!) and recognize that instead “I am not choosing to invest my money here at this time”
- I choose to find ways to invest my money in those things that will increase the value of me and myself, and therefore bring value to my family, and those around me.
- I choose to recognize that money must flow. Just as you must exhale in order to inhale, and I choose to remember these great words from the book “The Richest Man in Babylon”...
“A clenched fist is not open to receive”
I hope you will choose the same…and see YOUR economy change!
There are so many 'parts’ of this topic, I cannot cover them all in one post, but I will expound on them in future posts based on your comments.
(Stay tuned for a post on how to adapt to the new marketplace and how others are too!)
For original post, and more on how you can increase your value and share your message, visit http://www.HeatherO.com