I couldn't have said it better myself...
The retirement account statement sits on the counter, unopened. You're too afraid to look.
The house across the street goes up for sale with a "lender owned" sign dangling below. You look away. You'd rather NOT know the price.
And when you try to trade in your wheels for something newer and more gas efficient, you pretend the dealer is talking to someone else. Someone with a much older, much crummier car than yours.
Assets to assets, dust to dust?
If Scarlett could just go home to the red earth of Tara when everything seemed to be lost, where should we go?
Back to work, of course. Back to where real work produces real wealth. The kind you can spend. Not the kind you brag about at a cocktail party.
I don't know about you but all that paper wealth I used to have never bought a single loaf of bread at the store. Maybe it even made me feel a little too secure and kick back a little too much.
I predict 2009 will be a year when business owners go back to the work of working on their business. There may be plenty of devastation. There may be dead bodies. Our economy may look like a war zone.
But we still have this: our business.
We will love our old customers more, and we will strive to add new customers. We will get there earlier. We will leave later. We will take this new economy and devise new ways of doing things. We will discard systems based on an economy that no longer exists.
We will operate by being LEAN. Not by being MEAN.
We will learn more. Read more. Become more focused.
We can't control everything, but we can control our business. To feel in control is to feel empowered.
Unlike the beginning of 2008, now we have survived the war. We are still standing. We will apply what we have learned and adapt.
Things are different, but that's okay. The biggest advantage of all is the fact we can change on a dime. We are flexible, unlike big companies and giant corporations. We are street smart. We know because we are in the trenches, not in the boardroom.
No one can fire us, but we have no one to blame but ourselves if we fail.
When business is good, everyone is too busy for things like customer appreciation, customer service, and customer contact. Who needs networking groups, referral partners, advertising, newsletters and new ideas when there is so much low hanging fruit? And where somewhere in the misty background, your assets silently appreciate, giving you a false sense of security?
It is time to fertilize. To prune. To water. There is fruit to be harvested from that red earth.
We have realized paper assets will not save our ass.
But there is still Tara.
And I'm going there.
Written by Janet Guilbault, California Mortgage Lending Specialist Based Out of the San Francisco Bay Area