The last year or two have been extremely difficult for many of us. Why? Because ‘we’ were greedy. Not all of us of course but quite a few. More and more profits had to be made. Real Estate prices exploded in certain areas and some countries like the US and the UK allowed re-mortgaging which allowed people to take out more equity for the same property. Instead of investing that extra money, they spent it. More and more loans went bad. Greedy bank managers mixed these bad loans with some good ones and sold them off as a parcel to even more greedy bank managers – often in other countries. This is how the global banking crisis started.

Suddenly loans became difficult to get which put a lot of small and large businesses into problems. Consumers became more careful which slowed the market… Less spending, less jobs… less jobs, less money…

It’s a vicious cycle that was started by the greedy banks and financial institutions and the closed eyes of our governments. To stop large corporations and banks going bankrupt, governments stepped in and bought out a lot of the endangered companies with freshly printed money. I think I don’t have to tell you that this way of dealing with a financial crisis makes it even more dangerous.

Even countries who did not allow re-mortgaging like Germany became involved through the globalization of their banking and other financial institutions. When an enormous ecconomy like the US goes ‘bancrupt’ everybody is affected. Less money in the largest economy means less exports in Germany as an example. Less exports means less production, means downsizing, means less money for consumers, means less buying power, loss of jobs in retail…

I know this is a very layman explanation of what has been happening worldwide but I want everyone to understand that we are all responsible. Too many of us closed our eyes and enjoyed the ride. As usual the ones who are worst off are the ones who really had little to do with the situation. Life is not fair but we must take responsibility. Too many of us watched it happen. Maybe we did not know how it would happen but we all knew – if we ever thought about it – that we were living on borrowed money.

In the US people find it totally normal to max out their credit cards and pay it off bit by bit with outrageous interest rates, making their debt grow each and every month. If you are one of these people, stop doing that!!!

True, life is not fair but we are responsible. We are not the victims. We can change our circumstances. Maybe not immediately but eventually they will change if you change. Take this to heart because I too had a tough 18 months and am still not out of them but I am responsible to have gotten myself into the situation and I am responsible for getting myself out of it. If I can do it, so can you.

Take charge of your life!

Be well

Barbara