January 11: “Is it Recession or Depression?”

tn_Sailboat“No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new heaven to the human spirit.”  Helen Keller

I love Helen Keller’s quote, and Sarah Ban Breathnach’s words in today’s entry are so appropriate, nearly 20 years later.  So many people are struggling financially today.  Financial hardship can cause great strife in our lives and relationships.  How can we keep financial difficulties from having a great negative impact on our daily lives?

“…it’s very easy to surrender to an emotional depression when a financial one occurs.  It’s easy to be pessimistic about tomorrow when today seems so bleak.  It’s time we put thoughts of lack behind us.”  Sarah Ban Breathnach

Sarah has the right idea:  attitude is key.  As Helen Keller notes above, a pessimist will not get too far.  But how do we maintain an optimistic attitude when life becomes hard?  For starters, a gratitude journal can help.  As we discussed the other day, writing down five things you are thankful for each day can make a difference in your attitude.  Some days entries may be as simple as feeling the warm sunshine on your face.  The point is, no matter how difficult life gets, there are always things to be grateful for.

Secondly, if you have done what it takes to discover what truly makes you happy, you have likely realized that true, deep contentment does not come from anything that you can buy.  Having this realization gives you such freedom from allowing financial pressures to weigh you down!  Being happy deep down in my soul in spite of external circumstances, and knowing that I have a Savior who has a plan for me that is bigger and better than anything I could imagine, is what keeps me from letting external pressures take their toll.

Have you tried a gratitude journal yet?  What difficulties or successes have you had in keeping today’s financial pressures from having a negative impact on the daily life of you and your family?  Share with us and find the help you are needing, or offer inspiration to your sisters and brothers who are struggling.