Wednesday, April 15, 2009

How Have I Been Reacting to the Recession?

Harvey Schacter writes about different consumer reactions to the economic pressures. The categories are a little tidy but made me wonder about my own behavior.

In most respects I'm probably under "Live For Today." I'm still eating what I was before, buying nice clothes when I feel like it, and willing to pick up a bar tab. But am I really living for today? That sounds so... frivolous. It sounds like the antithesis of someone interested in holding the personal finance ship steady.

I think a strong grounding in personal finance actually insulates against some of the broader economic pressures (and ensuing psychological stresses). Practice being rational with money makes you more rational in the face of challenge. Maybe he sees a young urban person living for today but I'd characterize my position as a young urban person who has positioned herself financially for good times and bad, and who has used finance to ensure consistent quality of life.

If you never live like it's a boom you may not have to live like it's a bust.

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