It’s absolutely no secret that the economy is in the pits. CNN reports America has suffered the worst job loss rate since 1945, post WWII. Fast forward to 2009 and the facts read as follows; over 6 million jobs lost, and the unemployment rate is 7.2%. So much for a “booming” economy… the bubble has absolutely burst!
We know how the downturn of the economy is impacting our savings accounts and 401k plans but how is this drowning economy affecting relationships across the board? STRESS is the strong emotion that surfaces when most people share the words economy and relationship in the same sentence. I’ll share with you what I know the economies impact on relationships in addition to sharing some “economical” tips to help your relationship through the recession.
The Married Life-
How’s the economy impacting marriages?
An economy in a recession can put extreme amounts of stress on a couple. If there is loss of one income in a two income household, the pressures of survival are magnified. If salaries are cut by employers, lifestyles are altered in addition to the “love connection” between two people. When the bills keep pouring in, love and love alone isn’t going to get them paid.
So how is the economy really impacting the world of relationships? Although, stress levels may be peaked in relationships across the country, divorce rates are actually decreasing. Due to a lackluster economy and unstable job security, couples are deciding to “work it out” in their marriages and stay together for “financial” support purposes. In other words, divorces cost money, and right now isn’t the time to take on the expense and added stress of dividing assets, time off work for court appearances, and of course you can’t forget attorney fees as well. The bottom line is that couples are realizing that their “bottom line” i.e., 401ks, shared money market accounts, shared real estate have been severely impacted by the downturn of the economy. It’s cheaper, smarter and less stressful to stay together and higher a Relationship coach to improve your relationship. The following are a few tips to weather the economic and marital storm you may be dealing with during a recession:
1. Re-connect and Re-invest in one another- At this point you may not be in the best position financially but, the situation may offer a silver lining for your marriage. It could be because you’ve been so disconnected from each other that you’ve forgotten how to meet ones mental, physical and emotional needs. Staying together for financial purposes could also offer you the chance to re-discover each other and start re-investing in the relationship you once had that brought you together in the first place.
2. Seriously…higher a coach! The situation you’re in is already stressful and now do to financial strains you’re forced to stay under the same roof. Perhaps getting support from a professional third party could be a great way to turn things around in your marriage. Coaching is a powerful practice and is solely used to move people forward in life in a positive, progressive manner through support, validation, acknowledgment of feelings and asking empowering questions. The answers are within you and a coach will help you pull them out.
3. You already know what you can’t do; now focus on what you can do during these tough times. The stock markets and the economy and the layoffs are all things you absolutely can not control. Stop stressing over it! Step back and look at the positives in your situation and focus on those. This will help you both relieve stress and anxiety over matter you can’t control and, gain confidence and appreciation for the successes (no matter how big or small) you have. Before you know it, the both of you could be smiling and again and on the upside of a 2nd chance at happiness with each other.
The Dating Scene-
How’s the economy affecting the dating scene?
It’s interesting to say the least. One might immediately believe that since the economy is deteriorating that dating would falter as well. I suppose it depends on the type of person you like to date or what you’re used to when you take someone for a date. For example, if you’re a person worked for Merrill Lynch and your standard date involves pricy cocktails, appetizers, a four star entrée, topped off with an evening of dancing and a carriage ride in central park but, now you’re in a two bedroom apartment with three roommates looking for work, dating may be a challenge for you at this time. If you’re a woman and you’re used to similar expectants, well, dating may a bit challenging for you too.
However, all things considered just because the economy is bad it doesn’t mean dating has to go out of the window. In fact, some sources report (marketplace.com) that typically when the economy is struggling, most people search even harder for a mate to connect with, someone who cares about them and their needs. According to eHarmony, Match.com and other popular online dating sites, business is booming. Some are seeing double digit growth in their business because of the recession. It makes sense, when the economy is flourishing everybody is working, so there’s no time to date. When people are being laid off on any given day, there’s plenty of time to date. In addition, online dating sites allow people to connect through various vehicles of communication i.e., chat, email, or via phone. There’s opportunity to make a true connection before you ever meet the person face to face. This cuts out all of the expenses of a typical date. Two people can match up online, make a connection, meet for the first time and rent a movie from Blockbuster. Sounds like a pretty good deal! Allow me to share with you a few simple and economical tips on dating during a recession:
1. Meet someone you like and just be yourself (not much explanation needed there)
2. Think outside of the box! Dating doesn’t have to be about fancy restaurants and bright lights. When you meet someone and the two of you have a nice connection, plan for a picnic somewhere the two you have never gone before. It’ll be a great way for your connection to get stronger.
3. Have fun! Don’t let reduced income or economic instability prevent you from living your life. It’s best to control what you can control and work with the finances and other resources that are available to you. Show your new friend a good time and include yourself as well.
Life has a funny way of working things out. The economy at one point was shaking and moving, rocking and rolling, and because there were many things that were mismanaged, poorly handled, overlooked, and ignored it ultimately collapsed. Now, with hopes and efforts of rebuilding the economy to be better and stronger than before, most of the attention is being focused on it. The fact is, the economy will readjust and bounce back. Relationships are very similar. Often, people become consumed will all of the rocking and rolling so much that many things in our social lives and marriages get mismanaged, poorly handled, overlooked, and ignored until ultimately they collapse. Make your relationships “recession proof”. Take the time and readjust your life so you may enjoy it with the one you love for a lifetime.