Since the unwelcome intrusion of Covid-19 in 2019 and the subsequent commencement of Russia’s war against Ukraine, global economic variables have been out of gear, particularly with regards to inflation and growth. In Ghana, a debt crisis coupled with extraordinarily high inflation has inflicted significant levels of distress on the incomes of the average Ghanaian, aggravating the impact of the global situation. Both at the national and individual levels, we have no choice but to face reality. As individuals, we may not have the leverage to influence what should happen at the national level but there are some positions we can take to enable us navigate the storms of the season.
Choose to maintain a positive attitude
Attitude is everything. Attitude does not change reality but it determines how we see reality. Attitude determines how we respond to reality. Attitude determines the extent to which reality affects us. One way to survive a storm is to purpose in our minds that we shall not allow the storm to drown us. we may not instantly know how we are going to prevail but we should muster the faith and confidence to say to ourselves that, “Come what may, we shall make it.” That posture tunes your mind to explore ways and means by which we can succeed. It prevents us from throwing our hands in despair. It hardens us with hope and energy to press through the difficulties.
Conduct a lifestyle audit
As things get harder, we have to pause and examine our lives. Are there things we need to stop doing? Are there things we need to start doing? Can we find better ways to use our time? Can we review and adjust our expenses? Can we stop hanging out with people who do not bring us much value? We cannot live the same way we used to live before we were plunged into crisis. If we want to emerge from crisis stronger, or even just survive through a crisis, we must certainly alter certain aspects of our lives.
Construct a reliable support system
A three-fold chord is not easily broken. During the moments of crisis, it is helpful if we have people in our corner to provide safety nets into which we can catch our breath. Stay close to family, maintain a circle of friends who are supportive and be cordial with work colleagues. Don’t be a lone ranger. Lone rangers are easy prey for the lion in the jungle but those who stay with the pack benefit from communal protection. Lions do not hunt big prey individually but they often work together as a pride. To be insulated from the effects of the storm, we must ensure that we have a support system. As we seek to hunt in the jungle, a healthy partnership with our support system increases probability of survival and success.
Cultivate new skills
An obvious impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been the disruption and alteration of industries and careers. Although there have been job cuts, there are emerging dynamics that have become crucial for survival in the post-covid era. Remote work, freelancing and virtualization are increasingly becoming trendy. To remain relevant in the new world, we must adapt our skills and the way we work. The traditional idea of nine-to-five full time job will no longer be predominant in the emerging world of work. Competition for jobs will be more globalized as AI and digital technologies such as cloud computing become more democratized while some jobs and skills become obsolete. When the storms cease, will you still have a job? Or will the storm sweep your job away?
Create a new vision
One of the factors that separate those who thrive during a crisis and those who crash is in what they see beyond the crisis, not just what they see in the crisis. Is it possible to imagine how we want life to be after tough times? Or must our vision be limited to surviving the times? If we limit our vision to surviving the times, what will our reality be when the tough times pass? Rather, each one must carve a mental picture of the life we want after the crisis. That picture helps us to weave through the tough times so we can experience the reality of the picture.
About the author
Terry Mante is an author, corporate trainer as well as business development and management consultant. Connect with him on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and TikTok @terrymante