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Uncertain Times



The Challenge of Resiliency

The sudden rise of the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the world. Many families and individuals will face certain economic hardship, personal loss, and more during the duration of this outbreak. The effects of stay at home orders and public health policies have forced businesses both small and big to close their doors. Mass lay offs are leaving millions of hospitality and service workers without income and struggling to make bills, rent, and basic needs. Quarantines can be a useful tool in containing a pandemic, but can be averse to the mental health of those stuck inside, especially when financial pressures are mounted.

While many businesses remain closed, and our essentials workers keep our stores stocked and medical facilities functioning, one industry remains open. In times of hardship, it is easy to look for a quick fix, but predatory lenders like payday stores or cash advance locations can often end up harming the borrower more than it will help. Interest rates of fifty, one hundred, or even five hundred percent can essentially ensure the borrower may never recover from their position, especially in a time of limited income. These lenders also find their way online, taking advantage of those that are desperate for relief.

If you are experiencing a financial hardship, avoid predatory lenders and instead look for alternatives for income. Many businesses are still hiring and thanks to modern technology, working remote and keeping yourself out of risk is possible. Job sites show a rise in demand for Customer Service Representatives, Online Educators, Health Insurance Enrollment Specialists, Accountants, Software Engineers, and more remote occupations. If you are willing and able to venture from your home, many gig economy jobs are still active, like Shipt and Door Dash, which not only pay well during this crisis, but also offer treatment costs in the event you are affected by the virus.

You may also find help in the care of your community. There are Non-Profit Organizations, State Programs, and lending communities that can potentially be the saving grace to your hardship. While rent, mortgage, and utility relief is still being debated, you may find that many of your lenders and landlords will be willing to negotiate temporary deferments, discounts, and other assistance. While there is no guarantee, taking the time to request payment delays from your debtors may save you hundreds of dollars over the next few months of financial frugality.

In a time where we are all shocked by the sudden change of normalcy in our lives, it is essential that we pull together. Unity and resiliency will be the keys to staying secure. Be mindful that Mental Health must be taken seriously throughout this crisis. We must check on our loved ones, have tough conversations, and seek support – this is the key to keeping our sanity. Humans have a natural knack for surviving adversity and this crisis will pass in time. Remember to use all of the options available to you and avoid those who might seek to profit off of your hardship. Together, we can rise from this problem – now more than ever use kindness, patience, and connection to heal each other. If we can find a way to stand stoic and prepared throughout the coming months, we will no doubt find ourselves returning back to normal life stronger than ever.