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since 1995


By Michael Angier

We’ve Decided
Not to Participate 
in an Economic Slowdown

Although I’ve been invited countless times by the media and a few gloom-and-doom economists, we here at SuccessNet have declined the invitations.

It’s not a party we want to go to. The company isn’t very good and the conversation is negative. I doubt the food would be to our liking and certainly the spirits would be lacking.

Is it really a choice? Can we really elect not to participate in a slowing economy? Isn’t the economy something that happens TO us? The answer is yes, yes and no.

The economy, like our money, is based on faith.

Here in the US, our currency bears the words “In God We Trust”. And we’d better—because there certainly isn’t enough gold or silver behind it to make it worth what it says it is. Instead, the value is in the faith and trust that our citizens and the rest of the world have in our ability to deliver.

Our economy is also based on faith. If we have confidence the economy will grow and things are looking good, we buy more goods and services. If we have doubts, we hold back, and the economy suffers.

You could see it coming. The media (perhaps hungry for news with a stalled election and fewer political scandals) started looking for holes in our burgeoning economy. Any layoff, any business closing, any lower-than-anticipated-earnings-report got widespread attention. Things had been going so well for so long, there just HAD to be a recession coming. It was just too good for the news media to believe it could be sustained.

The ebb and flow of our economy is a natural process. Nothing grows—or declines for that matter—in a straight line. There are always plateaus and sometimes losses in the course of long-term gains. One could argue that the stock market—being overvalued, especially in tech stocks—NEEDED a correction.

Ok, so much for the global view. What can we as individual companies and people do about it?

I, for one, simply refuse to play. I don’t talk about a downturn—except in this instance—and I don’t BELIEVE in a slowdown.

I’m not hiding my head in the sand. I recognize that the market is down. I see our mutual fund’s value decreasing or holding steady. I read about and observe that some businesses are eliminating jobs and some even closing their doors. But that’s been happening even during the so-called bull market.

However, I also see new businesses starting. New jobs being created, companies becoming more efficient—and consequently, more profitable. I also see our own web site traffic and our business growing at over 30% a month.

The media is in the news business and, unfortunately, bad news sells better than good news. So be it. But fortunes are made in good economies as well as bad.

It all depends on where you want to place your focus.

And what we focus on expands. So watch what you say to yourself and to others. Be mindful of what you think about and read about. Keep your attention on what you want—not on what you don’t want.

I’m choosing to focus on what works and what could work better. There are opportunities all around us. These times simply require more innovation, better perception and a keener eye toward change and how it affects our endeavors.

Our current economic climate calls for us to bring out our best. There’s no time for wallowing in past losses. The past does not equal the future. We need to practice one of the slogans of the Marine Corp—FIDO—“Forget it, Drive On.”

No, I won’t be attending any pity parties of the “gloom and doom club”. I’m too busy growing myself and my businesses.

I still maintain that the years ahead promise to be the brightest, most prosperous economic times the world has ever seen.

We’re celebrating every success, acknowledging every milestone and improving everything we find that’s less than excellent.  And we’re having a blast.

Make it a great day.

For a related article, see 
The Top Ten Ways to Exploit The Roaring 2000s





"One of the first and best things you can do to help the poor is to not be one of them."



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Last Updated 01/30/2004