Entrepreneur's Corner, Personal Growth

How To Turn A World Tragedy, Into A Valuable Lesson

It took me a while to find the strength and the correct words to write this post. It was only a few weeks ago that the people of Japan experienced a tragic event unstoppable and unforeseen by no one. The tragic 9.0 magnitude earthquake struck on March 11th, 2011, leaving millions homeless and thousands with broken hearts with the lives of many of their loved ones lost.

I like many people have been keeping up to date and a watchful eye on the events that occurred in Japan. I am fortunate not to have been effected by this tragedy in a personal matter or have lost loved ones, but this event did strike a chord with me and it should with you as well.

Within seconds the world’s 3rd largest economy, after the US and China, Japan and its’ people were left with no running water and a very limited supply of food. And an even greater shift occurred within seconds Japan, the largest buyer of US Treasury debt after the Federal Reserve had to halt most of its purchases of US Treasuries, and as it rebuilds may likely begin selling what they currently own as they proceed with recovery process.

With the cash balance at the Treasury in the billions and an average spend rate equally just that, within hours we potentially faced a time when US government was less than 24 hours away from bankruptcy.
A few minutes. One unexpected event. One bad decision. One wrong word you regretfully say.

All examples of how quickly our lives and sustainability here on earth can be.

Now I have never been a fan of being “Miss Expect The Worst and Live Fearfully” , in fact I live by another motto “All Things Happen For A Reason” and in terms of fear of death and tragedy I have always felt “when it’s your time to go, it’s your time to go” despite how well you take care of yourself or how “careful” you are.
My grandpa, R.I.P, lived to his mid 80s, stronger than ever never visiting a doctor and drinking Tecate beer like it was his water, that does not mean I condone not caring for your body or being healthy, in fact I am very watchful of what I eat and how I care for my body, but it is not for the thought of this will make me live longer, it is more for the purpose of however long I do live, let me live it well and in the best health and shape I can possibly be in.

So why do I bring this all up?

I admit I went thru a serious of emotions during this event. My initial feeling was wanting to pack my bags and be a gypsy and travel and experience the world, spend time with loved ones and ditch all my professional projects. I thought, “Why bother when you realize how quickly you can loose your life?” Then I went thru fear. I was fearful of the threat this economy has on the US and radiation fears set in. Then I was settled and inspired by the reaction of the people and the recovery.

There is a lot to learn from how the Japanese are rebounding from this tragedy as they have from WWII. It has been very touching and educational for me to view these reports and videos. Just think, the Japanese people were left with no communication for several days. We can only think of how immature it is when we find ourselves stressing out over forgetting our cellphones at home or the price of gas increasing 5cents. We rant and go on a mini rage when our local restaurant runs out of that days’ special soup.

Unlike other countries, cities or societies that have faced similar tragedies there has been very little reports of violence, looting or aggravation. Of course I may add that their government has responded fantastically and has given people very little reason to revolt and to get angry, unlike other “leaders” who will remain unnamed…whose name starts with a G ends with a B…

The road to recovery of the Japanese is made up of massive amounts of character, resilience and dignity all of which are qualities we should work on and embody ourselves. It also reminds us that although we cannot predict tragic events there are certain things we can do to prepare for such a natural disaster. Below I share some things I recommend purchasing or always having available to you.

1. Bottled water and canned food, enough for 5 days
2. Flashlight and extra batteries
3. Battery operated radio
4. Contact numbers of your loved ones, banks, and other investment accounts written.
5. Cash available. Dependant on your economic level however I recommend having at least $1,000.00 available immediately. (“but Adriana, I have been struggling to save $500! How am I supposed to save $1,000?” I will share experts tips on how to make more money and save it)
I am always shocked at how so many people have less than $200 extra available in cash. It is time to change that.
6. Feminine and baby supplies.
7. Extra set of prescription drugs if you currently are taking some.
8. A secondary home you own in a different part of the country. Hey you never know if you ever need to leave the region. you can always live somewhere else! Brings a new meaning to the term “vacation home”. You may ask, “but I am not rich?” Not to worry. There are many ways and techniques out there where I will share with you how you can own property on an average salary.

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1 Comment

  • Chris Fellows March 30, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Great article. I didn’t know about the US Treasury connection. The US Gov is basically living paycheck to paycheck. Fragile is not good!

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