Discover our App

Centerpointe Research

little red hen

Give Me A Break

Sunday Morning

Sunday Morning (Photo credit: jspaw)

Modern society has its disadvantages.  Sunday used to be a day of rest.  Stores were closed.  No one worked or did business that day.  It was a time for worship, recreation, and rest or R and R.  There was time for naps, reading the Sunday paper, socialization at church, and family gatherings.

When it got dark in the evening, it was difficult to see to do work or travel.  Things shut down at sun down.  You put your eight hours in in the day and you had your nights to yourself.  Now we are busy almost every evening doing things we didn’t get done during the day or attending activities.  Families are so over scheduled these days that kids and parents are not getting enough sleep and their stress levels go up.  Bread winners are working overtime and young people can’t have just one after school activity or a weekend job.

Families don’t get to see each other or when they do they are part of a huge audience of like-minded parents and don’t actually get to spend time with their kids.  Teenagers disappear to attend extensive practices and work lots of hours.  A family meal is a thing of the past.  Working parents are not going to prepare supper somewhere in the middle of this time crunch and a lot of fast food gets eaten.

People don’t have conversations any more and take a break to spend some time catching up with friends.  Time that used to be spent talking on the phone is spent texting and waiting for a reply and catching up with social sites on the internet and playing games on apps on phones.

Teenagers, and probably adults too, are also not getting enough sleep as electronic gadgets and artificial light are keeping them awake and interfering with the production of melatonin which would help them sleep.

Related articles

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Cost of Living Affects People Unfairly

Money cash

Money cash (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

empty pockets

The percentage of their income that many people are paying for the cost of living in this economy is unbelievable.  Have you ever considered the gap between the cost of things in our economy and the ability of many people to pay for them?  The gap is getting bigger and bigger between what one group of people consider a reasonable amount of money for something and what another group of people can hardly imagine paying for something.

Because of how the cost of living effects them, more and more people are cinching their belts, doing without, and buying things on the cheap, or recycling somebody else’s trash.  This is the new group of poor which is being  being created by the number of qualified people who can’t get a job and the retires who find that their social security check, pension fund, and/or savings have shrunk in terms of what costs they can expect them to cover.  For example, paying $600 a month for house and car insurance may not seem like a lot when you are making $50,000 to $75,000 a year; but it seems impossible when you are on a fixed income of $10,000, $15,000, or even $20,000 a year.  Yes, there are people on social security who are getting less than $900 a month.

Many costs of living keep going up and up and we expect people to be able to pay them.  Costs to farm and raise a crop or a herd of beef, dairy cows, etc. are jaw dropping.  The profit margin keeps getting smaller and smaller.  Big business handles this by raising their prices and expecting somebody to pay them.  How have we come to accept this as normal?  I can tell you why people are buying imports from China, they can’t afford anything else.  Quality goods that have a longer useful life and home repair, maintenance, and appliance upkeep are unaffordable.  We have learned to skimp on things where we can (like using the dollar menu at the drive-through) and to do without things (that many people now consider a necessity) like a cell phone or inter-net access.

How did we get into this mess?  How did we come to accept the increasing inequality of the ability to pay the cost of living in our society?  We expect the little people of this country to pay the same big prices for some things that in reality only the disappearing middle (or upper class) can afford.  As Marie Antoinette said, “Let them eat cake.”  Where has the American Dream gone?  We thought this was ancient history, a time when royalty expected non royalty to pay starvation tax rates so royalty could live a gracious life style while wearing a blindfold when it came to seeing how this was achieved.  Power versus love.  Materialism.  People whom we have given authority to make decisions that are in our best interest are not doing it.  I would rather have a stove that works than pay for some government agency‘s meeting at a resort, wouldn’t you?  The Little Red Hen story also applies here too.

How have we come to accept this, this inequality of the ability of the citizens to pay the costs of living in our country?  Do you think that most of us should pay exorbitant prices for gasoline, medical insurance, and prescriptions and get by on little or nothing in the rest of our lives?  What is scary is that this may have been planned and controlled by the powerful and the wealthy in this country to be this way and we (like they thought we would) have come to accept this without protesting.  I know I have.

Once I made enough money to cover the cost of living and have a little left over; but now I don’t When it comes to eating out, I usually don’t.  For example, spending around ten dollars, tip and all for lunch is the max and is reserved for special occasions.  It is something that I do very infrequently.   When I am in town, I usually just get a drink and I am very selective about where I buy that.  I spend very very little money on clothes and as far as updating any rooms in my home like I see on HGTV, it ain’t gonna happen.  Lots of things don’t match, show a lot of wear, and are an eye sore.  I think my car would almost qualify as an antique.

For other things which are part of the cost of living, I pay what the economy demands.  This includes insurance premiums, utilities, gas, household supplies, but not food.  We have what we can afford that will stretch, not what we want.  When it comes to meat, we are very frugal; and we still cringe at the going rate for things like chicken wings and hamburger (but pay it anyway).  For a lot of things, we don’t have much choice, either pay what they ask or do without.  What happened to competition?

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

How You Give Things Away

homemade-bread-800x800Do you know when you give things away?  Do you give things away without knowing that you do.  Maybe you don’t just give things away for free but maybe you don’t sell them for what they are worth.  Are you aware of what you are worth?  Do you have something of value to sell?  Can you actually afford to give this stuff away?

If you are aware of how you give things away, then you can get in control of what and how you give things away and you can do so when you can actually afford to do so.  Have you heard the story of the little red hen who grew the wheat, made the bread, and then gave it away, but did not keep any for herself  so died of starvation and could no longer provide the bread for others.   Of course, the little red hen even liked to grow the wheat and make the bread; but she could not keep doing this when she did not get anything in return and ran out of resources to do it.

One way that you give things away is by offering free samples; but you need to leave your audience wanting more.  This is when you offer to sell them more by getting something from them.  You have to sell it for more than the cost of the ingredients because your training and experience, your knowledge, your time and energy are worth more.  In order to develop new products, to offer quality services, to make improvements in your existing product, and thrive, you must price your product appropriately.

Everybody does not know everything and there is a good chance that you know something about something that is not common knowledge and could be worth an appropriate amount of money to other people who need this knowledge.

Enhanced by Zemanta