Growing UpGrowing up, my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles all told me “when you grow up you can be whatever you want to be”. I believed what they told me and for the most part it has come true for me but, I know it has not come true for others. Growing up, only my imagination limited my scope of what I dreamed of growing up to be. I never considered my economic status let alone know what economic status was; it was not until many years later as a young adult did I understand the impact of economic status.
I, just as many of you, was taught to believe that if I worked hard, no matter what obstacles got in my way; with hard work I would achieve my dreams. To understand the idea of work and economics you must begin by examining your own reality – poor or privileged. You must realize that your economic status in society is not solely determined by how hard you work but also by social and economic factors such as equal opportunity, education, emotional disposition and your physical health – most importantly it can be determined by your level of determination to be successful.
Big PlayersThe growth of the Information Age and advances in communication technologies has changed the way people learn, work, live and play. Many senior individuals have been left behind because of the explosive growth in technology. The truth of the matter is that many people work very hard but are underpaid for their effort. In reality, it’s the large corporations and world governments that set the terms of trade locally and globally. Many factory workers and field laborers are exploited producing products that sell for large profits while they are paid minimum wage. Large corporations and nations make the money, and the worker struggles to get by. This seems to hold true for those in the lower stratification of society. Once stuck in a job it becomes almost like a drug. You need to keep working even for minimum wage to get the essentials you need, to buy the things that are nice to have, and to pay your bills.
Hard Work and RoadblocksSpeaking from personal experience hard work does pay. It also takes the right opportunities and the ability to take advantage of the situations as they come your way. Certainly it helps to be educated, but education is not a prerequisite to achieve great success. In the early 1970’s Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard, was unemployed talking to everyone and anyone he could asking for money for his idea for a new business. The rest is history.
Nothing that is worth something comes easy – it takes determination and hard work to be successful. However, even though everything is done correctly, with determination and hard work there will be failures that come as a result of outside economic factors. Consider the rise in the cost of petroleum based fuels. With the rise in fuel costs virtually every business and every individual in the world has been affected. Many workers are suffering from the high cost of essentials while remaining unemployed as a result of the 2008 economic meltdown while other workers still face the possibility of layoffs due to continued downturns in sales. The automobile industry has been brought to its knees unable to sell the products that just a few years ago were their best sellers requiring the industry to redefine itself. As a result workers lost their jobs and many remain unemployed or underemployed.
Cards You Are DealtTake what you are dealt in life and make the best of it. You have choices, and it’s what you make of your choices that count most. I have worked since I was 10 years old. In 46 years I have never been unemployed. Have I been lucky – maybe? True, I work to pay bills and buy the things I want but, I also work because it gives me great satisfaction. I like the feeling of accomplishment and being a part of something bigger than me. Today, I work at the things that interest me with my family always coming first and then the success of the company. Even when you own your own company you must strive for a balance between achieving success, your personal life and your company’s success.
Don’t use economic status, education, or the lack of luck as excuses for not achieving success. Everyone and anyone can realize success – it all depends on how hard you want to work for it and your level of determination to make it happen. Take the first step by deciding you deserve better; then let nothing stand in your way to make it happen.