”If wishes were horses, all beggars could ride.” That may be an old saying but it has a meaning to the condition afflicting most people in our economically-troubled world. Whether you are in North America or in the European continent, or in Australia or New Zealand, or in the continents of Africa, Asia or South America, the story is the same: citizens are dreaming of financial independence through lucrative careers or business enterprises, but are practically doing nothing to meet their objectives.
The world so to speak is full of dreamers who ironically were born and bred to fail in their lives if they were not careful to chart their own destinies. They want good marriages but they will not look out for principles that can help their unions to work. They desire to be in well-paying jobs but are not prepared to take relevant courses that can help them become qualified to hold those jobs. They dream of managing businesses that provide good financial returns but they do not indulge in feasibility studies that could help them understand or even learn the skills needed to run those kind of economic ventures.
That problem ideally begins early in life for most people .”We should not underestimate the impact a positive adult influence can have on a young person,” stated Martina Milburn, chief executive of the Prince’s Trust in the United Kingdom in December 2010. In January 2011 the Families Ministry reported that children not brought up in a two-parent family are 75 percent more likely to fail at school, 70 percent more likely to become addicted to drugs, 40 percent more likely to have serious debt, and 35 percent more likely to become unemployed or welfare dependent.
The December 30, 2010 Prince’s Trust youth index especially had a case to make in the way young people were being brought up in that country. Its findings revealed that young men with no male role models and young women without female role models were far likelier to go off track. According to the report these kids were 67 percent more likely to be unemployed and to stay unemployed longer. Young men are also 50 percent likelier to abuse drugs and young women to drink excessively. Young men are also statistically more likely to feel suicidal. They were also found to be twice as likely to contemplate or engage in crime.
Apparently, with such kind of an upbringing it is hardly surprising that many cultures in the world have growing numbers of people who cannot do anything for themselves other than live off both the sweat and resources of their parents, siblings, relatives, or even spouses.Joel Hilliker of the Philadelphia Trumpet based in Edmond ,Oklahoma, for instance wrote in the September 2010 issue that more than 600,000 British fathers are ‘homedads’ whose wives or girlfriends bring home the bacon. This Christian writer and Church minister also observed that “the trend looks nearly identical in Canada and Australia.”
In the United States, the number of people said to be receiving unemployment benefits has been increasing in extremely large numbers in recent decades. By march 2009, the figures “unexpectedly rose to the highest level in over 26 years.” In every week the number of people looking for that kind of assistance from the U.S. Government was a whopping 669,000. The figures pushed the number of Americans receiving jobless benefits to 5.73 million and climbing – according to a report by Reuters on April 2, 2009.
It is apparently easy to blame the economic recession that began in earnest in the United States in 2008 for the economic plight affecting large numbers of people in the Western world as well as virtually all the inhabitants of developing nations in the third world. But it is also a fact that in our post-modern world a large number of people portray a spirit of dependency rather than personal exertion and mobility. They generally think on terms of what they will get from their government or friends or relatives rather than what they can do to improve their lives.
Dominique Morisano – an assistant professor of clinical psychology at Columbia University in the United States was quoted not long ago by writer Sue Shellenbarger of the Wall Street Journal as having commented:”Even when students cling to lofty ambitions, they often set themselves up for failure by not aligning their behavior with their goals….” In the March 9, 2011 article by Shellenbarger, Mr. Morisano was also quoted as having observed in connection to these kids:”They might say, ‘I want to be a pediatrician,’ but they’re not attending school, they’re using drugs, they’re not taking care of themselves.”
The outcome of this sad and tragic behavior is hardly flattering. “The result is often hopelessness,” declared Mr. Morisano in the Wall Street article by Shellenbarger. His advice to these youths and certainly to everybody else is that “a belief in one’s ability to achieve goods is important to building a hopeful attitude.”
The same problem arguably not only afflicts youths in lower and upper institutions of higher learning and training, but also middle-aged adults hoping to make a success out of their lives. Its is ideally not unusual to see adults in a struggle for survival spending the little income they get to indulge in booze or drugs, or even engage in acts of sexual misconduct instead of using it on useful purposes that could get them out of the misery and suffering they are in.
Such persons apparently need not continue in a state of unemployment or continue to experience financial difficulties for long if they used the little resources they get to enhance their skills or even learn a new trade.
This ironically also goes for the 80,000 Britons that get at least 71 British Pounds a week from the government as “incapacity benefit” because of their addiction to drugs, alcohol or obesity, – according to government statistics published in April 21, 2010.
All dependent people have to do with the little money that comes their way from any source is to take a decisive action at saving something small and eventually use it for their own good. There are many people in the world today who made – or are making their fortune out of relatively small amounts of money. One of them is my millionaire-friend James Kariuki Kibuchi from Central Kenya who told a small gathering of Christian faithfuls July 2010 that his fortune came from Ksh 1,200 which is less than $20 U.s. dollars by current estimates. Ksh 200 was actually added to him by his mother.
Not surprisingly many individuals in the world can get out of the pit they are in financially an easy way. This should not be a difficult task as they imagine. They could even raise money to start a small business or some other income-generating venture in ways they never imagined they could. Observed Jim Hohnberger of Restoration International based in Polebridge, Montana, United States in the magazine Our Firm Foundation of march 1998:”Some of you could be wealthy holding a rummage sale.”
Twelve years earlier, JIm and Sally Hohnberger did hold a rummage sale that brought them $10,000. To reorder their lives they also resold their 3,000- square-foot house plus five vehicles and got out of debt. Together with their two small boys they moved into a 960-square-foot log home in the mountains and learned to simplify their lives. They had to heat with wood , cook on wood cook stove and preserve much of their food.
Granted, your case could be different from that of the Hohnbergers’ or the thousands of Britons receiving incapacity benefits from the government. But you can just as well take control of your life. All you have to do is take a decisive action to improve your life everyday of your life. In a couple of months or even years you will enjoy the results.
Ndungu Mungai is a relationship counselor, motivational speaker and health consultant based in Limuru, Kenya. email@example.com