Standing firm in a crisis

NASSAU, Bahamas, Tuesday June 18, 2013 - How do we get out of dire economic straits and deal with the stressful environment which it produces?

Prominent financial specialist Zhivargo Laing noted “in today’s economic climate, this is the question too many are asking – with no job, no income, mortgage/rent in default, marriage on the rocks, children acting up, home destroyed by tornadoes or hurricanes, hope fading fast, and temptation all around.”

Laing recalled the latest crisis situation for many was not a new one: “Prior to the most recent global financial and economic situation many people in the world were facing tough times. The crisis has greatly swollen those numbers and made the circumstances that much dire for some.”

While these dire circumstances were difficult for adults and inexperienced young people, Laing lamented, “too many young women bear a double burden, as they become the head of their households when the fathers of their children go AWOL.”  

Laing, a former Bahamas finance minister, wondered whether “one of the great tragedies of leadership in our time was how unconscious it could be about the felt needs of the people being led.” 

While many leaders should be saluted for achieving real results, he regretted, “we see too many instances in which the egotistical posturing of leaders results in them not only being oblivious to the needs of their people but also sometimes trampling on those needs.”

While it would be helpful if more leaders were alert and responsive to the needs of their constituents, he asked, “what do you do when everything seems to be falling apart?”

Laing suggested as a start: “Do not tire of trying to find a solution to your problem. Somewhere beyond the grim realities of this treacherous hour there is a bright field of possibilities where your answer lies. Stay hopeful.”  

He adds that you should reach out for help: “The no’s may be many but it only takes one or two yes’s perhaps to solve your problem. Never mind the faces of the naysayers and down lookers, your quest is a solution to your dilemma and someone out there may offer it. There is generosity in the world, even if hidden at times by a mountain of unkindness.” 

A motivational speaker and leadership consultant, Laing encourages to stay in the present moment. “Nothing exaggerates troubles like imaginations of more trouble to come. Stay in the now where you can focus your energies on the sufficient troubles of today. Do not add tomorrow’s troubles which are not real and may never ever come. See yourself, your loved ones, your friends, your environment as they are and be right there with them seeking to overcome your issues.”

Next on his list is to accept your situation fully. “Not as an act of defeat or resignation but as a conscious decision of practicality. It is what it is and making it all consuming in your life or inconsequential will not help. It must be seen as a present dilemma alongside all other aspects of your life requiring that degree of sober attention necessary to resolve it.”

And when it seems that everything is falling apart, Laing says to pray. The lay preacher notes that “in this cynical world it is almost sacrilegious to say such a thing. But even scientific research bears out the benefits of prayer to the human condition, even if to give hope in a seemingly hopeless situation. If the star spangled banner and other flags can give inspiration to patriotic citizens in times of crises, why can’t the looking to the maker of the stars not do so even more? Prayer beats fainting.”

Laing reckons the world is a place of duality, where pain and pleasure, poverty and wealth live side by side. “Many have troubles and choke in the thick smoke of frustration and despair. Each of us may have some word of encouragement that we can offer to our fellow humans in their hour of challenge. We should do so, conscious that our day too may come and would it not be beautiful to have others do the same for us?” Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)