It has not been a smooth sailing ride as an adult so far, and the main reason for that is financials. Living in a capitalist world where people’s only objective is to get money is not for the faint of heart.
It challenges you to balance school, work, relationships, friendships, your mental health, kids (if you have any) and everything else. What makes it even more challenging is that in this money-driven world, nothing is accommodating to the continuing inflation to help us out.
I have only been an adult for three years, and I can attest that this is not fun. This is not like the TV shows where the main character finds themselves in college or just making young and dumb mistakes. In this economy, it feels close to impossible to make any mistakes, especially with money.
Life does not wait for you to get it together; it keeps on trucking, and if you are not on board, that is very unfortunate for you because the next train is always harder and faster to catch.
I believe part of the reason for these rising prices is the lag we were in during the pandemic.
Back in the great year of 2020, everything was put on pause because of the pandemic, and as a result, the economy and everything had to be paused as well.
Not only did the economy pause, but a lot of people are still bouncing back from it and/or changed completely such as extroverts becoming introverts. It persists, having lasting effects three years later.
Personally, it has been a fluctuating experience attempting to recover from the lockdown mentality. If I were to be honest, as I stated in my article 2024 is Coming Faster Than I Thought, I feel more like a freshman than a senior because I feel as if I never had the chance to automatically get back to business, and that makes me feel like I am falling behind.
It feels as if the world is trying to catch up on all the money they missed during the pandemic, and that obsession with money, money and more money amplifies the detriment to my mental health.
According to CNN, “People started shopping again. Demand went from zero to 100, but supply couldn’t bounce back so easily. When you pull the plug on the global economy, you can’t just plug it back in and expect it to start humming at the same pace as before.”
The way the United States of America operates makes it insurmountable to stay still for too long, so the longer we are stationary, the more work we have to put in to stay caught up with the rest of the world.
According to HBS Working Knowledge, “Prices in the United States rose at the fastest pace in four decades in January, adding pressure to the Federal Reserve to cool the economy before inflation undercuts wage growth and spending. Cavallo’s research sheds light on a question vexing economists, consumers, and retailers alike: When will prices return to normal? The answer depends on the type of product, and how quickly each individual industry recovers, says Cavallo.”
Alberto Cavallo, the Edgerley Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, also says that after the pandemic, the demand continues to rise even to this day while the supply is limited such as with food, oil, gas/fuel, food, and much more.
He also says, “The problem right now is that demand is increasing in a context of limited supply. So, if there are no more supply disruptions, I don’t see why we won’t get back to seeing the same level of product variety that we had before.”
The cost of living everywhere has increased and will continue to do so as long as the demand is high and the supply is low. It will also continue with the pulsating inflation rising and falling like a tidal wave.
It is easy to feel discouraged in the midst of the highest prices we have seen since the ‘90s, but regardless, it is important to stay grounded and to listen to your mind and body when you feel overwhelmed in this messed-up capitalist world.