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Apr 24, 2011
 – You know all too well that the economy issues have taken its toll on the country. But there is always a silver lining, and the economy is not immune. While the media loves to cover all things negative, there are actually some good things that can come out of a bad economy. You may not hear much about them, but they are there, and if you focus on them, the rewards will be immense.

Here are 7 reasons why a bad economy is actually a good thing:

1.   Strengthening relationships. When the economy is good and you are buried in business, you probably don’t get to spend much time nurturing relationships. Whether it’s with your family, friends, or those you would like to network with more frequently, now you have no excuses. You can give the time to strengthening those relationships and help reduce stress as the same time.

2.   Scrutinizing spending. As an entrepreneur, you are probably pretty free with spending when the economy is doing well. You don’t mind taking on some added expenses, even if there isn’t a return, because you are not hurting financially. During a tough economy, you will need to look at each expense and really determine if it will bring you additional value or a return. If it will not, ax it and you will help your company financially.

3.   Monitoring cash flow. During a strong economy people usually let the money fly, whether at home or at work. They spend freely, without giving it much thought. But during a down economy, you will be forced to keep closer tabs on your cash flow. This will make you better off financially at home and in the office. It will also help you learn to be better about making financial decisions.

4.   Back to the basics. A rough economy will get people back to doing more of the free or low cost basics that help to build strong families. Spending a lot of money going out to the theater for a family showing of the latest flick isn’t the only way to build strong family bonds and be entertained. You can rent a new release for a buck, pop some popcorn, and gather on the couch in your pajamas and save a lot of money. Same goes for your business—rather than putting out money on expensive parties, you can opt for low cost company picnic-type ones.

5.   Trim the fat. It’s the perfect time to take a look at where you are spending money and see what can be trimmed. There are likely things at home and at work that are getting your money that is completely unnecessary. Find those things, cut them, and don’t look back.

6.   Get creative. During a strong economy, most people just go with the flow and reinforce the status quo. But during a weak one, people will innovate and find new ways to do things both at home and in the business world. New business ideas will come out of this economic slump, and one of them could be yours.

7.   Do for yourself. During high economic times people eat out more, among other things, that they could do for themselves. By getting back into the kitchen to do your own cooking, you will have more dedicated family time, will spend a lot less money, and will most likely be eating a heck of a lot healthier.

These are just seven examples of the good that can come out of a tough economy. A poor economy will make you better at watching your money, tracking your spending habits, and even creating stronger bonds with people. In the end, you will likely emerge a happier, well adjusted individual that has a keen financial sense. And that, my friends, is a good thing!  (by: Mike Michalowicz)

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