What a year! Are we trembling in our boots, do we feel fearful and uncertain about what the future holds.

Even the weather has been erratic. Heat waves in countries where they have never seen it before and rains and storms in other places of the world. In the UK sun one day, and chilling winds and rain the next and this our summer. What is happening to our weather patterns and the seasons?

Even in Australia they had tropical downpours, floods and cyclones. The wettest weather for 100 years but this followed years of drought and water shortages. The dams were full and overflowing, the waterfalls were spectacular, the farmers were happy and the gardens a mass of flowers after their drenching. They say ‘every cloud has a silver lining’!

Ok, the money markets, repossessions, bankruptcy, tax, petrol, mortgage problems, everything keeps going up and up. We wonder how we are going to stretch our monthly pay to cover all this. How are you feeling, despair, and fear, anger that you work so hard and seem to be going backwards?

The banks and mortgage lenders were just as guilty offering us tempting loans, raising the credit limits and there really was the attitude of spend, spend, spend. Live for today and worry about paying for it tomorrow. The marketing people and advertisers presented it as normal that we should want a bigger house, designer clothes the economy is built on persuading us to spend to create more wealth for the government and large companies. We in fact got our priorities wrong and became the mad, bad consumers.

It has all happened before, in the 70s there was the 3 day week, petrol was rationed and people were struggling to feed their children. In the 80s mortgage interest was 15% and in the 90s there was a property crash but somehow, by tightening our belts and reducing our spending most of us came through it.

I see all this as circular, the weather patterns, the money markets. Once Asia and China were where the riches were, the west came next as manufacturing grew and now it is turning full circle again.

The truth is that we have never had it so good. We are wealthier, healthier and more asset rich than any previous generation. We are better educated and have more options in where we live and work, we take more holidays and our lifestyle has improved tremendously.

Taking all this into account, why then are we not happy with our lot? The last decade has been one of greed and consumerism. People wanting bigger houses, cars, luxurious holidays then a weekends away. Our clothes were recycled each year, the car lasted at least 10 years and food was grown in the vegetable plot. I am staggered by the amount of mortgage my friends have taken on and the number of credit cards they have, all maxed out. They have designer clothes, the latest TVs, luxury cars and both parents have to work to afford all this, and they have become time poor, their children suffer but worse, have come to expect it as their right with no thought of what effect this is having on the earth and the health of the next generation and their children’s expectations.

I can’t help thinking that we all deserve this blip we are now experiencing. It is the universe saying hold on enough is enough, It is a lesson we need to learn, we can’t have all this luxury without having to pay the price. By becoming a throw away society with a live for today behaviour we have become selfish and greedy.

How do we overcome all this? Well first we have to look at ourselves. Of course we need to get our finances in order and downsize everything, our spending habits our need for more and more. Reconnect with the simpler things in life – a walk in the park, a holiday at home, gardening, cooking nutritious food. Making more time for relatives, children, friends and partners and becoming more ethical.

Becoming less motivated by material possessions and looking for fulfilment elsewhere will keep us healthier rather than worrying about how to finance our present lifestyle. People and the world are changing, now it is ‘cool’ to care about the planet, spend less and simple pleasures are becoming the norm.

To overcome the mental distress we are suffering is to get in touch with what truly makes us content as individuals.

Instead of spending more we are looking for new experiences and seeking to develop who we are as a person. Making do with what we have and downsizing our lives can only lead to more contentment.

It may be that we wish to retrain in a more caring profession, aromatherapy, teacher, gardener, or become an eco warrior! Have a dream and work towards achieving the dream.

Start to do what is fulfilling rather than chasing more success. Live a gracious life and those around you will feel the benefits too.

Most of all trust trust that life with adjustments is perfect as it is. If we live a more fulfilling life and give to ourselves and others then we will emerge as healthier, happier human beings, the sun will shine more often, the universe will smile on us and the earth will be a better place.

Copyright Carole Railton June 2010

Author's Bio: 

Carole Railton - International Beahviourist - leads you through the path of survival to the road of success.
Carole has worked with some amazing people and still gets goose flesh when she coaches someone whose whole life changes for the better.

Based in central London but traveling extensively giving talks and workshops she is well versed in different cultures as she has traveled to over 60 countries. Always keen to hear of people's successes and needs.

Her love of children has lead her to write about kids and their needs in the modern world, as well as produce a book on personal branding and one on its way for November 2010 on modern body language.