Financial Hardship is Still Too Real for Americans
Financial hardship can create a stressful situation for many and it can leave you feeling vulnerable and even desperate at times. And as much as we’re made to believe the American economy is improving, and new jobs are still being created, the reality for many is just the opposite.
There could be several reasons why a high percentage of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and why they’re having a tough time saving money. For one thing, the prices of many goods and services are still high. Lately, it’s only inevitable to find your weekly purchases climbing, even if you think you’re taking time to cut back your spending. We’re made to feel tipping is required, even as a friend recently quipped, “just for carrying the food to the table!”. A lot of companies have declared a pay freeze, and many employees find themselves job hopping from one place to another seeking better opportunities and higher pay, which can also get pricey after awhile. And man, the hike in fuel costs that are now moving in an upward tandem with increasing temperatures.
It may be just easier to blame consumers for overspending or not caring about their future, but that appears to be so far from the truth lately. Most Americans don’t save and aren’t saving because they don’t have the means to.
Frankly, the recurring money saving tips and suggestions that plague consumers every day through the available public communication sources are getting old. It’s hard food prepping for a whole week, it takes up too much time. By the time you get to work and zap your homemade lunch in the company microwave, the taste of the food changes. Even a potato tastes funny after it’s been microwaved. So you decide to eat out for lunch, figuring it’s only five days out of the week, or two, or three if you’re working remote or hybrid these days, only to realize your dining out costs are increasing as well.
Road trips are expensive, so are plane rides. By the time you pay off the costs of the hotel, dining, and traveling, even a staycation or a brief weekend away adds up as well.
The only possible solution for many Americans is to either continue borrowing to pay off expenses, or to simply grin and bear their financial burdens until this thing – whatever it is – passes through.