2020 will go down as one of the most unusual years in my lifetime. It was different in every sense of the word and forced me to think differently about life. For the first time, I saw people struggle and hoard toilet paper. Not even money could protect from the sting of death that lurked freely while we were grounded in our homes. The world stopped long enough for wildlife to imagine that humanity had evaporated and the streets were now free to roam again.
My biggest take away in 2020, was a reminder that we all need to strive for self-sufficiency in the areas of food, water, clothing and shelter. The bare necessities of life in the words of Baloo in Disney Classic’s Jungle Book. Growing up, most households had a garden with enough to feed the family and someone with the right skill set to ensure the other areas were covered. This year, I found myself wondering if we would have been able to guarantee food for our households if we could not go out for a long while.
As we spend this month reflecting on the different seasons of life, we will like to spotlight a tough season that some people have been through or could go through at some point. The words, ‘You are Fired’ became synonymous with the reality TV show ‘The Apprentice’. Those words give you a peep into the real world of grown ups. Everyday, hundreds of people hear those words. Nothing really prepares you to receive that kind of news. I know many people who have heard those words and I narrowly escaped hearing them myself. In the build up to that moment, I cried so hard and then made a note to self that if ever, I hear those words, I will like to be better prepared.
Following a conversation with a friend, the idea of an ‘Active Plan A’ was birthed. An active Plan A is an intentional effort to do your best to be prepared for any wind that life blows your way. Life can be tough and the tough get going because they prepared for Day X. Day X is not the name of a movie, it is a day when you are temporarily displaced as a result of sickness, a downturn in the economy, political instability, natural disaster or a ‘you are fired’ moment. Usually, everything happens very quickly. You have a job at 10 am, you are happy, chatty and relaxed. Fast forward to 10:30 am, you get a call from your Manager and you leave his/her office unemployed, dejected, depressed and clueless.
Is it possible to feel bad but remain in control of the situation skipping the clueless state. The answer is yes and one way to do that is by preparing an Emergency pack.
If you live in a disaster prone environment, you are always advised to have a fully stocked emergency pack. Your emergency list will usually contain dried foods and water(Food), safe haven (Shelter), medication (Health); Flashlight, pocket knife and blanket (Protection) with a prescription of the quantity that will last for a defined period.
Look at that list again and take a cue from it as you build your active plan A. Set aside some money every month to cover for food, shelter, health and protection for a pre-defined period. That period is unique to you, it is the amount of reserve you need to keep your eyes dry when life is not so fair. I have seriously considered the thought of growing my food and added that to my list of things to do someday.
As I studied the book of Proverb 21, the fifth and twentieth verse stood out for me with these words,
“Good planning and hardwork lead to prosperity” and
“…fools spend whatever they get”
Simply put, a wise worker doesn’t just work, but like the ant, puts aside something for the winter months. Winter months for the ant can be compared to seasons of temporary displacement. If you ever hear the words, ‘You are fired’, tears may provide temporary relief but it will not take the words back. When you have a plan, you can walk out of your Manager’s office with confidence that everything will be alright.
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Have a great day!
”Day X”..with that alone in mind, everything should align. Thank you! Life and becoming.
Insightful and informative… thanks my Pastors. Looking forward to more publications. Keep up the good work. God bless you.
This was so insightful, thank for the reminder.
I found this piece really useful.. many thanks to Thelma and Idorenyi .
A thought on protracted lockdowns mentioned above. For some, it is not only food that could be a problem. Depending on where you live, security can also be a challenge. Preparing for that too will help…..
Thank you so much for this. It’s action time….