Sure, the recession sucks, but look at the bright side. Being thrifty is now cool, and cutting expenses is all the rage. This is a wonderful opportunity to change your life. You can re-invent yourself - for less.
So go ahead - fire that cleaning woman that's been driving you crazy for the last three years. Rip us the renewal for the ridiculous Day-Timer refill that costs $30 and comes in a plastic tub filled with useless paper. It is way more fun to buy a pocket calendar at the local book store for $12.50
Pull out some clothes from the back of your closet that thankfully still fit and are woven with memories of yourself from a different era. Say out loud and without shame "I can't afford it" to the thirty-five people who ask you for money today. It's liberating - and true. Finish every bottle of product, including hotel hair conditioner. It frees up space in the bathroom and must be good feng shui.
Set aside this year's embossed and engraved gold foil Christmas card from the Maine Turnpike Authority and make a mental note to check on how much this exercise in political glad-handing is costing tax payers.
The recession might also be good for women, in a dark sort of way. Flex-time, recently only for "mommies" on a track, is now for anyone at a Fortune 500 company that wants a "sabbatical." Businesses are cutting costs by offering employees reduced hours and encouraging creative ways to work less while meeting demands. This is not a bad thing.
Maybe all the guys on Wall Street are busy counting their bonus money, but did you see last week's NYT Sunday Business section? The Corner Office and The Boss, two feature articles usually about male masters of the universe, were about women. The cover story was about menopause, for God sakes. There were three other major pieces by and about women.
If the recession means less shopping, more soul-searching and a shot at the corner office, bring it on.