Feature photo by Mike Poresky

You’ve heard the voices on television, on the radio, at your place of employment, at your dinner table, in your head. They are all telling you the same thing: WE’RE SCREWED! The economic downturn during the last decade was really just a teaser. Much like the first few seconds of an overhyped rollercoaster ride, that last dip of a recession you were too embarrassed to admit was scary has passed–but before you can finish telling yourself “Well, that wasn’t so ba-“ WRRROOOSH! The ride kicks in, and down we go. Hold on to that safety bar and try to ignore the pounding of your heart. You probably don’t have adequate health insurance should something happen, anyway. So, why worry?

Remember, worrying is a highly maladaptive process to stress. It disrupts homeostatis and taxes your body, burning energy and wasting your time. And you need that time to look for work. You also need that energy to be stored for later use, as you probably are not getting a healthy balance of nutrients from the dollar store snacks you call dinner.  Fortunately, Gozamos has some tips to help you and your family come out on top during these downtimes:

7.  Cut your entertainment budget.  Americans spend billions on entertainment.  Try to eliminate frivolous trips to the movies or entertainment parks.  Don’t want to give up those ultraviolent action flicks? Think about committing a crime and getting arrested instead. Talk about getting behind-the-scenes of your very own real life police drama! Romantic comedies more your thing? Try spying on your neighbors while they are having sex.  Running across expressways and harassing junk yard dogs are also good FREE ways to get that adrenaline rush you’d normally get from expensive amusement park visits.

6.  Give up your vices.  Gambling, drinking and smoking are taxed heavily and can take huge chunks out of your earnings.  Additionally, giving up expensive vices now can help you stave off even more expensive addiction-related illnesses later.  This doesn’t mean you have to quit having fun. There are always alternatives. Learn to get high off broken dreams and tears.  If you are not interested in going completely straight edge, learn to maximize your buzz by not eating before–during or after–you drink. Use booze instead of water to take pills marked with the “Do Not Take With Alcohol” label. The pros do it and you can, too!

5.  Sell items you don’t need or use. Most Americans have too much stuff. Many of us have closets and garages that are jammed with gently-used items that can be sold for extra pocket money.  Yard sales, local classifieds and online auction sites are great places to sell your old books, movies, music and ass.  What goldmine are you sitting on?  Get out there and make some cash!

4.  Go to school.  People with college degrees consistently earn more than those only having a high school diploma or less.  Increasingly, students have turned to borrowing heavily from the government to finance their education, resulting in a lifelong yoke of student loan debt.  If you cannot or will not borrow to finance your education, go to school anyway. School buildings are excellent sources of light, heat, running water, roofs and office supplies.

3.  Take charge of your bills.  Many Americans are forced to make hard decisions every month regarding whether they should pay for food and rent or pay their utilities.  Bills and past due notices can quickly pile up.  Before you toss those bills out, remember, when done properly, lighting them on fire can provide hours of heat and light for your family.  And unlike other conventional forms of fuel, they are free, renewable and delivered to your door monthly.

2.  Go digital.  If you have a job, try to work from home more. All you need is a computer and an Internet connection. Telecommuting will help you save big on transportation, childcare costs and expensive business lunches with the team.  In fact, experts suggest not leaving the house at all can do wonders for your bank account.  So just put on some joggers, sit back and forget about forking over your hard earned cash for those luxury items like professional haircare products, cosmetics, deodorant, toothpaste and toilet paper.  Not bathing or washing your clothes is not only economical, it’s also environmentally friendly.

1.  Emulate your oppressors.  If all this sounds too overwhelming, that’s because it is.  An easier approach would be to pretend everything is okay.  Recognize that poor people are lazy and dumb. Why else would they be poor?  The 99% are just jealous. HATERZ!!!!  The 1% earned their money because they are smart and they work hard. If you work hard and go to school they will surely share their insider trading tips, bring jobs back to the United States and welcome you to their club where you’ll be rewarded with all the champagne and plastic surgery your soulless face can handle.

So what are you waiting for? Get started planning your future today!

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