Here’s a list of businesses started during depressions or economic crises:
Fortune Magazine (ninety days after the market crash of 1929)
FedEx (oil crisis of 1973)
UPS (Panic of 1907)
Walt Disney Company (After eleven months of smooth operation, the twelfth was the market crash of 1929.)
Hewlett-Packard (Great Depression, 1935)
Charles Schwab (market crash of 1974-75)
Standard Oil (Rockefeller bought out his partners in what became Standard Oil and took over in February 1865, the final year of the Civil War.)
Coors (Depression of 1873)
Costco (recession in the late 1970s)
Revlon (Great Depression, 1932)
General Motors (Panic of 1907)
Proctor & Gamble (Panic of 1837)
United Airlines (1929)
Microsoft (recession in 1973-75)
For the most part, these businesses had little awareness they were in some historically significant time of economic tragedy.
Because the founders were too busy existing in the present – actually dealing with the situation at hand. They may have not known whether it would get better or worse, they just knew it was what it was, and they were going to do best they could.
They knew they had a job they wanted to do, a great idea they believed in, a product they thought they could sell, payroll they had to meet. They knew they had a family to feed.
Half of the companies in the Fortune 500 were started in a bear market or recession. Half.
Point is, most people start from a place of disadvantage (often with no idea they’re doing so) and just fine. Some do really well.
Those who survive the adversity, survive because they took things day by day.
It is important to have a plan set up for this year, especially considering the year we just closed up. But, focus on the moment.
It’s easy to get caught up in the collective helplessness many are carrying around, thinking about the ways should be, and wondering whey they’re not.
But it doesn’t matter whether this it the “worst time to be alive” or the best. What matters is you have the present, and its in the present that you can take action to make things better, to problem-solve, overcome obstacles, improve someone else’s day.
Keep Calm and Fund on.
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