We are in recession, and many people get scared about it. They are concerned that consumers may not want to buy or have extra money. In this episode, Kendra Perry shares her thoughts about recession and explains why it is not that bad if you have a mindset that can thrive from the downturn of the economy. A recession is an antidote to inflation, and while there are businesses that seem to struggle during this time, it doesn’t mean it is impossible for you to overcome it and even reach newer heights! Tune in and discover the opportunities that are just waiting for you!
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Recession Talk & Thoughts
I don’t know if you can remember as far back as 2019 but I remember this time vividly. I had finally completed my degree. I had graduated from university. It took me such a long time to get through university because I dropped out multiple times. I didn’t belong there, to begin with. I didn’t know there were other options.
It was a bit of a slog but I finally made it through in 2009. Up until that point in the summer, when I wasn’t doing classes, I went to British Columbia and worked as a tree planter. In British Columbia, where I live, we have a lot of logging. The forest is cut down, and tree planters come in a few years afterward and plant trees to reinforce the tree.
That job was what I did during the summers, and I got paid a lot to do it because you get paid per tree. I had a lot of experience in forestry, and in university, I didn’t have any career direction. I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do. When I finished, I wanted to continue in forestry. I had a friend who connected me with her boss, and he gave me a job during surveys for the company. I was super excited.
If you remember, 2009 was the housing market crash and a big recession. Due to the recession, which also impacted the forestry and logging industry, the contract that I was supposed to be working on getting cut because of the recession, and I lost my job. Maybe about two weeks prior to me starting my job, I lost my job.
What I had to do was get scrappy. I was pretty upset but was like, “I’m going to figure this out.” I knew I had tree-planting experience. I had multiple years, which is something that tree planting companies want. They want experienced tree planters, and they are hard to keep. I called every single tree-planting company and negotiated a good wage. I managed to get a good job with a good company in the exact same town that I was meant to get the other job and where I had all my living situations set up. I was moving in with a friend.
It was a pretty rough summer because all the summers I had worked previously, it was easy to find work. I was able to jump from contract to contract, cruise around the province, live in my vehicle, and have a good time. In 2009, because of the recession, it was difficult. I had to think outside the box and get scrappy. I picked cherries. That is a thing. You can go to the interior British Columbia in the Okanagan, and you can pick cherries and get paid per bucket.
That was not a great job. It did not make me a lot of money and was so hot. It was almost 40 degrees. We would get up super early, pick cherries, and then literally lie around like sloths because it was too hot to go for a hike, a walk or do anything. After I realized that there was not a lot of good money in picking cherries and I still couldn’t find any more tree planting or forestry jobs, I went up North and painted my friend’s parent’s house because they needed their house painted.
My friend and I had painted houses in Calgary, so we went and spent two weeks painting their house. From there, I managed to pick up a few other planting jobs, and then at one point, I was going to go herbicide spraying, which is horrible. It’s spraying roundup on the forest. It sounds awful. At the time, I knew it was awful but I don’t think I realized how awful it was being someone who understands chemicals, detox, and all of those things.
What happens is the tree planters go in, and they plant the trees. These herbicide bearers come in, and they have big tanks of chemicals on their back. They spray everything with Roundup. It’s horrible. I managed to get that job, and it was a job that I would never, ever thought that I would ever do but it was the recession, and I didn’t have a lot of options.
I managed to get on a contract with a friend who was a foreman. He gave me the job, and then the universe must have been thinking of me. The universe was supporting me. It was holding me because the day before I was supposed to drive to Northern Alberta to do this herbicide spraying, a friend of mine called me up and said, “I have got tree planting work on Quadra Island.” Quadra Island is this beautiful little island off the Coast of the West Coast of Canada, near Vancouver, Vancouver Island.
It’s glorious, and it was a good job for a good company with good wages. I was like, “Sorry, friend. I’m not herbicide spraying for anymore.” I literally turned around my car and drove to the Coast. Even though that summer was incredibly difficult, and that I had to do all these different jobs and fight to get work, I did well financially and was able to go to South America for eight months. I travel around and have so much fun.
What I want to say about recessions because we are in this looming recession. Personally, I believe we are already in a recession. I know other people would maybe want to pretend like we are not in a recession but essentially, we are in a recession, and people are scared. There is a lot of doom and gloom. When I talked to my health coach accelerator students, there was a lot of fear. People are worried that people aren’t going to want to buy, that they are not going to have extra money, and are worried that it’s going to affect how they build their business.
These are legitimate concerns. Recessions are a downturn in economic activity. What I want to say about recessions is recessions are normal, and they happen every 7 to 8 years. They happen once every decade and are very normal. A recession is an antidote to inflation and the over-printing of money. Recessions are unfortunate, and people can do poorly in recessions, get troubled, and lose a lot of money but when it comes to recessions, the mindset of it all matters.
I had been through a recession and thrived. Was I running my business during a recession? No, I wasn’t, but what got me through was my mindset. I have been reflecting on this because I hear you. I feel a little bit of fear, too. When you go online, and everyone is doom and gloom recession, everything is super expensive, and prices are going up. It can feel overwhelming but I do not want to get into the trap of doom and gloom and creating my reality in a negative way.
Why I thrived so much in the recession of 2009 is because of my mindset. I don’t know if you were like me when you were 25 years old but I was very carefree. I didn’t care much about anything. I wanted to have a good time. I wasn’t thinking about the future and was going with the flow. Obviously, things look a little bit different. I have responsibilities. I have a mortgage. I am the primary breadwinner in my family. I have a lot of responsibility but there’s something that is beautiful about the mindset of the 25-year-old me who didn’t care and wasn’t scared and made it happen.
I got scrappy and innovative. I thought outside the box and kept plugging forward. I’m trying to cultivate that mindset now through the recession and remember that the more I get into that doom and gloom mindset, the more that is what I’m going to see. I do think that with our thoughts, we manifest our reality, and then what we witness in our reality then confirms our thought, and we end up in that downward spiral. I do not want you to go into a downward spiral.
Recessions affect everyone a little bit differently, and they don’t have to affect you. You can still thrive. You can still have an amazing business in a recession. I want to tell you that there are many incredibly successful businesses that have grown out of recessions, for example, General Electric. General Electric started in 1893 when business activity dropped 40%, and General Electric is here. It has been around for over a hundred years, and it’s still doing well.
General Motors is another one. They started in 1908 when there was a 30% business decline. Disney started in 1929, which was the beginning of the Great Depression Trader Joe’s is probably another business that you know when they started in the 1958 recession. Google started in 1998, right before the dot-com bubble burst. 2009 was the recession that I lived through. There was Airbnb. Slack which is one of my favorite tools for communicating with my team and also Venmo.
The truth about recessions is you can look at them as something scary, something that’s going to reduce your income and make you go broke or you can look at them as an opportunity. Recessions always provide opportunity. There are a lot of people that are going to be pulling out of the marketplace during a recession, and so this is your opportunity to go all in because the truth is people are still spending money during the recession.
My great-grandparents were super wealthy during the Great Depression and had servants. There are always going to be people who have money and are looking to spend money. There are always going to be people who get screwed by a recession but that doesn’t have to be you if you decide that it’s not going to be you. Recessions are an uncomfortable time for entrepreneurs and many startups but they always provide opportunities for entrepreneurs with great ideas on services and goods that can help people adapt to a changing world.
If you notice yourself feeling doom and gloom, I want you to shift and remember that amazing businesses are built out of recessions. There are always opportunities in recessions and people making money. What I want you to consider is to develop that very carefree, who gives a damn mindset that I had when I was 25. Was it scary? A little bit.
When I lost my job that I was excited about, I was upset, and it was scary but I didn’t last long in that mindset. I had my little cry, got on the phone, and started calling companies. I leveraged the experience that I already had to get myself jobs. I worked a ton of different jobs that summer but I came out on top so much that I didn’t have to work for eight months. I was able to go to South America and travel all over South America. I went to Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia. For eight months, I lived this incredibly carefree lifestyle.
Remember, where things feel scary and uncomfortable, there is opportunity. Recessions are 100% normal, and they do not last forever. Even if you go through hard times during this recession, know that nothing is permanent. Everything is temporary. Oftentimes after a recession, things start to boom again. I wanted to have this very short, frank, and truthful chat with you about this because I know this is probably weighing on your mind. I know a lot of people are freaking out but that doesn’t have to be you. You could build a highly successful business out of this recession, and I encourage you to take on that mindset. I hope you enjoyed this episode. I will see you next episode same time, the same place where I help you become wealthy AF.