Guest Blogger Leslie Adler: The current financial crisis and state of the financial markets have led to increased unemployment and an "across-the-board" loss of value of personal investments and retirement funds. Some may be fortunate enough to weather this storm better than others.
Here are some ways you can help your girlfriends who are not as fortunate, who are more significantly impacted by these tough financial times:
• Meals/Groceries: When you are making dinner for your family, make two of whatever you are making. Or if you have the means, when you are at the grocery store, load up an extra bag of staples or "goodies" that you think your friend is passing on when she is shopping -- and drop it off at her house.
• Social Stuff: Instead of asking your friend to go out, try inviting her to "hang out." Go to your local library and rent a great DVD (they are usually free or very inexpensive) and make some popcorn.
• Clothing/Toys/Books: Go through your family's gently used clothing, toys and books and if they could be of use to your friend, pass them on.
• Employment: Help your friend or her spouse network to find new employment. This can be done whether you are a working person or not simply by making introductions to people you believe may -- in any way -- be a resource for them.
• Self-esteem: Create a goal that you and your friend can accomplish that has nothing to do with money, i.e., train for and run a 5k. This will make you both feel good.
• Re-invention: Maybe your friend can't find work in her field or has never worked before. Assist in her re-invention by either directing her to classes or investing in her by paying for her to take a class she can't afford or teach her a skill you have, i.e., if you have advanced computer skills, train her to be an administrative assistant.
• Services: Share your expertise and where you can to provide services for free that your friend would otherwise pay for, i.e. if you are an accountant do her taxes for free this year -- or if you are handy, help make home repairs.
• Emotional Support: You can't always fix your BFF's problems, but you certainly can always listen to them ... and for most women, that is half the battle. Cicero said it thousands of years ago, "Friendship makes prosperity more shining and lessens adversity by dividing and sharing it."
Have any other ideas on how to help your friends through tough financial times? Please share them in the comments section below or in the momlogic community.
|Leslie Adler is the founder of The Vuv Club.|