I was thinking about this the other day. Every place I've turned for advice, I've been told that their field is bad and flooded right now because of the economy, and to avoid their field, whatever it is. Doesn't seem to matter which field I ask about they say "You should avoid X. Best of luck." College graduates say a degree didn't help them if they don't have a good job, and say that it did if they do (which seems rather dubious if you ask me). Likewise, people without degrees who are doing well say it doesn't matter, people without degrees doing poorly are envious of college graduates. If I'm to believe the people around me who've tried to advise me, an attempt to get any job at this point in my life is a waste of time, and I should spend 4+ years in school if I want to have any chance at all of getting a minimum-wage job. Needless to say, I guess I'm going to just do my own thing and hope it works... because if they're right, then I absolutely can't work with the hand I've been dealt and I'm totally screwed, because I don't have the determination to work ultra hard to find a job I don't like, and then work ultra hard to keep it. But if they're wrong, then I can. I have reason to believe that they might be, and it's my only hope anyway.
It seems to me, though, that a lot of the behavior people engage in when they believe the economy is bad, is ironically a major contribution to it making it worse. Think about it... companies cut back instead of trying to grow, and the people who sell stuff to them get hurt by this. People save money instead of spending it, further hurting companies who sell stuff to them, in turn pinching THAT workforce. Do you see what I mean? The belief in a bad economy causes people and companies to tighten their grip on their money, and since the economy depends on the flow of money (much like the body depends on the flow of blood) rather than people sitting on it, this cripples it and reinforces people's perceptions.
What do you think? Plausible that since people are acting like there's a bad economy, the economy is bad? Think about it... there aren't any less resources in the world than there were before. The entire situation is being created, spread, and mutually reinforced by people, right now. I don't believe that the economy is some impersonal force like the weather, it's an abstract model of how people are currently using money and responding to the use of it by others. The current state of our economy, despite the potential of the resources we're sitting on, is a testament to the power negative beliefs can have over people.
Just an idea...