As of March 1, 2013, the sequestration set automatic spending cuts for the military and various domestic organizations. Although medicaid, social security, pell grants, veterans' benefits and other low-income programs will not be affected, there may be a ripple affect for healthcare, education, law enforcement, disaster relief, unemployment benefits, non-profit organizations, scientific research and more. So how does one get through this challenge?
The only way to get through any challenge in life is to place a creative positive spin on the problem with numerous options, solutions, alternatives, etc. So allow me to get you thinking. Many government employees will be forced to furlough (i.e. work a four day work week, 20% pay cut); whereas, other employees may have their hours cut to part time. Whatever the decision, you need to re-evaluate necessities vs. luxuries.
So lets breakdown a typical budget; housing, utilities, food, transportation, personal (i.e. insurances, medical, etc.), education (i.e. tuition, daycare, school supplies, etc.), savings, credit cards, entertainment, clothing, etc. Do you really need it? How can you cut or renegotiate these expenses? Life will not end if you cut the cable. Your ears will not fall off if you don’t buy any earrings. Okay, if you were honest with yourself and eliminated at least 20% of your expenses, read on. If not, you need to re-evaluate necessities vs. luxuries.
Ready for your sequestration green challenge? Refer to the numerous articles on how to green your home. Transitioning to a vegetarian or vegan diet one or twice a week will save on your grocery bill, reduce the carbon footprint (if you buy local) as well as other health benefits. And using other forms of transportation, such as walking, taking a bike, public transportation, and/or carpooling will save money, reduce pollution, not to mention good exercise. If you must drive, take an approach of how some companies such as UPS saves on gas, by only making right turns.
Well let’s not just stop at housing, food, and transportation, but college students need to find additional ways to save on education and entertainment as well. For example, purchasing/downloading textbooks to your kindle, checking out DVDs at the library (need green movie ideas? Check out http://tinyurl.com/alejt3j, http://tinyurl.com/b7jq938, http://tinyurl.com/b92bkeg, http://tinyurl.com/b963kmc, http://tinyurl.com/b6ne9lv, http://tinyurl.com/bezwewq, http://tinyurl.com/b8vokmv, http://tinyurl.com/b4sz967 ) and being creative for entertainment on campus will save money for students.
Although these tips are just the tip of the iceberg, its a start to get you thinking.