At this point, the COVID-19 pandemic is approaching its second anniversary. But unlike happy milestones, this one is far from festive. In fact, at this point, many people fear that the pandemic will continue to drag on for years to come, causing various waves of infection and making it impossible to return to a normal lifestyle.
If you’re depressed that the pandemic has lasted so long, here’s some potentially good news. Investment banking giant JPMorgan predicts that the pandemic will end in 2022, and we will enjoy a full economic recovery at this point.
Now, it’s worth noting that the good folks at JPMorgan might be pretty savvy when it comes to financial matters, but they’re not exactly public health experts. They are not necessarily in a strong position to predict the course of the epidemic.
However, financially, they know their stuff. And so, if JPMorgan calls for a full economic recovery in 2022, that carries a little more weight.
But as the US economy fully recovers from the pandemic in 2022, you may have to face your own personal recovery. Here are some steps you can take to fuel that recovery and get through the shock of the pandemic.
1. Build a strong emergency fund
Many people have learned the hard way that having emergency savings is crucial over the past 22 months. A good way to weather the pandemic is to buy yourself financial security in the form of an emergency fund – a fund with enough money to cover three to six months of living expenses. This money must remain hidden in a savings account, where it cannot lose value like an investment wallet would.
2. Make a debt repayment plan
If you lost your job or saw your income drop during the pandemic, you may have had no choice but to rack up costly debt along the way. If so, now is the time to develop a repayment plan.
This could mean consolidating your debt through a balance transfer or a personal loan. Or, if you’re a homeowner and your credit rating is strong enough, that could mean refinancing your mortgage and using the extra money you get from the transaction to eliminate your debt.
3. Increase your income with extra work
During much of the pandemic, the job market has been sluggish. That changed earlier this year, and now there are a lot of jobs available.
If your primary job doesn’t provide a strong enough paycheck to come out of the pandemic, a second job might do the trick. And there are plenty of side activities to choose from, depending on your skills and schedule.
To look forward
The pandemic has dealt a miserable blow to many people, and at this point many are struggling with the fatigue associated with COVID. Americans are tired of wearing masks, fearful of closures, and having to deal with the stress of exposure and infection from loved ones.
For the sake of society, let’s hope that JPMorgan’s prediction comes true in 2022, and next year we can finally put the events of the past two years behind us for good. At the same time, be sure to develop your personal recovery plan so that it is easier to move forward.