The power of positive thinking might sound trite, but when last I checked, entire industries have been built around this simple notion. Just ask Rhonda Byrne, author of The Secret, if “glass half full” trumps or surrenders to a “glass half empty” perspective.
To be clear, I’m talking less about blind hope and more about healthy pragmatism with respect to the rational belief that things will return to how they once were. People drive, eat, and consume; they spend, shop, and buy. These are not up for debate. They’re universal truths. Sure, there are times when they might do less of these things than they used to—such as business or personal travel—but for every door that closes, another opens. Case in point: videoconferencing, like Cisco’s Telepresence (to replace travel for meetings) or, in the consumer world, staycations or family road trips (instead of a regular family vacation).
If there’s anything that’s inevitable, it’s the swinging of the pendulum as it returns to rest and equilibrium. Yet for some reason, the scenario of doom and gloom is typically met with desperation, despair, and defeatism, whereas the converse—when times are too good to be true—is often characterized by arrogance, hubris, and unrealistic expectations of sustainability.
The point is that history is on our side.
People will no doubt continue to buy stuff. And sell stuff. And do both on eBay. It’s just that they sometimes go on hiatus when they’re distracted. And if you’re in the business ...