I have spent far too many days living in the red. Not so much the financial red, though I’ve lived there, too. I’m talking about lifestyle red. Living on the extended credit of my body, mind, and spirit. I believe I may actually become addicted to this pattern of over-drawing from this account and actually crave the feeling of wondering if I can escape the bounce. We all have those moments of over-drawing when we need to transfer funds. I get that. I, however, seem to continually find myself back living in this space. I know it by transferring too many funds from my exercise account, my time with spouse account, my time to prepare health meals, my ability to be fully present with family and friends account into my obsessing, perfecting, and over-functioning for others accounts. (Usually, these funds support my professional self. Usually, these funds yield higher interest rates when I transfer time. Usually, I receive nice dividends for perfection and obsession. You can see how this could become addictive.) So, as we move into the second week of the government shut-down, and far too many US citizens live and will live financially in the red, I can’t help but ponder our communal addiction to “red living.”
The sequester, shutdown, and future default certainly will increase the likelihood of financial red living. But the behavior patterns of our elected leaders also seem to be red living in a different way. This says nothing of what the average student’s schedule looks like between academics, athletics, and other extra-curriculars. The average parent’s planner. The average professional’s agenda. Do more with less, and if you’re running low, simply get a line of credit. What happens when there isn’t another line of credit offered?
Many speculate what will occur if we crash through the debt ceiling and plummet into default. I wonder if there’s a debt ceiling for communal “red living” and what awaits us if we default.