Monday, November 12, 2012

Spotlight: Shannon Lee Simmons

Question 1
You spent the entire year 2011 living on bartering. Can you share 2 lessons you got from that experience
Lesson 1
The difference between needs vs wants.

Living off barter is not as easy as living in a cash economy. With cash, we can instantly have whatever we want in the exact moment we want it. Cash blurs the line between needs and wants. When bartering, each transaction takes time and effort to make it happen. Therefore, I learned that I only put the time and effort into the goods and services I really need, not necessarily the goods and services
I merely want. I learned that I could survive with much less than I thought I could before bartering.
It really made me aware of what's important to me and worth my time and effort. Now that I live in a barter/cash economy, I am more careful with the dollars I do spend because now I recognize when I'm purchasing something I need vs want.

Lesson 2: Community is important

A 100% cash economy is very isolating. Cash, credit etc allows us to merely be consumers at stores or even online. There is no need to actually speak with another human being throughout the whole purchase process. I didn't realize how isolating is was until I started living off barter. Barter forced me to get out and speak to people. I had to negotiate, get to know them and also swap, so we spent time together for that. From barter, I've created a much larger group of friends and I'm part of a community. The social aspect of barter is so important since it helps us to connect and makes us feel like we are a part of something.

2nd  Bartering is has been around for many years what are you thoughts how it will affects and helps businesses and professional in the next five years
I think barter will affect us all from businesses to personal consumption. Barter has always been around, and it's been a great way for businesses or people to save some cash. For the last few years, the economy has been extremely volitile and I think that more and more people have turned to barter as a way to conserve cash. Because of this, I think we will see a resurgance of barter in a much more mainstream way. Barter will be used as a tool to help both businesses and consumers conserve cash in an economy that is getting tigher and tighter on credit.
Shannon Lee Simmons
Financial Advisor
Barter Babes Project

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