No one expected the economy to crash during the Great Depression...until it did.
No one expected (or maybe they did but didn’t prepare) for a disease to put the entire world at a halt...until it did.
Stuff like this happens because no one expects things to be worse than the last big disaster. For the next pandemic, people will take what they learned from COVID in hopes to prepare better. Maybe they’ll put a few extra months on their emergency fund or ensure they have enough protective equipment to cover for a lack of supply for a few months.
But what if the next pandemic is worse? What happens if it’s so dangerous to where people can’t go in to work at all, even essential workers? This may seem dramatic, but it’s only because it hasn’t happened yet.
Prior to 1930, creating a plan for what would happen if banks ran out of money seemed dramatic. “Their banks! They can’t run out of money,” people thought...until they did.
Preparing for the disasters you can’t see is an idea I learned from Morgan Housel. He writes, “Paying attention to known risks is smart. But we should acknowledge that what [we] can’t see, aren’t talking about, and aren’t prepared for will likely be more consequential than all the known risks combined.”
If you’re only as prepared for the next pandemic, economic crash, or job loss to be as worse than the last disaster, you’re going to be unprepared.