The economy is very tight. There is no doubt about it: We're in a recession and have been for a while. Here come more layoffs ... a decision in an election that has lasted more than 2 years (and cost obscene amounts of time and money) ... the crowded schools ... the cuts to social services. The list multiplies.
For what it is worth, my response is to bow down and face the reckoning. Spending up may have been "entertaining" but most agree that living simply and within one's means is the better plan for individuals and the country.
So, instead of getting scared about what's to come, I try to remind myself, "Where have I been excessive?" and "Where have I remained in balance?" Usually there is equity in that inquiry.
And feeling uncertain is healthier than feeling afraid.