No one lives in poverty by choice (at least not consciously so, anyway). Some people have it harder than others, with fewer variables within their control, but everyone still has common ties. In the US, poverty is a multifaceted phenomena with a lot of layers; there’s really no one cause, necessarily. That said, this one surprising factor is associated with long-term poverty more than nearly any other variable.
Poverty can weigh sufferers down, making forward momentum feel impossible. Because of this, many poor people feel forced to settle on their healthcare, education levels, and stations in life. Unfortunately, all this settling only deepens the rut. Delve deeper into the number one reason people stay in poverty in this post.
Here’s Why People Stay “Stuck” In Poverty:
To Strive or to Settle?
Poverty is no easy hole to climb out of. It’s exhausting. You can have little energy left for yourself when you spend most of your time either working and worrying. It’s no wonder, then, that many people living in poverty find themselves settling: on their health, education levels and their stations in life. All this settling only deepens the rut, and each issue only compounds the other.
Settling on Poor Health
Poverty and poor health often go hand in hand. Part of this is because the impoverished are less likely to buy health insurance, and therefore they tend to put off doctor visits until serious symptoms arise.
Another issue is the tendency to buy cheap, unhealthy junk food in attempt to stretch dollars. Poor diet and infrequent medical care is a ticking time bomb for obesity, diabetes, and a slew of other potential health issues. People living in poverty are also more likely to be smokers (due to stress) and are far less likely to have access to smoking cessation programs.
Settling on Education
A person’s best bet in raising their income level is to attend college or a trade school, yet most of the least fortunate never pursue higher education. Funding is available for most people who need it, so why do so many poor people remain in dead-end jobs?
Added child care expenses, poor health and negative experiences with previous assistance program hold some people back. Others might not have enough faith in themselves to take that first step, or they may not even know they have options.
Settling on Poverty
Poverty can seem like an impossible chasm to climb out of, and so some people simply give up trying to escape. And many of them aren’t settling by choice. The weight of being poor in itself can drag a person down. Essentially, people end up spending so much time focusing on their situation and just surviving that they have little energy or time left to climb out of the situation. At an impasse, these people continue living as best they can, settling for what they have.
The destitute aren’t the only ones guilty of settling – they just happen to be the most obvious group because they’re crawling out of the deepest pit. People of all walks of life settle, holding themselves back simply because they don’t realize they can do better. Are you doing the same thing in your life? Where have you settled, and what can you do to rise out of your own rut?
~Here’s to Your Success