Surviving Economic Meltdown: How Real People Are Managing Rampant Inflation

It’s rough out there. With rampant inflation in necessities like food and housing, millions struggle to keep their heads above water. 

Here’s how real people are making it work. 

Rice and Beans

A bowl filled with half white rice and half beans cooked to look like a chili.
Photo Credit: Ravsky via

People rely on the cheapest foods for sustenance when they can’t afford anything else. Rice and beans are cheap, filling, and offer enough nutrients to get by. 

No Kids

Sleeping infant wrapped in light blue bear blanket on a blue grey background.
Photo Credit: via

Kids are so expensive that many people decide to forgo parenthood. They can barely afford to feed and house themselves and know that adding a child would make things much more challenging. 

Even people who desperately want to have kids decide against it because they can’t afford it. 

Old Cars

Grey sport sedan modified to go faster.
Photo Credit; Cahyadi HP via

The price of new and used cars skyrocketed lately, so many people opted to keep their older cars. The trick is getting them proper maintenance so they keep running. 

One Streaming Service

pointing remote at large television screen with numerous on screen viewing options
Photo Credit: Proxima Studio via

People can afford precious little entertainment these days. They stick to just one streaming service at a time so they have something to enjoy, but don’t see a point in paying for more than they can watch at once. 

Home Cooked Food

Woman tasting a home made soup
Photo Credit: Dean Drobot via

Base ingredients are still cheaper than prepared foods. Eating at home is more time-consuming than dining out but far more affordable. 

Got Lucky

exterior of a large, pretty grey house
Photo Credit: Artazum via

Some folks said they got lucky by buying a house before the pandemic when interest rates were still low and prices hadn’t skyrocketed. 

They have a lovely house and a great interest rate that they refuse to give up. 


figure of a man carrying bag of debt on his bag in the center of a maze
Photo Credit: William Potter via

Many people can’t afford their day-to-day expenses, relying on credit to bridge the gap. Although this strategy can avert disaster in the short term, they’re setting themselves up for an even worse situation if something doesn’t give. 

Low Cost of Living Area

The Centennial Bridge which connects Illinois to Iowa at sunrise
Photo Credit: Sam Wagner via

There are still some affordable places in America. Some folks are only surviving because they live in cheap places like Mississippi and Arkansas. Of course, living in an LCOL area has trade-offs, as they lack high-paying jobs and infrastructure. 

Family Living

Grandparents playing in the grass with young grandchild.
Photo Credit: Andy Dean Photography via

Multi-generational housing is becoming more and more common as people can no longer afford their own space. 

Go Vegan

An abundance of healthy frutis and vegetables on a table.
Photo Credit: Antonina Vlasova via

Meat and dairy are becoming luxuries few can afford. They’re embracing a vegan lifestyle to save money on food. 

Food Pantries

Group of volunteers packing bags of food at the food pantry.
Photo credit: Gorodenkoff via

People who can’t afford food rely on food pantries to keep their bellies full. Unfortunately, the food banks are being stretched ever thinner as more and more people need them. 

Side Gigs

A senior woman working at a grocery store.
Photo Credit: gpointstudio via

Many people’s full-time job isn’t enough to cover their expenses, so they turn to places like Uber and Doordash to make extra money to fill the gaps. 

Skipping Essentials

Confused office worker sitting behind a desk holding her hands up.
Photo Credit: ViDI Studio via

When you can’t afford life, something’s got to give. People stopped saving for retirement and paying for healthcare. They sell their cars and skip meals. 

Source: Reddit

Author: Melanie Allen

Title: Journalist

Expertise: Pursuing Your Passions, Travel, Wellness, Hobbies, Finance, Gaming, Happiness

Melanie Allen is an American journalist and happiness expert. She has bylines on MSN, the AP News Wire, Wealth of Geeks, Media Decision, and numerous media outlets across the nation and is a certified happiness life coach. She covers a wide range of topics centered around self-actualization and the quest for a fulfilling life.