People kept asking consultant Tom Peters how they should cope with the negative effects of the economic downturn. He responded with a free, downloadable list of action points offered at his website.

Called Forty-six 'Secrets' and 'Clever Strategies' For Dealing with the Recession of 2008-XXXX, the list includes common-sense items like these: Come to work earlier; leave work later; and work harder.

But Peters also puts a realistic spin on the benefits of keeping a positive attitude. Among his suggestions: 

  • Adapt to the new circumstances with a smile. "Even if it kills you inside," he says.
  • Don't romanticize the good old days. "Nostalgia is self-destructive," he notes, "and bores others."
  • Take comfort in the thought that this too shall pass. "But then remind yourself that it might not pass any time soon, and so you re-dedicate yourself to making the absolute best of what you have now."

And he believes one edict bears repeating—twice:

  • Sweat the details as never before.
  • Sweat the details as never before.
  • Sweat the details as never before.

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