An economic recession can frighten the wits out of any business person. This is because the phenomenon can bring down a business so fast that there will be close to nothing left even before the entrepreneur has noticed it. With the scare that the recession has caused before, there is no denying that most business people have exerted their best efforts to minimize the risk posed against their companies.But keeping a business is recession-proof should not be the concern only of the big brands. Small businesses are also affected by the recession. Therefore, everyone has to be vigilant in strengthening their businesses to ensure that they will not be gravely affected should an economic recession hit their industries.Here are some steps you can follow to recession-proof your business:1. Familiarize yourself with the business industry you are joining. As the experts agree, you should never venture out on a business that you know nothing about. Sure, there is a long and hard learning process in running a business. But at the very least, you should know what you need as well as where and how you can get them to keep your company afloat. You also should know how to compete against the other companies within your industry. Always find ways to learn how to improve your brand and operational systems.2. Keep your customers interested. Businesses fail when they can no longer make profits. This can happen when no one is interested with the brand and the company anymore. You have to make sure that your clients do not feel that. Give them something to expect when doing business with you, whether in the form of a free item or a discounted transaction. Keep on innovating as well on the products and services that you offer your clients to encourage them to continue availing from you.3. Make profits from sales your priority. A lot of business people have huge ideals on making their brand’s reputation a priority. Others think it best to consider the company’s employees’ welfare a priority. But what you have to remember is that in the truest form of intents, sales and profits should dominate your priorities as a business person. Your business can only stay for a few more time if it stops selling. Therefore, make sales a priority and work everything out around it.4. Manage your finances well. Money is an important asset in running a business and in making it recession-proof. You have to make quite sure that when the going gets tough in the financial scheme of things, your business still has its reservoir of funds to stay on top. This is something you can do if you maintain a strict and disciplined spending at the office. Never buy things you do not need, as always, and purchase the best quality items at a good price instead of spending on affordable but definitely meager materials.5. Recruit affiliates to broaden your marketing strategy. Marketing your brand and product can be more engaging for clients if you have third parties speaking on your behalf. Affiliates can help your brand become more reputable. What is more, in affiliate marketing, you can work on a commission-based system to ensure that you get the best possible financial returns through referrals and subscriptions.6. Consider partnership and franchising. A business can definitely be run by one person only. But if you want a recession-proof business, you might want to consider getting partners or allowing people to buy a franchise from you. It helps in funds circulation as well as in reaching a wider market. Franchises can also help in building a business with stronger foundations-one that would have several walls to keep in upright even if outside forces try to crush it.7. Go online. Probably one of the most affordable but definitely most effective ways of marketing and strengthening a business is through the Internet. You can set up an online counterpart of your business and make clients from users all over the world. Being online also helps in lowering down your marketing and operational cost because you need not maintain a traditional shop. In this case, you become more financially equipped in handling a business amidst a recession.8. Strengthen your network. Make good friends and stakeholders off the government, the people, and the employees that your business works with. Never run away from them because eventually, they will help your business system flow more smoothly and securely. You can also add in third parties to help out in your operational and financial stance.9. Review your manpower needs. Do you already have the necessary people to help you operate your business? Do you need more or do you think you actually have more than what you should have? Realizing the answers to these questions would help you determine whether or not you are spending just right over salaries. Yes, you need people to help you out. But when you want a recession-proof business, you might also like to consider not having so many people needing to be compensated out of your own finances.10. Set a vision. This tops most recession proof business ideas. Work with a set goal and vision in mind. How do you see your business faring in the future? This is important because it helps you work hard enough to ensure that you get your business to the state that you want it in. Share your vision with your partners, affiliates, clients, and employees to encourage them to help you in keeping the business strong and moving.There are a whole lot of other recession proof business ideas that you can utilize. Just keep in mind that you have to tailor each business idea to suit what your brand or company needs. Vigilance is the key against recession. Making your business strong enough will be a great way of fighting recession.
Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras is a brilliant exposition of the philosophical principles, deep truths, and disciplines of yoga. It organizes the disciplines into eight “limbs,” or categories, of yoga practice. Specific meditation techniques are not given; only kinds of disciplines are discussed. Many of its sutras (aphorisms) describe and comment on these practices. This timeless treatise by an enlightened yogi addresses the universal human condition of apparent separation from God (avidya, not knowing the Supreme Reality) and shows us how to overcome the mental tendencies and illusions that keep us in this condition.Like tree limbs, which emerge in sequence, the first disciplines come first. As they develop, mature and bear fruit, the next ones are practiced. For example, yama prepares one to practice niyama. Patanjali calls the last three elements of niyama “kriya yoga” (“kriya” means action). Marshall Govindan takes the position that these three elements of kriya (or action) yoga constitute the whole of Patanjali’s yoga. However, all eight limbs are discussed in great detail in verses 2.30 through 3.8 of the Sutras and provide a far more complete description of yoga.In verse 2.1, Patanjali says: “Kriya yoga consists of tapas (austerity, self-discipline), svadhyaya (self-study), and Ishvara pranidhana (devotional surrender to God).” (Note: The words in parentheses are commonly accepted translations of the Sanskrit terms.) In the “eight-limbed” path, the kriya yoga practices of niyama precede asana (meditation posture), pranayama (breath control), pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses from their objects), dharana (concentration), dhyana (uninterrupted, deep concentration), and samadhi (oneness with the object of meditation). For this reason, “kriya yoga” is sometimes interpreted “preliminary yoga.” However, the first of the eight limbs, yama, consists of five abstentions (don’ts), and the five elements of niyama are observances (dos), so the kriya yoga practices of niyama can also be interpreted “action yoga,” which implies doing something.The following comments from Govindan’s book on the Sutras contradict Yogananda and other enlightened yogis, who concur that the yoga of Patanjali is the “eight-limbed” path.Foreword (xiv, xv) by G. Feuerstein: “… while Patanjali’s teaching has become virtually equated with eight-limbed yoga (ashtanga yoga), he himself called his path that of action yoga (kriya yoga) in pada 2.1.” “The aphorisms in the Yoga Sutras dealing specifically with the eight limbs appear to have been quoted by Patanjali or subsequently added to his text. There is no real satisfactory explanation for why Patanjali used the label kriya yoga for his teachings.”Introduction Part 2 (xxiii) by M. Govindan: “Feuerstein has pointed out, however, that Patanjali’s yoga was not the “ashtanga” or “eight-limbed” yoga, described in verses 2.28 to 3.8, as has been commonly thought by most translators. Textual analysis has revealed that these verses were merely quoted from another unknown source.”On the contrary, Patanjali never called his path that of action (or kriya) yoga; not in verse 2.1 (pada 2.1), nor in any other verse, nor did he say it consisted of anything other than ashtanga yoga. And if he had quoted the verses pertaining to ashtanga yoga, it would indicate that he agreed with them.In Chapter Three of The Holy Science by Swami Sri Yukteswar a yoga teaching that includes the practices of ashtanga yoga is presented, but it is somewhat different from that of the Yoga Sutras and appears to represent a different school of yoga. This illustrates that the principles, truths and practices of yoga are universal and can be discovered by yogis independently of each other. Of course, two different people would never perceive, categorize or explain these principles, truths and practices in exactly the same way, so unless verses 2.28 to 3.8 of the Sutras were compiled from various sources, they are the unique creation of a single person. That person appears to be Patanjali because there is perfect agreement and harmony between these verses and the other verses in the Sutras.With regard to the idea that Patanjali’s yoga was not the eight-limbed path but only kriya yoga and that verses 2.28 to 3.8 were either quoted by him or added to his text later on, the following points should be considered. If Patanjali had quoted these verses it would mean that he agreed with what they say. One of them, verse 2:29, states that yoga consists of eight limbs, and other verses discuss each of the practices of kriya yoga, treating them as elements of the second limb. Moreover, apart from the verses about ashtanga yoga, which according to Govindan and Feuerstein, did not come from Patanjali, there are only two verses in the Yoga Sutras about kriya yoga. If Patanjali’s path was kriya yoga and the verses pertaining to ashtanga yoga were added to his text later on, we would expect him to have devoted more than two verses to describing and commenting on his path.As mentioned before, kriya yoga consists of tapas, svadhyaya and Ishvara pranidana. The austerities or self-disciplines of tapas involve rising above bodily desires and enduring pain or discomfort, by means of determination and will; “svadhyaya” means deep study of the nature of the Self; and Ishvara pranidhana includes both devotion to God and acceptance of God’s will.Verses 1.23, 2.2, and 2.45 of the Sutras tell us that Ishvara pranidhana and kriya yoga lead to samadhi. Through devotional surrender to God one rises above the influence of ego, harmful desires, and illusions, which darken the mind and keep one from knowing God. The heart’s natural love shines forth and illumines one’s inner life. One follows the guidance of Spirit and practices the moral disciplines of yama with greater resolve. Not only do the blessings of yama come into one’s life, but in addition, the first two stages of niyama naturally arise: one’s thoughts and body become more pure and one finds contentment within. Through devotional surrender to God, one eventually becomes totally absorbed in God. Nevertheless, according to the Yoga Sutras, limbs three through seven, practiced along with the first two limbs, also lead to samadhi, and all eight limbs constitute yoga. (The seventh limb of yoga, “dhyana,” is usually translated as “meditation,” but in modern, everyday usage “meditation” is often taken to mean all or several of the limbs that follow niyama: assuming a suitable posture, controlling breath and life force, withdrawing awareness from objects of the senses, calming and focusing the mind, deep concentration on a particular aspect of God, and fully uniting with God in blissful oneness.)In verses 3.16 to 3.54, verses that Govindan and Feuerstein attribute to him, Patanjali comments on various functions of samyama, which consists of dharana, dhyana, and samadhi. Inasmuch as his teachings included these final, culminating limbs of ashtanga yoga, to be complete they must have also included the five disciplines that precede samyama and facilitate its practice. Because he never said his path was kriya yoga and because the verses about ashtanga yoga describe what are generally considered to be essential components of yoga and fit in with his teachings in other parts of the Sutras, it seems highly unlikely that his path was kriya yoga rather than ashtanga yoga, and that these verses were quoted by him or later on added to his text. They are an integral part of his masterful treatise, perfectly in accord with the other aphorisms in the Sutras, and appear to be his own teachings.