Guitar Lessons, Investing, And Learning From Our Mistakes
My son Thomas has just started taking guitar lessons. I listened to his teacher instructing him and was delighted when I picked him up from class and asked him if he wanted to continue lessons. With a huge smile on his face he emphatically said “Yes!”
Was this because he played perfectly?
Was it because the guitar instructor said he was the best student she ever had?
Playing the guitar is a skill he wants to cultivate and he expects to get better with time.
As adults I think we forget that part of learning is making mistakes. We don’t give ourselves the grace or space to learn new skills.
Seery’s article about building her investments was refreshing because she gave great advice including: give yourself room to grow.
Her experience is that she was able to grow her SIX figure portfolio in under 6 years… that’s pretty impressive. The first piece of advice she shared is a quote from Warren Buffet: “Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful.”
She says that “taking action, even when it was scary, was the single best financial decision I ever made.”
She expanded on that and suggested that investors regularly do a reality check.
Ask yourself: If your portfolio lost 30% of its value over the course of a year, would you panic and sell?
If the answer is yes, consider changing your investing strategy.
If the answer is no and you are certain in saying you wouldn’t change a thing, you are on the right track!
This seems like a difficult practice to follow. If your investment is your retirement plan and you see it plummeting, then your natural inclination is to protect your assets and your future.
However, as experienced business owners, we know that acting out of fear is rarely the right motivation. Ms. Seery provides some additional insight to help us keep level headed.
- Start simple and minimize risk with diversification
- Practice patience over instant gratification
- Cultivate your skills over time
She concludes by saying that just like any other skill it takes trial and error and sometimes failure to develop your skills and confidence as an investor.
Remember, just like Thomas isn’t going to be a famous guitarist overnight, we’re not going to be perfect with investments.
But hopefully we can learn and grow together.
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