“If the Phone ‘Doesn’t Ring, ‘It’s Me” — Jimmy Buffett
You ‘don’t need to hear from me to know your breaking point. Because when you think to yourself, “We can’t afford to lose more,” and you say the same words to your spouse, that’s when you know it’s too late. And like clockwork, you sell until you can sleep.
My take? You’ve been on a path that was always destined to end poorly. Sure, it would be easy if markets went straight up. But they don’t. Prices change, and it’s in times like these you’re either comfortable with your financial plan, or you’re not. There’s not a whole lot of in-between.
Trouble hits investors when they realize their plan isn’t what they hoped it to be. My father-in-law constantly warned readers of Richard C. Young’s Intelligence Report that “Hope is NOT a strategy.” And at dinner the other night, he reminded me that prices are a qualitative event plain and simple.
In my conversations with you, we talk about emotional areas of your life—qualitative areas of your life that you care about dearly. We talk about whether or not I think you’re going to outlive your money and what draw rate is right for you. And the reality of it is, it’s not always the answer you’re looking or hoping for. Sometimes it isn’t what you want to hear, and we end up not working together. Listen, I’m Your Survival Guy, not your motivational speaker saying, “You can do it!” when I’m not sure that you can.
As Your Survival Guy, my path is already set in stone. It’s built upon the tried-and-true methods of patience and compound interest espoused by Dick Young. And you know what? It turns out the wheel works. But it only works with your commitment to a plan you can live with through thick and thin.
Action Line: Don’t let prices guide your ship. Understand that human nature and all its emotions are working for and against you. By the time you realize prices mean much more to you than they should, it’s too late. Avoid that mess. Invest for dividends and interest and let the prices fall as they may. This is investing, not pickleball.
P.S. Now that war has begun in earnest in Ukraine, what advice are you giving your loved ones? There’s a lot more to think about than just your investment portfolio. If you need help keeping your mind on what’s serious, click here to sign up for my free monthly Survive & Thrive letter. I’ll help you dial in on what matters, and tune out what doesn’t. But only if you’re serious.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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