Let me qualify what I mean by “courage” with regard to investing. I don’t want to ruffle the feathers of people in the military, firefighters, law enforcement, or any other noble profession that requires putting your life in jeopardy!
The kind of courage I’m talking about is going against conventional wisdom. Conventional wisdom recommends that you don’t attempt to beat the market by investing in individual stocks, and that you’re better off buying a mutual fund or ETF.
Now, if that’s what you decide to do, I have no problem with that. I’d rather see you in the market in some form or fashion then not in it at all.
However, to be an individual investor takes plenty of courage. You are putting your hard-earned money at risk without any guarantees.
Sure – we are all great investors in hindsight! But our inability to forecast the future with great certainty, and to place bets on the future anyway, absolutely takes courage.
How much courage do you need to be a successful investor?
Well, let’s see.
- the courage to investigate stocks,
- courage to buy,
- courage to hold,
- courage to hold down 50%,
- courage to add to winners,
- courage to not sell during downturns,
- courage to not panic during bear markets,
- courage to ignore the media, and…
- the courage to continue to believe that the market over the long term will go higher.
That’s about all the courage you’ll need to give yourself a chance of winning.
Until next time…be courageous!
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