Almost Always Bull

The Stock Market, playing the long game, and the importance of setting long term goals.

The past couple of weeks have been a wild ride for those following news of the stock markets. Wild swings, low dips and sell offs not seen in recent years, and speculations about uncertainty in foriegn markets. To many outsiders and armchair analysts, there were fears of bubbles and overvaluations. Allusions were made to the crash of 2008 despite this being nothing like 2008. But, there are many who make profit from such FUD, so here was an opportunity to spread it.

But, those in the know pay little attention to the daily ups and downs of the market. They know that, while the Day Traders might make some fast cash to spend on hookers and blow that way, it has little to do with true wealth. Those who know the market know those folks play the short game.

The smart players, at best, see such low dips as a buying opportunity — like a retail Labor Day sale. Most just ignore it because 3% off is hardly a bargain to tell your friends about. Nay, the truly market savvy are looking far out into the future. The trends they look for are not measured in days or weeks, but years. "Let’s look at where this stock was at 5, 10, and 20 years ago" they’ll say. Because that’s how true wealth is built and measured. They play the long game.

To put it in a concrete example, if you bought $1000.00 of Apple stock in 1998 and still had it today, would you really worry if it took a 5% hit tomorrow? The correct answer is "No". Why? Because you would not only be so far ahead today in 2015 it would be silly but you know that in almost 20 more years it could easily be worth 10, 20, or even 100 times more. Why, because it is worth a hundred times more now than when you bought it less than 20 years ago. The long game is almost always "bull".

This is why it is important to think about, name, set, plan, and work towards multi-year goals. What goals do you want to achieve in 5 years? How about 10 years and 20 years? What does your life look like? What seemingly daunting yet massive, slightly scary, but oh-so awesome things are there? Have you thought about that? Have you put a name on them? Are they on your calendar? Have you mapped out how to get there and achieve them? Do you have a rough idea of the steps you need to take?

If not, you are basically playing the short game with your life. And, frankly, like a Day Trader your success and failure is at the whims of your daily to-do list. Get a lot done today and your life is a bull market. Get little done and it’s a bear market. And, like the Day Trader, your life will feel rich one day and bankrupt the next, more than partially due to forces beyond your control. A boss who dumps a project in your lap or a colleague who interupts you or the person that pulls you into a last minute meeting or the kid who gets sick or the car that breaks down. All of these can sweep in and kill the action of those without goals. Just like China screwing with their currency can send the whole world of short players into a tizzy, so can just about anything wreak havoc on the short player’s task list.

But, those with meaningful, long term goals, know to mostly ignore the fluctuations in their daily grind. That all of this is towards a larger and more meaningful goal. That success is measured in years and not days. You know that the value of that item on your list is a pittance because it will pay off one hundred fold when you finally reach that lofty goal. And if you don’t make any movement on it at all today, hey you’ve got 5,10, or 20 years, and with that much time just about anything is possible.

The Power of When

No such thing as spare time
No such thing as free time
No such thing as down time
All you got is life time
— Henry Rollins, Shine

The Power of When is now available. What is it? Read on…

Realistically, when you take away the time for sleep, the time for eating, the time you want to spend with the people that matter, travel time, and the minutia that makes it all run, most people have about six hours of useable work day.

Six hours.

Looked at another way, that’s only about 25% of every day. All the meetings, all projects, all the deadlines, all the tasks, and everything else you need to do to keep the money ball rolling must fit in there somewhere. And, the only way to do so is to ask one simple question of all of these things.

When?

My friend Garrick van Buren and I have been thinking about and discussing this subject off and on for years now. In the process, we have been able to distill this idea into a simple set of tools to dramatically improve your productivity, eliminate your procrastination, and achieve your most important goals. We have turned this conversation into a ninety minute audio program that is available for purchase.

Here’s a 2 minute sample of what to expect:

Want to unlock your productivity and gain more free time? Want to banish To Do Lists forever and be confident you’re not missing anything? Want to achieve your most important goals while maintaining inbox zero? Want to know the one question that unlocks all of this?

You need The Power of When


P.S. Want to get a sense of some of the ideas discussed? Check out my post, A Time For Things and Better Things.

On Kicking Ass

There are times in our life when we simply kick ass.

It’s OK to kick a little ass sometimes. In fact, I argue that it is imperative to kick a whole lot of ass when the demands of life call for one to do so.

Like the revolution, the kicking ass will not be televised. You don’t have to prove that you have kicked ass. The fact that you kick ass will be obvious to everyone who knows you. You can go about your life, kicking ass along the way, and know deep inside yourself how much you kick ass.

That said, it is also OK to be proud of it. When one kicks ass of any amount, it is OK to declare that you have done so. Let the world know of your ass kickery.

In either case, make sure to take time to reflect on your ass kicking. Especially if the asses kicked are in amounts higher than the average. Enumerate and take pride on the number of asses kicked.

Personally, I see little need to take the names of the asses kicked. That will only slow one down. One cannot both kick ass and take names at the same time. One must kick ass, pause to take the name, then move on to the next ass kicking.

Unless one needs to keep detailed records of each ass kicked for tax or expense purposes. If so, then by all means, take names as well. Just be intentional about the trade off you are making by doing so.

Regardless, the reason I write this straight forward message is simple — we need everyone to kick more ass. The world has changed. There are increasingly less instances of both ass kicking and those that are ass kickers than there has been in the past. Ass kickers were once admired and plentiful. Ass kickers were desired. They are less so now. In fact, some believe they are actively discouraged. There are even those that claim our institutions of learning are turning ass kickers into ass kissers. So, those that kick ass are desperately needed in these hard times and the harder times to come. Those that do kick ass need to make themselves known as far and wide as possible in order to inspire others to kick ass. As an ass kicker it is your duty now, for the future.

Now, go forth and kick some ass.


I’m a writer. Writing is how I make this world better, friendlier, stronger place. If these words improved your day, please let me know by contributing here.

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