F%@#k the Stock Market

Posted on: Sunday, October 12th, 2008
Posted in: Spendology, Blog | Leave a comment

Well, here we go again.

The stock market, and by that I mean virtually ALL stock markets, have headed south with a vengeance and violence I’ve not seen in my 24 years of holding stocks. .

Does it make a guy rethink flying away and spending buckets of moolah to shirk duties? YES. And how. And yet, if the trip cost $55 and that was all I had left after this stock crash, would I choose to spend $50 of those last dollars on this trip? Damn right!

After all, long-term go-getters expect troubles, and yet stick with their plans (like the 11 Commandments of Fiscal Fitness), even when the world doesn’t cooperate.

So before we get all depressed (like our economy) or fall to the floor (like the stock indices) or cry in our beer (like brokers), I’ll take a few minutes and point out…

(Because 10 is not enough)

  1. You don’t need the money now. In fact, one should rarely put money in stocks for less than, say, five years (a typical market cycle, so say some).
  2. Today’s values don’t matter. What matters is what your investments are worth when you DO need the money.
  3. Stocks don’t make anyone rich. Here’s what will: Family, friends, experiences.
  4. We knew this would happen. The housing bubble, endless credit, mortgage messes, and more have become a house of cards waiting to collapse.
  5. Losses are illusory. You only lose money for sure if you sell at the wrong time.
  6. Buy low, sell high. For those with the stomach, now is the cheapest time to buy in more than five years.
  7. Worrying won’t help. And we all must learn to cope with this kind of crap that hits the fan over and over throughout our lives.
  8. Trust is dead. How can we trust these reckless Wall Streeters, bankers, real estate schmucks, politicians, and other leaders? Question authority.
  9. Cash is king. Before investing anything, have several months of savings set aside in boring, safe places.
  10. Don’t let your dreams crash. And don’t tie them too much to markets.
  11. 55 good things happened today, even if the market did nearly go to 0.
  • ODDS OF GOING: 75%…and while I may have to make adjustments to my life and this trip because of the losses, I suddenly feel more stubborn and committed.
  • WHAT I’M DOING TO FIGHT MARKET ANGST: Kayaking, meditating, playing with children (who—brilliantly—don’t know or care!), hanging out with friends.
  • BIGGEST PERSPECTIVE REMINDER: A dear friend was diagnosed with throat cancer on Friday. Maybe markets don’t matter so much. God bless him. Live for today.
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