Archive for January 2016

The Stock Market Is CRAZY – What Do I Do?

The stock market has been experiencing crazy swings since the start of 2016. In fact, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is down more than 10% since the start of the year.

This can cause a lot of alarm for investors. Particularly those who are very close to retirement or who have already retired.

What should a person do in this situation? Sell it all? Buy a bunch of gold and silver? Do nothing at all?

I determine my approach by asking several questions:

  1. When do I really need the money I’ve invested?  This is a great question each investor should ask. Since I have no need for my invested money at this time (it’s for my children’s college and retirement), I’m able to wait out a downturn.
  2. Do I have the ability to “time” the market?  Not really. I can anticipate some changes, but I have no control of global macro economics. With the market being flooded by oil and other commodities, various hostilities between strong nations, credit markets being squeezed, and natural economic cycles, there are definitely pressures on commercial growth.  But I can’t time the market. I suspect you are also challenged to do so.

Then I remind myself of various statements of wisdom that have informed my investing during my life. Here are a few:

  • “October: This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks. The others are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August and February.” – Mark Twain
  • “Emotional people buy high and sell low. Smart investors buy low and sell high.” – Unknown
  • “You never truly lose until you sell.” – Unknown

So what have I done during this challenging time? The same thing I did in 2008 – continue the course. I continued to invest in stocks (they were on sale!) and other assets (like businesses and real estate) to diversify my portfolio.

This approach has worked well for me for 20 years.

What is your approach?

4 Painful (very painful!) Financial Lessons I’ve Learned

I’ve learned some painful lessons in my financial journey. Some of them were very painful! I’m going to be sharing about some of those painful lessons in my upcoming live event one week from today (more about this event below), but here are four of the most painful lessons I’ve learned.

4 Painful Financial Lessons I’ve Learned

  1. Don’t “Go it alone” without seeking financial counsel. Have you ever faced a major financial decision but chose not to seek wisdom from people who’ve “been there – done that” before? I know I have. And I’ve paid stiff penalties that would have been completely avoided if I had only gotten over myself and asked for help. I’ve found that PRIDE is the greatest reason I’ve attempted to “go it alone” without seeking wisdom from others on financial decisions. And we all know where pride leads us …
  2. Listen to my bride when making a major financial decision. Perhaps the only thing worse than losing money on an investment is facing the “I told you so” greeting from one’s beautiful spouse. When my bride has a negative “feeling” about an investment, it is like 5-alarm fire bells going off saying “RUN AWAY FROM THIS DECISION!”
  3. Pray for God’s guidance. If a major financial decision is so hurried that my family and business teams can’t pray about it, then we’ll let the opportunity pass on by. I’ve made some hurried decisions before without praying about them. Some worked out okay. Others were complete and utter flops. I’m completely convinced that prayer is an essential part of financial decision making.
  4. Always have a plan. And a back-up plan. And probably another one. Rarely do plans come together exactly as we mapped them out. New information becomes available, laws and regulations change, other parties in the deal change their minds, etc. I’ve learned that it is best to approach any and all financial decisions like Muhammad Ali approached boxing when he famously said, “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee. The hands can’t hit what the eyes can’t see.”

Those are four of the most painful financial lessons I’ve learned. I wouldn’t trade any of the experiences, however, because they’ve allowed me to become a much more savvy financial manager and leader.

It is my passion to help you win in your money journey too! That’s why I’m offering a free online event just one week from today. The details are below. If you want to make 2016 the best year yet, I encourage you to register now. REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED.

Best Year Yet - FB Header

  • EVENT: How To Make This Year The BEST YEAR YET
  • DATE: Thursday, January 14th
  • TIME:  8:00 PM Eastern Time
  • DURATION:  60 minutes (45 minutes teaching + 15 minutes Q&A)
  • COST:  Free
  • REGISTER:  Click HERE to reserve your spot. Space is limited to the first 500 people who sign in on the night of the event.

5 Tips To Win With Your Money in 2016

Every single day, I wake up thinking about how to help people prosper with their finances. It’s for this reason that I’m hosting a free online event called “How To Make This Year The BEST YEAR YET” on Thursday, January 14th, at 8:00 PM Eastern Time. I’ll share more details below, but first I want to share a few tips to help take your money to another level in 2016 (I really like #3 the most!).

  1. Prepare a budget each month – and follow it! We all know that a budget is helpful, yet so few people actually take the time to prepare one each month. If you truly want to maximize each and every dollar in 2016, commit to prepare a budget each month before the month begins. Give every dollar a name. Give some. Save some. Invest some. Spend some. It really works!
  2. Focus on paying off your smallest debt. If you’re caught up in a wave of debt, it can seem overwhelming to tackle all of them at once. Instead of putting “a little extra” toward each of your debts, pay the minimum payment for each debt except the smallest one. Use all of your extra money to focus on eliminating that one debt. You will be surprised at how quickly that debt will disappear, and you will gain huge momentum toward liberating your life from unhealthy debt.
  3. Use your tax refund to launch something! Too many people spend their entire tax refund on the most urgent item in front of them – a debt, or maybe even a trip. But what if you decided to use the money to launch something new – a product you’ve created, a new business, or investment opportunity? You could utilize the money to catapult yourself to financial freedom!
  4. Sign up for a financial conference or class.  Financial education is vital to your financial success. Sign up for a real estate investment course, a stock investment conference, or an online financial education course (like our IWBNIN Core Coaching Program)
  5. Set a saving/investing goal and ask someone to hold you accountable.  It is one thing to have a goal. It is quite another to tell someone that goal and invite them to hold you accountable to reach it! For instance, I’ve set a goal to run 400 miles in 2016. I want you to hold me accountable to it. You can do so by being my friend on the Runkeeper app (it’s one of my favorite apps!).

Employ these tips, and it will help springboard you to financial success in 2016!

Now, about the upcoming online event, here are the details:

  • EVENT: How To Make This Year The BEST YEAR YET
  • DATE: Thursday, January 14th
  • TIME:  8:00 PM Eastern Time
  • DURATION:  60 minutes (45 minutes teaching + 15 minutes Q&A)
  • COST:  Free
  • REGISTER:  Click HERE to reserve your spot. Space is limited to the first 500 people who sign in on the night of the event.