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The investor mindset

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Written by   184
4 days ago (Last updated: 3 days ago)

In High school , one of the many concepts I learned while studying Economics before I decided to part ways with the subject (probably going to be the topic for discourse sometime in the future) was that of opportunity cost. Put simply it is having to sacrifice a thing in order to gain or obtain something else which is usually of a greater value. If memory serves me correctly it is related to the term 'foregone alternative'.

As an investor one has to forego a lot of things such as such term pleasure or gratification in order to achieve one's long term goals of financial freedom or independence. An investor is never satisfied with staying within the confines of his comfort zone , neither is he afraid to make changes in order to attain his goals as more often than not we have to embrace change and jettison the fear of the unknown. Little wonder someone said:

"Change happens when the pain of remaining the same becomes greater than the pain of making the change."

Some may say I have a 9 to 5 job that pays well which meets all my needs , why then should I consider becoming an investor ? The reality is that with the dynamics of the world today, it is imperative for everyone to diversify or have multiple streams of income. What better way to achieve it if not other than having or making an investment no matter how little it may be.

Remember the ocean in all its vastness is made up of little drops of water. Thus having an investment which consistently generates passive income for you, no matter how little it may be is now a necessity.

Having the false sense of security of being engaged solely as an employee because of a fat paycheck will be anyone's greatest undoing. Anything can happen in life as it has its ups and downs. Sometimes this go well in your favour and some others times it may seem as though the whole world is out to get you.

Also an employee, job loss can happen out of nowhere even though you may have being very productive. Firms could restructure and consequently have to downsize, worse still they could go down under or 'fold up'. In such scenarios employees who were unprepared for such eventualities could have a long and tough road ahead to getting back on their feet.

The plight of Academics in Nigeria who while trying to salvage the public universities as well as better conditions of service for her members has been a bitter pill to swallow especially for those who did not and still do not have a secondary source of income aside what they earn for carrying out research and tutoring students.

Since they embarked on an industrial action to press home their demands, the government has withheld their salaries as it has invoked a 'no work, no pay' stance. This scenario is a clear pointer to the fact that relying on a single source of income is dangerous especially for those with families.

Thus transitioning from having only an employee mentality to adding an investor mentality is no longer a luxury or something optional but a necessity. The question one needs to really be asking is when and not if one needs to have the investor mindset.

The path of an investor is not always rosy as there are challenges Losses can be incurred while building up one's portfolio or due to investment failures. It is therefore important to state that for one to succeed in this path, willingness to take risks is an essential quality or ingredient one must possess. Similarly one shouldn't throw all caution to the wind all in the name of taking risks. The risks have to assessed to ascertain if they're worth taking. Essentially the good investor takes informed decisions involving calculated risks and isn't heedless or reckless.

Another bottleneck that can serve as an hindrance in the path of an investor is that of procrastination . This needs to be avoided when it comes to making the hard or painful decisions on the route to achieving your objectives. Situations where you have to make such decisions must always come up, thus it is usually a matter of when and not if they will arise. Being indecisive could make one miss out on opportunities that may never come one's way again. Indeed such opportunities could a once in a life time occurrence thus missing them could result in life long regret.

Closely related to this is the endless wait for the perfect condition for investing or investment opportunity which usually never comes. Thus if you have an idea of something you'd like to invest in no matter how big you intend it to be in future, you can as well start the investment on a small scale and consistently build on it while making changes or adjustments as you progress as there's no such thing as a perfect plan.

Remember 1^365 = 1 But 1 *365 = 365

That is the power of consistent value addition no matter how little it may be on a daily basis. Thus NEVER become comfortable with your present situation but STRIVE to build upon it by ALWAYS adding something no matter how little it may be.

Though it is never too late to adopt the investor mindset irrespective of age, you will agree that those who do so at an early age or stage on life have a higher chance of achieving their dreams as they find it easier to take risks. The reason for this is that as one ages, one takes on more responsibilities and there's a tendency to be more cautious as one's actions tend to affect a lot more people. As Elon Musk puts it during a speech at a valedictory or graduation ceremony ( the additions in parentheses were done by me):

"Now is the time (when you're single or younger) to take risks , you don't have kids. As you get older ,your obligations increase and once you have a family you start taking risks not just for yourself but for your family as well . (At this stage) It gets much harder to do things that might not work out."

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Written by   184
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We have to dispose our minds to be able to take risks before we succeed

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