No fear! (The Financial Athlete #39)

“Fear ruins the ride. Skateboard stunts must be performed with no fear, but having no fear without a foundation of experience and knowledge is stupid.”
— my skateboarding friend

There are those who let fear govern their lives. Though perhaps more gifted with talent and intelligence than most, they never reach near full potential for fear of loss or failure. The investor is not handcuffed by this fear. He accepts risk and weighs it against potential reward. If in his mind the potential reward considerably outweighs the risk, then the investment is deemed worthy. The greater skilled he is in weighing risk vs. reward, the wealthier he will become. It is that simple.

An inexperienced investor correctly realizes fear impedes the path to success, but he is wrong to think the skill of weighing risk vs. reward is not one cultivated over a long period of time. Consequently, the inexperienced investor fearlessly rushes into investments, sometimes with little thought about risk. Initially, his boldness fills him with the pride of a fierce warrior. In time reality sets in and this boldness may gradually become replaced by another fear…the fear of financial devastation. Haunted by this fear, he will either primarily blame himself or others which includes “the system.” If his primary blame rests on others, there is little hope for him to ever develop expertise in investing. Worse yet, he may be unable to free his mind of fear in his victim mindset. As for the one who primarily places blame on himself for misjudgment, there is much hope. He will learn to refine his craft and move beyond fear to again embrace no fear but this time on the foundation of experience and knowledge.

As a bee seeks nectar from all kinds of
flowers, seek teachings everywhere

Like a deer that finds a quiet place to
graze, seek seclusion to digest all that
you have gathered.

Like a mad one beyond all limits, go
where you please and live like a lion
completely free of all fear.

– Dzogchen Tantra


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