I often receive emails from readers asking how I can help them change their financial lives, change how they manage their money, change how they make their investment decisions…basically change how they behave with money.
Then, someone recently wrote to me…
I don’t believe what you write makes sense for people, as there is nothing called as long term investing. You can only make money in the stock market in the short term because, as Keynes said, in the long term everyone is dead.
So your effort of changing how I, or anyone else, invest seems an exercise in futility.
You see, when people ask me how I can help ‘change’ them, or when this gentlemen wrote how my efforts to ‘change’ people is futile, I assume they are talking about modifying their thinking, attitudes, habits, beliefs, behaviours and thus outcomes.
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Safal Niveshak’s Investing Workshop travels to Bangalore (18th Jan. 2014) and Chennai (19th Jan.). If you are interested to attend, please register here.
As I have realized over the years, from my experience and that of others, trying to change another person is generally an exercise in futility and frustration.
So while I disagree to what this gentleman who sent me the above mail says about long term investing, I agree to him when he says that the idea of ‘changing’ people is futile.
But I have known this fact ever since I started the Safal Niveshak initiative.
I can never change how you save money, or whether, you save money.
I can never change the way you make your investment decisions.
I can never change how you pick your stocks – through hot tips or independent research.
Yes, I can influence and affect people but the only person I can really change is me…myself.
In the same way, the only person you can change is you…yourself.
No matter how insightful or relevant my message might be, my honest motives will only produce a negative outcome if my audience isn’t looking or asking for help, advice, feedback and input.
Telling the fat guy that he needs to lose some weight, or the broke that he needs to get his money behaviour right, when he hasn’t solicited an opinion, will rarely produce a positive response…no matter how ‘right’ the message might be.
The past 2.5 years of teaching, coaching and mentoring people – through my Investing Workshops and through this site – has taught me that people will listen, learn, respond, and change their behaviour “only” when they’re genuinely ready and willing.
As a teacher, I can just invite you to read what I have to say, I can provoke you to take an action for the betterment of your financial life, and I can challenge you to take your first or next step towards financial freedom.
Basically, I can just be a catalyst to your own learning curve.
I can provide you with the tools of techniques of picking up stocks effectively. I can warn you against the pitfalls of human behaviour that can hurt your investment decisions. I can share with you the practical steps of achieving financial nirvana.
But I can never change how you actually behave well and invest better, till you are ready and willing to change yourself.
It’s only when you seek ways to better yourself, when you resolve to do the best you possibly can, honestly, the universe conspires to help you. All you need do is to show the willingness, to act on the willingness, making use of the little resources you have at your disposal.
Yours is to do the seeking, and the finding becomes very easy.
As a wise man said, it’s only when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.
Art of Investing Workshop in Bangalore & Chennai: Safal Niveshak’s Investing Workshop travels to Bangalore (18th Jan. 2014) and Chennai (19th Jan.). If you are interested to attend, please register here.