Imagine it’s a very still day, and you’re in a boat on the ocean.
There’s no wind.
The water is as flat as a mirror.
The calm goes on just long enough for you to start to feel like it’s normal.
When a small wave finally comes… it feels big. When a regular wave comes… it feels huge.
As scary as it might feel, it’s important to remember that waves are normal.
In fact, occasional storms are normal.
And the last thing you want to do when you get into a storm is abandon ship.
Past podcast guest and avid fisherman David Coggins recently shared some thoughts on taking the long view in his newsletter, and it feels like you could swap “fishing” for “investing”, and the meaning might remain close to the same:
The Long View – People have a platonic vision of what fly fishing should be, and when they start, they feel like they’re a long way off. Then they get frustrated. I get it. There isn’t a fishing humiliation I haven’t suffered through—tangles, knots, catching the tree behind you, catching the same tree behind you again, falling in the water, losing a fish, losing more fish. That’s all fishing. But fishing is also: being on the water, engaging with the natural world, being in a beautiful place and not looking at your cell phone, and yes, drinking terrifically bad beer. Fishing, for me, is the entire experience and the small disasters along the way are part of the long game.
When I’m with a friend who’s learning to fish, and we get to the water, there’s always a sense of anticipation and a few nerves. I take a moment to say, “I’m happy to be here with you. Don’t worry about mistakes. I’ve made them all. We’re here to have a good time in this beautiful place. It’s going to be a good day.” And it is.
Do you know what percentage of Americans have run a marathon? About 0.5%, or one in about 200 Americans (according to a Runners World study). Why such a small group? Because it’s hard!
After my wife Jen completed the Boston Marathon last month, I shared that stat with our three sons. The Boston Marathon is like the Super Bowl for runners. For those who aren’t familiar with the running world, runners have to qualify based on race time. It’s an elite group. To participate, you have to train not for just one marathon but at least two (one or more to qualify and one for Boston).
My boys and I watched as thousands of dedicated runners sped by competing in their own Super Bowl. We even saw a blind runner being led by a trained guide which reminded me of our podcast guest, Caroline Gaynor, who guides blind Ironman triathletes.
If you’ve talked to anyone that has run a marathon, many will say the most challenging part is the training which typically lasts about 20 weeks and includes between 35 and 80 miles of running per week. That is a lot of time and hard work dedicated to a big goal – very similar to our theme of taking the long view.
Jen had setbacks in her training, including a strained calf and shin splints (among others). She worked with experts, such as a physical therapist and a chiropractor, to overcome her ailments and get back on track. Jen set a goal, and she had the fastest race in her running career (3:39), all while raising three kids and running a nutrition business.
How did she do it? She took the long view! I saw many parallels between her journey and the one we take alongside our clients. Our clients have specific goals they want to hit. With thoughtful planning, including experts that help work through challenges, and a massive dose of patience, we work to help clients increase the odds of hitting their goals. So, while running a marathon may not be one of your goals, let us help you plan for your financial Super Bowl. Set up a time to talk or meet now.