Investors: Live for Today

By Steven Fogel, Westwood Financial Corp.

Americans tend to believe that when things are good, they will be good forever; they also believe that when things are bad, they will be bad forever, which can create opportunities for clever investors who can train themselves to stay in the present rather than our past-based programming.

Our minds are designed for one purpose, our survival. The voice is fear-based, territorial and responds automatically, often unconsciously, in ways that can be counterproductive to what we consciously want — and we’re not even aware of it. It works by monitoring and storing everything we experience to use as the model for future situations that that it interprets as similar to a previous experience. This makes everything we do based on our past, much of which was misinterpreted the first time. The net effect is that almost everything we do is past-based and we often have no clue to what we are doing.

Americans tend to believe that when things are good, they will be good forever; they also believe that when things are bad, they will be bad forever, which can create opportunities for clever investors who can train themselves to stay in the present rather than our past-based programming.

The trick is to realize that the voice in our head rarely embraces new possibilities. If we can embrace the facts with uncompromised and fresh eyes instead of the voice, in our heads particularly in this current marketplace, then it is possible to train ourselves to differentiate between the facts of our existing situation and let go of coulda, woulda, and shoulda. Once we are living in the now, we stop being paralyzed and start taking advantage of what’s really going on.

The first step is recognizing that fear keeps us stuck and often confined to our personal self-designed emotional prisons. The second step is to bypass the fear by recognizing that the what-ifs are only what-ifs and haven’t happened yet and may never happen. The third step is to commit to new possibilities and step into the unknown which is the place where miracles can happen and being willing to risk the what-ifs and move forward.