Still relevant: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. That blockbuster book by Stephen Covey, published in 1989, remains popular today. Covey’s long-time, best-seller advises readers on how to reach goals through timeless principles, like changing ourselves to change our circumstances.
Covey’s guide to better living was followed by a brigade of other books about becoming successful. Among them, The 7 Habits of Highly Successful Investors, by Florida financial coach Kasey Claytor. Claytor has helped hundreds of snowbirds and other retirees reap the rewards of their lifetime investments through her formula for retirement success. She suggests these seven steps:
- Delay Gratification. Successful investors, Claytor notes, have the self-discipline to hang onto some of their earnings, starting early in their careers. They delay a few good times to get ahead. Once they have a nice, diversified portfolio of investments, successful investors also avoid the instant gratification of withdrawing money to splurge on a pricey vacation or luxury car.
- Invest for Life. “Successful investors,” Claytor says, “don’t cash in all their savings the day they retire.” To stay ahead, they keep most of their money invested and growing. They limit withdrawals, rather than dwindling away their retirement pot too early.
- Ignore the Hype. No matter what friends, family or TV show hosts tell you, follow your own instincts rather than their advice when it comes to investing your money, Claytor explains. “No one cares as much as your future than you do. Listen and learn from many people, weigh the pros and cans, but make your own investment decisions.”
- Understand the Risks. Recognize that everything in life has risks. Investing is no different than crossing a busy street, or driving to work on a snowy day. “Ask yourself,” suggests Claytor, “Can I afford to take the risk?” In other words, don’t use money you may need for other things. Weigh the risks. Invest only dollars you can afford to spare.
- Diversify your Investments. To lower overall risks, pick investments from different “asset classes.” If you “put all your eggs in one basket,”as the saying goes, you could lose your lunch. Medical research, pharmaceuticals and technology may be hot this year, but not next year.
- Buy Low; Sell High. Successful investors never panic and sell when stock prices go low. In fact, many load up on more shares when their value is down. You may see your shares go lower from time to time; but if you buy solid stock, you’ll be ahead over the years. Invest for the long term.
- Believe. Understand tested economic principles, such as “supply and demand” and let the market work for you. The market toils for you 24 hours a day. You can only work a limited time each day.
Manage Your Money . . . financial facts for a brighter future provided by Advancd Asset Management LLC
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