Ended: Feb. 14, 2012
At the end of the day, risk is not volatility, as it is traditionally defined in the stock market, rather it is not knowing what you are doing; making investment decisions based on emotion rather than hard facts; over-leveraging; paying too high a price for your investments or, worse yet, purchasing bad companies; and being overly concentrated.
It is psychology, behavior, and temperament that separate the great investors from the masses.
Conversely, you will hear people who appear unhappy, unsatis-fed, and unsuccessful constantly complain about things over which they have no control. “I am so upset that it is going to rain this weekend. My whole weekend is ruined.” Or, worse yet, you will hear them complaining about their
jobs or bosses in a way that suggests they are helpless in areas over which they do have some infuence if not control. Rather than focusing on matters over which they do have control and maximizing these areas, people dedicate an inordinate amount of time discussing, if not griping about, things over which they have no control whatsoever.
The absence of such feelings would mean that I am not engaging in life at the highest levels. In the realm of investing, the absence of certain levels of discomfort means that great investment opportunities are not presenting themselves. When things get ugly, when people are getting scared (you included), give thanks that the market is giving you opportunities to get rich.