Investing Is Like Body-Building

Investing is like body-building: The results depend more on your patience than your intelligence or effort.

Most people, if not all, have planned to get fit or gain muscle through some kind of exercise or bodybuilding. But how many of us could sustain that intention for a long time, and achieve our ultimate goal? Out of all the unsuccessful cases, I’d guess that 99% lack the patience and perseverance to fight until the end.

At the beginning of investing or body-building, we’re full of passion and energy to achieve our desired result. However, a few days or a week later, when we start to realize we haven’t lost a kilogram of fat despite our efforts, we begin to think of giving up. In investing, if our favorite stock’s price hasn’t moved up or down since we bought it, we start to consider selling our holdings for something that will yield the results we want.

What is the shared problem between the two? Lack of patience.

It’s human nature to want the quickest result with the least effort. If we could lose 10 kilograms with just a few nightly runs; if every stock’s price could rise 100% in 1 month; if we could pay off our mortgages in five years … we’d all be a lot happier. As a society, we are becoming less patient. We want results sooner. However, we should not forget that Warren Buffett has spent decades achieving what he has today.

Indeed, success comes with patience and perseverance. It takes a long time and effort to become muscular or to get rich.

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