February 7, 2013
Guest article by Aysha Griffin
I assume that if you’re reading Paul Merriman’s newsletter, you’re a lot smarter about your money than I have been. Until the past year, working with Paul and being exposed to the concepts of Sound Investing, I never invested a penny.
There were several reasons, or excuses, for this and, despite my embarrassment, I’d like to share them with you. It’s my hope that you might use your knowledge to help family and friends who may be jeopardizing their future financial security because, well, their stories may be similar to mine.
First there was my family story that the reason grandpa “did OK” during the Great Depression was because he never invested in the stock market. Naturally, I thought the stock market was evil, and I had no knowledge of alternatives to the riskiness of individual stocks. Then, I became a freelance communications professional in 1985 (at age 30) and, like many self-employed, never knew from where the next client was coming or how much money I’d have to work with. If I had extra, I’d put it in a savings account, but I was too afraid to tie it up in any long-term investment.
Even during the real estate boom, when I owned a boutique real estate agency and money flowed, I didn’t have a clue how or where to invest, nor felt I had the time to learn. I heard about the tech bubble bust and the Enron scam, etc., and felt smug that I had not invested. Although some of my friends were knowledgeable investors, it was not a topic I felt I could broach, because I didn’t know where to begin and it seemed so personal.
After helping edit and publish Paul’s book, “First-Time Investor: Grow and Protect Your Money,” I understood what I could do and how to do it. In a word, I felt empowered. The subsequent two books in the “How To Invest” series gave me more information about working with a financial advisorand how to actually make smart investment decisions. While we know it’s never too early to start investing, my story proves it’s also never too late. So, I hope you’ll be encouraged to reach out and share your knowledge with your children, friends and other loved ones. It will make a difference in their lives.
Aysha Griffin in a certified business and relationship coach offering consulting and marketing services to businesses, non-profit organizations and creative individuals worldwide.
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