The “Tar Pit”…that’s what I call the trap that the web and social media sets for me every second of the day. You know what I’m talking about, like when your phone buzzes with a new text message and you pick it up to read, then you see a breaking news story, which leads you to a Facebook post, that leads you to Reels because you see a funny dog video, scroll, scroll, scroll… then one hour later you realize what you’ve done. Besides just wasting a lot of time, the add-on negative effect is a terrible reduction in attention span and ability to focus.
So with this in mind I’ll ask you a question: What do you usually find yourself reading?
But before you answer, let’s take a break for a pet pic.
This is Luna. My son and his fiancee adopted her last week. She only weighs two pounds now but is very smart and feisty enough to hold her own with their two other adult cats.
Now back to the question…What do you usually find yourself reading?
News summaries, headlines, and quick bits to keep yourself updated?
Or longer reads like books and articles?
We’re ever more inundated with information that’s eager to capture our attention.
We click because we want to stay up to speed and avoid missing out.
The trouble is, the news is always changing. There’s always a new headline or story to chase.
And the more we chase, the more we feed the need for constant updates.
If you’re like me, you’re often wishing for more time to delve into the deeper stuff.
The book a friend recommended.
That long-form article you have saved in your email (it’s been there for weeks).
Those are the reads that can change our lives.
Not the constant drip of passing information that loses relevance almost as soon as you’re done reading.
That kind of deep attention takes dedicated effort that’s hard to find in our frenetic world.
However, in making time for the deep work, I’ve learned a few things I’d like to share.
One of the secrets to long-term investing is knowing what to ignore.
As a professional, I’m constantly consuming a flood of analysis, economic reports, breaking news, earnings reports, etc. etc. etc.
To use that information, I have had to develop frameworks to channel what I read and use it to paint as complete a picture as possible.
It’s a constant battle to be able to know what to focus on and what to ignore as noise.
Here are a few other valuable (and often overlooked) principles that I’ve learned through deep reading and experience.
– Most things happen in cycles.
– It’s usually better to pursue small wins over time and avoid big mistakes than to chase big wins.
– Always question what we “know.” Especially about markets and the economy.
– A need for action is often about a desire for control. Often, doing nothing is the right move.
– Focus on finding good value for your money.
Bottom line: so much of what we read is noise.
It takes dedicated effort and close attention to sift through it for insights.
I’m watching markets and I’ll check in as needed when I have something valuable to share.
As always, please reach out if you need help making sense of financial information.
In closing, here’s a Dad joke:
How much did the pirate pay for his earrings?
A buc-an-ear! 😉
P.S. What books have changed your life Marci? Would you share a recommendation with me? I’m always on the hunt for new wisdom.
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