My 9/11 Money Story

Over the past couple years, you have heard me discuss more and more about money scripts, how we all have them, how they are influenced by our family’s history around money, and how they establish the basis for how we view money in our lives.  

Studying this subject under Dr.’s Brad & Ted Klontz, one of our assignments was to look into our past, specifically our families, and tell our Money Story.  Needless to say, it is a fascinating exercise and one that I learned a ton from.  However, until recently, I just noticed there are some missing chapters to that story.

The first is the role 9/11 played in developing my mindset with investing and volatility, and how as one client said during the market sell-off of February & March: 

‘I envision you stretched out on a beach with a drink and not a worry in the world’

I take that with the greatest compliment, but that is how I want YOU to feel.  Strip the emotion out of decision making and focus on the task at hand.  But in reflecting on things last week, I would like to share with you how I have come to that point, and how it all started that fateful day in September 2001.

The first investment I ever made was in 1998.  I remember telling the representative, I want the most aggressive buying and selling thing you have. And I was off to the races…

So needless to say when the tech bubble burst in 2000, the impact it had on me was miniscule at best, and honestly I vaguely remember it.

But what was different with 9/11 is I had invested considerably more between early 2000 and late 2001, that in combination with the historical significance of that day, the events have remained with me.

I can remember the subsequent days where the stock market began selling off, I viewed it as, ‘wow this is crazy’…

And that’s it – I had already automated my savings, so I just let them keep plugging away, with the hope on my ‘buy’ day the market was lower.

Each month thereafter, I had no guarantee things would go back to normal, I applied the blind faith of keep buying and it will work itself out.  

And eventually the market did recover and I did see the returns from investing in those stress filled days when no one knew what was going to happen to the economy.

And that is why I can approach things the way I do today.

I always say it takes us going through one big crisis together for you to really learn that I am not full of it, and there is a method to my madness.

Some of you have done so because of 2008, and some for the first time in February or March of this year.

So how do money stories come into play?

They have helped lay one of the core investment philosophies upon which I operate.  Even during the darkest of days, there is a light. While we don’t always know how soon we will see it, it’s there.  



Please add the following content driven disclosures in the same font size as the font used in the majority of the page and with a space between each other: The opinions voiced are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly. No strategy assures success or protects against loss.

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