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Investing: Being in it to win it

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We’re looking at new schools for my soon-to-be high schooler son.

As parents, we’ve made so many mistakes, learning and futzing things up as we go.

I’m not the same parent as I was 13 years ago.

Investing as learning process

investors get better by learning

Investing isn’t an activity — it’s a process.

Tradestreaming is all about learning from  — and sharing — what we’ve experienced.

From my interview earlier this week with Jonathan Clements (author of The Little Book of Main Street Money and previously the personal finance columnist for the Wall Street Journal)):

A lot of what it takes to become a good investor and a good manager of your money is just time.  Think about people’s learning curve — in some sense we don’t really get an opportunity to become experts in money management unless we really put our minds to it.  Most of us will only buy 2 or 3 or 4 homes during the course of our lives — we never really get the chance to become experts at that.  So, there’s a good chance that we’re going to mess up.

Similarly, we only get to claim Social Security once, so in terms of when to claim Social Security, there’s a good chance, we’re going to mess up royally.

And similarly when it comes to investing, yeah, we’re going to get the chance to see a lot more bull and bear markets than we would opportunities to buy homes.  Nonetheless, the chance to mess up is enormous in part because people have to cope with all this noise.

4 ways to accelerate your investment experience

  1. Nothing beats experience like experience: you just have to be in it to win it.  That means ensuring your take adequate precautions to maintain your ability to stay invested.  The research shows it’s not about age, it’s about experience and time in the market.
  2. Log your experiences: Keep a trading diary.  Better yet, blog about what you’re doing, sharing your activities with others on Seeking Alpha or on  StockTwits. You’ll get feedback from others — helping to expedite your learning and climbing the learning curve.
  3. Plug into the tradestream: Use the Internet, the blogosphere, and twitter to identify top performers interested in sharing their knowledge.  If you’re interested in making sure results are what they claim to be, follow top performers on Covestor who have agreed to have their performance audited.
  4. Listen/watch the best investing podcasts: I’ve compiled a list of what I think are the best investing podcasts on iTunes.  But there are many more great ones.  I interview a lot of these experts on Tradestreaming Radio, too.  StockTwits TV in general and Abnormal Returns TV (from Abnormal Returns) are also great for access to true experts in their domains.

I’m sending my kid to high school.  Like James Altucher, I don’t know if I’ll send him to college.  There is so much information readily available to investors, you can get a degree in hard knocks if your’re diligent and interested.

You just have to plug into the Tradestream.

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