Everything Is an Investment
2019 is going to be a windfall year for you.
You're going to make a lot of money this year — possibly more than you ever have in your entire life.
I'm not kidding. You're going take your wealth to an entirely new level this year.
So... how are you going to do that?
Easier than you think: You're going to change your perception about most things in your life. And it starts right here, right now...
Say these words out loud: Everything is an investment.
Come on, say it out loud with me. There's probably no one around: Everything is an investment.
Everything is an investment.
This year you're going to look at everything you do as an investment.
Everything you buy is an investment. Everything you do is an investment. Every second you spend doing anything at all is an investment. Right now, reading this is an investment.
Every time you sit down to eat, you're going to see that as an investment. Taking a shower, investment. Going to work, investment. Spending time with family, investment. It doesn't matter what you're doing; everything is an investment.
Why? And how is that going to take your wealth to an entirely new level?
Because once you perceive all of your actions as investments, you'll end up making smarter decisions.
Now, let me tell you, this is not a “penny pinching” plan. Penny pinching is great. But that's not what we're doing here.
Penny pinching involves being frugal. It means not spending money. That's not what I'm saying.
Instead, “everything is an investment” is a plan to spend money better to seek a better return. What we're looking to do here is maximize our return on investment on all things.
But before we go any further, let’s actually define an investment. And for that, let's refer to Mr. Benjamin Graham.
In his time-honored 1949 masterpiece, The Intelligent Investor, Graham writes:
An investment operation is one which, upon thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and an adequate return. Operations not meeting these requirements are speculative.
According to Graham's definition above, investing is comprised of three elements:
- "Analysis" — Scrutiny of a business's underlying soundness and value
- "Promises safety of principal" — Deliberate protection against capital losses
- "Adequate return" — Aim for an acceptable, not extraordinary, ROI
Anything else is speculation. And that's what we want to avoid here.
Speculation is fine in limited amounts. But we don't want to speculate here. Everything is not speculation.
(I know someone out there is going to argue that last sentence. But absolute truths do, in fact, exist, although most of those absolute truths are conceptual. 1 + 1 = 2 is an absolute truth. There's no speculation over that.)
On the other hand, everything is an investment.
When you eat, you're investing. When you sleep, you're investing. Shower, shit, shave... all investments. When you do these things, you're investing in future you. Even if some of the things you do, like eating, are absolutely necessary, you can work to maximize your return from those things.
Here's an example:
I want a cup of coffee right now. I could walk to either 7-11 or Starbucks, which are both the same distance from me. Which is better as an investment?
Well, let's take a look: A 16-ounce regular coffee from my local 7-11 is $1.89. The same thing from Starbucks is $2.89.
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Now, both coffees contain the same amount of calories. And assume that it costs the same amount of time and effort to buy both. Which would make for a better investment?
Well, the Starbucks’ coffee costs 53% more than the one from 7-11. And they both have similar caffeine content. 7-11’s coffee actually has slightly more caffeine than Starbucks’.
So at the end of the day, you're getting the same thing from both Starbucks and 7-11.
Now, there's at least one person reading this thinking, “Well, I like Starbucks coffee better,” or, “Going to Starbucks is a better experience than 7-11.” And both of those are things to consider. However, do you like Starbucks that much better to pay 53% more? Is the experience of buying coffee at Starbucks over 7-11 worth 53% more?
Those are questions to be answered by an individual. Maybe you do like Starbucks coffee at least 53% more than you do coffee from 7-11. Maybe not. But what I'm asking you to do is consider these things.
Again, this is not penny pinching. If you wanted to penny pinch, you could just do without. Instead, we're talking about spending money and time better to maximize your return on everything. What we're aiming for is efficiency, not frugality.
A frugal person would go out of their way to save money. They'd sacrifice their time to save a buck. But that's not always the best investment.
Of course, all of this is left up to you. I can't tell you personally if 7-11 coffee is a better investment than Starbucks. And that's because I'm not you. To you, maybe Starbucks is a better investment.
What I'm asking is that you consider the return on the things you do. Because when you begin to see all things as an investment, you'll begin to see the world differently. And you'll change your behaviors.
Because you're a logical person. And when you begin to consider the return on the things you do, your own logical self will push you toward efficiency.
Everything is an investment. That's your 2019 mantra.
Until next time,
As an editor at Energy and Capital, Luke’s analysis and market research reach hundreds of thousands of investors every day. Luke is also a contributing editor of Angel Publishing’s Bull and Bust Report newsletter. There, he helps investors in leveraging the future supply-demand imbalance that he believes could be key to a cyclical upswing in the hard asset markets. For more on Luke, go to his editor’s page.
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