The life of a farmer is very similar to a life of someone seeking Financial Freedom through solid investing. Take a moment to think about the life of a farmer. He or she wakes up earlier than the sun to get the day started. The days are simple yet complex; repeated variations to make sure the farm is running smoothly.
Some of the farmer’s tasks might include feeding the animals, planting and protecting the crops from the elements, lubricating or repairing the machinery and making sure farm employees are satisfied and healthy. The farmer is the ultimate manager, overseeing a living operation with many moving parts.
If the farmer lacks diligence, the entire operation might fail. If the farmer is not a studious and dependable worker, his crops will not be planted, his animals will not be fed, and, slowly but surely, the farm will head down the path of ruin. The farmer is fully aware that there is a season to sow crops and a season to harvest; if the farmer misses the delicate timing of these seasons, not even the greatest weather will bring success. We, as Financial Freedom seekers, are farmers of kindred spirits; farmers of an investing kind. We may not be growing living crops but rather, through our financial discipline and astute investing, we are growing our portfolios in much the same way; with steady and resolute daily actions with the end goal of harvesting our financial ‘crops’.
As Financial Freedom seekers, how are we the same as a farmer?
As ‘farmers’ of our investments, we put money away for a rainy day in our emergency funds, we invest in stocks and bonds that match our investment goals, and we purchase assets with the goal of maximizing the Formula for Financial Freedom of Spending less than we earn and Saving/Investing the rest. All of this investing is akin to ‘planting’ our money to watch it grow.
A Financial Freedom seeker is not a miser but rather keeps a close watch on his financial picture to make sure that it is growing adequately and that the inherent levels of risk are acceptable to the chosen investment goals. If we see that something is broken or that a process is not working as well as expected, we actively work to change our circumstances. We ‘manage’ our portfolios on a daily basis just as a farmer manages his or her farm on a daily basis.
Similar to a farmer having planted his crop and now waiting for the weather to turn out right, we Financial Freedom seekers also sit back to watch our portfolios grow of their own accord. Granted there is still work to be done on a daily basis but for our current investments – especially if we define ourselves as defensive investors – we sit back and watch the assets in our portfolios grow through our solid investment decisions.
The weather can be a pesky thing. All it takes is one drought to destroy the season’s crops; or conversely, if the weather is too good, supplies will increase and drive down the prices to levels where profitability can be in question.
Does the market work in the same way? I believe so. The drought represents tough, bear market conditions. The deployed capital seems to be withering in value, companies are going bankrupt, and investors wonder whether or not it makes sense to continue to be invested.
The plentiful crops represent challenging market conditions where stock prices are at all time highs and values are tough to come by. So what does the astute investor do? Like the farmer, plant, hope, and practice diligence to make sure one is diversified enough that if a ‘crop’ of stocks fail, another investment can pick up the slack. Trust in your system and the financial path you set up and no matter what happens, keep the hope alive!
Ah, the day that we all look forward to; Financial Freedom. Rest assured that it is possible – not easy mind you – but possible. Financial Freedom is defined differently for each person depending on their life goals and personal desires; for some it might be a certain amount of savings. Still for others it might be building up their 401k enough to retire early. The various avenues can differ as much as there are people on this planet earth.
Take a moment to visualize the farmer that is done harvesting for the season; after much hard work, the bins are full of crops and the sun is setting gently in the western skyline as the crickets begin their evening chirp. That farmer is feeling on top of the world and life is surely good. Take a moment now and visualize your financial dreams becoming a reality. How do you feel? Much like that farmer I would reckon.
However you want to view yourselves, you are farmers – not of crops but of your own financial future. Go forward, sow when the season is right and reap the rewards.
Disclaimer: (1) All the information above is not a recommendation for or against any investment vehicle or money management strategy. It should not be construed as advice and each individual that invests needs to take up any decision with the utmost care and diligence. Please seek the advice of a competent business professional before making any financial decision.
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