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image of stock market graph on a laptop for the blog post titled: the best investment strategy for normal people

The Best Investment Strategy for Normal People

image of stock market graph on a laptop for the blog post titled: the best investment strategy for normal people

The best investment strategy for normal people (i.e. non-financial types) is simple. Yet it tends to yield better risk-adjusted returns than a commonly touted investment strategy.

We discussed whether or not the stock market is haunted on The BIGG Success Show today. Here’s a summary of that discussion.

This show was inspired by recent fluctuations in the stock market. What’s the best investment strategy to deal with these fluctuations, if you’re a normal person (i.e. non-financial types)?
Read more

The Best Investment You Can Make Now

finance_mazeStocks are up significantly from their low in March of this year. Of course, they still haven’t clawed their way back to the level we saw in 2007. However, you have to ask yourself if stocks are the best place to put your money right now.

Treasuries – bonds issued by our government – have also had quite a run as investors have fled to safety. If interest rates go down, the value of the underlying note goes up. Interest rates are incredibly low right now. How much lower can they go? Read more

Investments That Always Pay Off

pay-offBigg success is life on your own terms. The five elements of bigg success are money, time, growth, work and play. Today we’ll focus on money.

You may have noticed that the market is up year-to-date. That’s the good news. The bad news is that we’re still off quite a bit from the top.

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The main market indicator, the S&P 500, hit its highest level in history on October 9, 2007. The good old day, we guess you could call that.

It hit its most recent low on March 9, 2009, off 57% (excluding dividends) from that high nearly one-and-a-half years earlier. Of course, now we’re up over 49% from that March low but we’re still off about 35% from the high if we factor out dividends.

The bottom line is that our portfolios have still taken quite a hit. It made us wonder …

Are there investments that don’t lose value?

It depends on your goal.

Your investment goal

Why do you invest? Obviously, you want more money. Why?

For some people, it’s the end. However, the end is pretty empty. For most of us, it’s a means to an end. Instead of financial returns, we really want emotional returns.

We want to be happier!

If that’s the case, research shows there may be a more direct path to happiness, assuming that basic needs — food, shelter and clothing – have been met.

Invest time in work you love

We tend to follow an indirect path to happiness. For example, many people strive to build a portfolio that allows them to retire when they want.

One direct path to happiness is to do the work you love. Bea Arthur, the late-great actress, said:

“Actors don’t retire. People who work in jobs they don’t like retire.”

Invest time to find the work you love. Invest time doing the work you love. It’s an investment with returns beyond your wildest dreams.

Invest time in relationships

Some people want more money so they can buy things. There is a more proven path to happiness.

Invest your time in relationships. Research shows this delivers higher returns on the happiness scale than having more money.

The direct path creates synergy

Bigg success is life on your own terms. The bigg idea behind bigg success is synergy. One place to search for synergy is between the five elements of bigg success.

Let’s look at two of the five elements of bigg success – money and work. You don’t need as much money to be happy if you’re doing work you love.

The funny thing, though, is that research shows that doing the work you love often leads to more money. If you put first things first, you end up better off all the way around. That’s synergy!

Now let’s look at money and play. Research shows that strong relationships lead to greater happiness than more possessions. You can save money by having friends.

It’s also interesting that, in our interconnected world, those relationships may very well lead to more money if you don’t force the issue. Put the relationship first and let the money follow.

Invest directly in happiness by investing time doing what you love with people you love. That’s bigg success!

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Would you like more tips and tools to live your life on your own terms?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thank you so much for checking in with us today. Please join us next time when we discuss mixing business with pleasure. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00456-081009.mp3

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(Image in today's post by svilen001)

Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover

clover Happy St. Patrick’s Day everybody! We hope you’re having a good one. We have to celebrate today with song!

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marylynn
Does that mean you’re going to sing, George?

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georgeI hope not. We want our audience to keep listening. I only put you through that torture, Mary-Lynn.

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We do like music here at Bigg Success as you may have noticed by all the songs and bands we talk about.

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marylynn
I’m more of a melody person and George is the lyrics guy.

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With it being St. Patrick’s Day, we started thinking about the song, I’m Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover. What a happy little jingle, written all the way back in 1927 but, ironically, overlooked until Art Mooney popularized it in 1948.

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georgeThe song opens, “I’m looking over a four-leaf clover that I overlooked before.” And in the lyrics … see I am a lyrics guy … are three great lessons.

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Sunshine + Rain = Roses

The second part of the song goes, “One leaf is sunshine, the second is rain, Third is the roses that grow in the lane.”

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marylynnThis is the first lesson we see in this wonderful song and it seems particularly appropriate right now as we face tough times. Sometimes the sun shines. I just love sunny days. The sun represents the good times.

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Up until about a year or so ago, we were living in pretty good times, economically. We often aren’t thankful enough when we’re in the middle of them.

Then it rains. And we’re in the middle of a storm right now. But the thing is – if the sun was always shining, if it never rained – would we really appreciate the sunshine?

It’s the change of weather that makes weather more interesting. It’s the change in circumstances that makes life more interesting. And boy, are they interesting right now or what!

This part of the song wraps up talking about the roses that grow in the lane. And here’s where the lesson comes in. Without the sunshine and the rain, those roses wouldn’t grow. Without the rain, those roses wouldn’t bloom into their full beauty.

So it is with us. It takes sunshine and rain, good times and bad, for us to reach our full potential. Because in the down times, when the challenges may be the greatest, we gain wisdom, strength, and skills that we would never have otherwise. And those things carry us to greater heights than we could have ever imagined when the good times come. 

The fourth leaf

The song continues, “No need explaining, the one remaining is somebody I adore.” St. Patrick’s Day is all about luck. The fourth leaf of a four-leaf clover is often associated with luck. And how lucky we are if we have someone to adore! That’s the second lesson from this song.

Isn’t it interesting that the song doesn’t talk about having somebody who adores us? It’s showing us that to give our love, our adoration, is so very important. Because we can’t really love someone else fully unless we love ourselves enough to have some love to give, some extra capacity. Then we can experience the joy of giving love.

Let’s not overlook the third lesson

Believe it or not, that’s the whole song … it’s like the whole song is a chorus.

So you may be saying, “Wait a minute. They said there were three lessons in this song and so far they’ve only talked about two of them.”

Good catch. The third lesson is in the first part of the song. “I’m looking over a four-leaf clover that I overlooked before.”

Since we view four-leaf clovers as a sign of good luck to come, we wonder …

How often do we overlook the good luck that is right in front of our faces?

We have wonderful people in our lives. We have the basic necessities we need. We have so much and we often fail to stop and be thankful for it. Yes, today is a day to realize how lucky we are. Our stocks and the value of our houses may be down. But we shouldn’t overlook how fortunate we are.

We feel fortunate that you spent time with us today. Thank you so much. 

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Get the tips and tools you need to be a BIGG success.
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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If we don’t have enough of this one thing, we’ll fail. If we have too much of it, we’ll fail. Join us next time to find out what this one thing is … and exactly how much you need of it to succeed bigg. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00352-031709.mp3

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Is It Better to be Lucky or Smart?

(Image in today's post by woodsy)