We encounter people all the time that ‘just want to learn more about the stock market’ or ‘I wish I knew more about money.’  I think that humans do earnestly want to acquire new knowledge but, typically, we want a shortcut to wisdom.  In response to the opening questions, oftentimes the answer will be to read this book, watch a certain movie, or go talk to Mrs. Jones, but, in reality, these are hopeful shortcuts. The best way to start is at the very beginning. Did Michael Jordan dunk a basketball the first time he picked one up? Probably not. Did Kim Jong Un hit a bunch of holes-in-one the first time he played golf?  Not unless your life depends on reporting it.  One person can’t just get on the expressway to expertise.  Jordan likely had to learn how to dribble the ball first and Mr. Un had to take control of a country before recording the unverified score of 34 during his debut golfing round.  Reading books helps to ‘know’ certain subjects but to truly understand something you must do it.  With money and investing it is easy to begin understanding:  stop watching and begin doing.  Take inventory of any assets and liabilities, make a budget, save, and, importantly, envision you living the life you are aiming for.  If you can see yourself on the beach in 30 years use that as a goal to do all the little things rights, the basics. We can’t all hit holes-in-one the first time we golf.

Kyle Gowen, CFA®, CFP® Director of Investments

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