“Don’t worry about what you can’t control. Our focus and energy needs to be on the things we CAN control. Attitude, effort, focus – these are the things we can control.” – Tim Tebow
Winter is inevitable. Not just the season itself, but figuratively speaking. Illnesses, death, crisis, divorce, etc., these will always exist.
The goal is to learn not only how to manage and prepare for the ‘winter’ but how to survive and ultimately thrive during these dark and cold times.
The most successful people in this world are the ones who are able to adapt, protect, build momentum, and stay consistent. This can be easy to do when times are good. We all want to capitalize on opportunities when the economy is roaring, and the markets are trending higher.
But when things turn the other way, our actions can drastically change. We start to pay more attention to the markets when they are down. We are glued to the news analyzing every move and become pessimistic on what is going on in the world.
But we must remind ourselves that winters come to an end. The time to think positively is when everyone else is negative. We need to learn to be proactive rather than reactive.
When you are constantly reacting to external events, you feel as if you have no control. You start to blame the external factors that are holding you back. The excuses are endless, and we react more on feelings rather than values.
So, you need to focus on what you can control and stop worrying about the factors you can’t.
What can you control?
Your Finances: I’d be remiss if I didn’t start with the finance category. The past 12-months has turned everyone into supply chain and inflation experts. We get it, gas is a lot more expensive than it was 6-months ago. Your endless Instagram and Snapchat stories won’t change this. Instead of complaining and blaming others, maybe take a step back and ask yourself how you let an increase in gas prices erode your financial situation.
Same can be said with the stock market as it has been in correction territory. Again, not ideal nor fun to live through. But you endlessly watching the stock market and looking at your statements/accounts on a daily basis won’t change how the markets perform. Instead, focus on job stability and maintaining your source(s) of income. Your savings rate should be dictated by your values, goals, and a plan that considered these external factors such as inflation and fluctuations in the markets.
Your Health – does inflation and the Russia/Ukraine crisis impact your health? Maybe your stress level is through the roof, and you are directly impacted by this senseless war. For most of us, we can still take care of ourselves. By working out, going for walks, eating healthy; these are actions directly in our control. Some days we are too tired and are pulled by other priorities. But that is you reacting based on your feelings not your values. Identify your values, make choices based on those values, be grateful for your health, and work on your personal development.
Your Relationships – We all have people in our lives who we love and trust. Stay connected with them and continue to foster strong relationships. At the end of the day, the relationships we create is all we have to lean on. No matter what happens, you operate more efficiently and successfully when you work with people you trust and genuinely care about. Always find time to connect with these people whether its family, friends, or co-workers.
Your Mindset – It is so easy to become overwhelmed with external factors or our endless ‘to-do list’. When you focus on the negativity in life, that penetrates all your thoughts. Legendary investor Art Cashin once said, “Never bet on the end of the world, because it only happens once.” We need to be compelled to become stronger, wiser, better. You need to have the positives drive out the negatives. Build momentum and fight back!
Throughout our lives, we will be better off when we resist reacting. Some of us had older siblings who just wanted you to react. They wanted to know that they had real estate in your head or that they could control how you responded. Similar aspect with sports, your competitors wanted you to react and get away from your game plan. That’s when mistakes are made.
Reacting prevents us from controlling our own reality. So, during the ‘winter season’ and times of negativity, take a step back and remind yourself to focus on what you can control.
Disclosure: This material is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.