Solving Your Own Problems
Stephanie Pomboy Tweeted that "QE robbed a generation of their retirement. now they're taking all the jobs away from new entrants. LF participation of 20-24yr olds=lowest in 45 years and for 18-19yr olds it's stuck at the lowest in history." On a similar note Yahoo Finance did a pretty serious take down on James Altucher over his relationship with Agora Financial the company behind all of the cryptocurrency ads we all see on the internet. Read the article but it talks about people paying a lot of money for newsletters that anecdotally were disappointing. The article also went after the hype in the marketing about how much you could make in a very short period of time.
Both of these tie into a hot button of mine. To Pomboy's Tweet everyone faces adversity in their careers and to the Yahoo Finance piece, it baffles me that people still fall for hyped up investment pitches. Both the Tweet and the article give permission to blame others for misfortune as opposed to being accountable for circumstances and decisions. Paraphrasing Joe Moglia, no one will care about your financial well being more than you.
To Pomboy's point, if you need to work and are faced with a layoff or other adverse career situation (I have had both), no one will solve the problem for you, you need to solve your own problems. While Pomboy's Tweet includes grim stats, grim stats have been part of the landscape since the tech wreck in terms of under-employment, slow job growth (until recently) and so on.
To the hyped ads about making x-thousand percent in some short period of time, we all learned as children that something that seems too good to be true, usually is. The hyped up ads play to people's greed. Greed along with fear are what lead to the worst investment decisions people can make. This includes shelling out $2000 for a newsletter that purports to make you rich. As the Yahoo Finance article points out, even the money-back-guarantees can be complicated. It's not that there isn't value to be had in subscription services but capital markets are a place to get rich slowly with discipline, there will never be short cuts to this.
Occasionally there will be massive home runs in your investing, maybe once or twice in a lifetime, or maybe not but a crucial point of understanding is being able to tell when you've been lucky and the realization that luck isn't the same thing as repeatable process.
This might be seem like a harsh viewpoint but both of these issues, solving your own problems and managing the sense of greed, are behavioral, we can manage what we do by being optimistic and and moving forward where career challenges are concerned and realize when someone is playing to our sense of greed when we see an ad promising 1000% in a year.
In remaining optimistic and plugging away to overcome career obstacles, people want to help people who come across as being motivated and willing to work hard to solve their own problems. I've been on both sides of that conversation and I am telling you it is true but you have to be sincere, only you know if that's the case. In terms of getting rich slowly in the markets, in the last ten years the S&P 500 is up 111%. That obviously includes the financial crisis. If you didn't panic sell in early 2009 and you continued to put money away the whole time then you should be much better off now than you were ten years ago. Ten years is a long time, even if it went by quickly, and you are richer for it. You've gotten rich-er slowly.