Investing and Creativity

A talking head on television the other day said, “It takes deep creativity to find quality investment opportunities.”

Is this true?

If investing is about creativity, how come so many members of our community cover their ears the second an investing discussion begins? Why aren’t we the best investors of all?

In fact, when I think of investing, I don’t think about artists. I think about button down suits and Wall Street types. Maybe we’ve been wrong all along.

I think the talking head is right. We should be the world’s best investors. Legendary mutual fund manager Sir John Templeton built a reputation on always looking left automatically if the crowd was gazing to the right. That sounds like our community, doesn’t it? We see the unexpected, feel what others miss, and bring life to what others pass over as the mundane pieces of the world.

Imagine how rich we’d be if we applied our natural abilities to good financial management!

We can apply our abilities to financial planning. We can be great investors. All it requires is for us to overlay the areas where we already excel onto a new palate of good financial habits.

5 Skills Artists Can Use To Be Great Investors

1) Dream. A successful investment plan requires good goal setting. As artists, we’re great at letting our mind take us on adventures. When I meet with non-artistic people, they have real trouble in this area. A good plan needs a great vision.

To do: What are your goals? Write out what you want, when you want it, how it will look, and why it’s important to you.

2) Ask questions. Those of us who act are always looking for the motivation behind our characters. This should be easy to apply to investments. What motivation would cause me to use a CD? …life insurance? …to invest in the stock market?

To do: Take any good financial book and start asking “why.” Let your questions guide your research.

3) Dive deep. While I wouldn’t say that artists are the world’s best researchers, we always look for what’s behind the curtain. Once we’ve begun asking the difficult questions others miss, we dive into the project with gusto.

People ask classical musicians “Why do you work so hard? There’s very little chance you’ll ever be famous?” Yet, if you know any (or happen to be one), you’ll know that they dive deeper and deeper into the music. Our ability to focus, as artists, should allow us to get more done than most others, when it comes to investing.

To do: Make a list of what you’ll need to know better to reach your goal. Dive into it!

4) Find good coaching. The best artists I know learned from someone else. Sure, they were equipped with natural talent, but to hone that skill took practice and the knowledge of someone who’s been there before.

To do: Begin searching for the right type of coaching to help you manage funds well. Don’t just hand it off to someone…look for help!

5) Hold firm when everyone else gives up. “Buy and hold” is a time-tested strategy in the investing world. Yet investors constantly lose money by panicking when markets go bad.

Great artists have the fortitude to forget the markets and the pressures felt by others, and stick it out. While this didn’t always make them rich, it did make sure that they took their time and avoided making bad moves with money.

To do: Begin saving and stick to your plan! You can do it!

2012-08-09T09:00:23+00:00