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Monday, December 9, 2013

4 Life Lessons Nelson Mandela Taught Us That Can be Applied to Investing

Nelson Mandela was well loved for bringing peace to South Africa and ending oppression and racial inequalities to his people. Even in his death, he continues to inspire the World by his ideals. While he is not exactly an icon in investing, the lessons he embodied throughout his life will inspire investors in their own search for finding financial freedom. Here are four qualities he showed the World that can be embodied by every investors:

1. Age is never a hindrance to succeed.
When Mandela was imprisoned, he was 44. By the time he got out he was already 72. He was elected president of his nation four yeas later. Except for the time when he started to have health problems, he continued to champion the people to achieve sustainable peace.

You will hear a lot of people being hesitant in starting to invest, and one of their common reasons is that the're too old to start something so new. Investing has no age requirement. If you start undervaluing yourself and say something like "but I'm not Nelson Mandela!". Please. Before he did great things, he was also just an ordinary man.

2. He did not let his emotions take over him.
Even after he was imprisoned for 27 years, one of his first acts after he was set free was to seek reconciliation and urge forgiveness from his oppressors. He did not have any bitterness or hatred in him. He knew that he needed to let go of whatever pains he experienced for a larger goal.

In making decisions on investing, we must always get our emotions intact and never let rumors affect us. There will always be hype and misleading information, but when the fog is thick and the market is full of noise, our sound investing principles will guide us through.

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3. He did not waver on his optimism.
Nelson Mandela has always been the face of the anti-apartheid movement. He never abandoned what he was fighting for even when behind bars. He believed that he will prevail in fighting racism and inequality despite being convicted of conspiracy to throw the state and being sentenced to life imprisonment.

At times when the market is down and investments are not performing as well as we'd hope, it is so easy to doubt ourselves and abandon our investment principles. Like Mandela, it takes a lot of courage to stick with our goals and stay confident in our decisions.

4. He studied rigorously.
Before he became an icon for fighting racism, he studied law where he gained most of his ideals. He secretly received military training in Morocco and Ethiopia. He continued studying in prison and month before his release, he obtained a bachelor's in law in absentia.

Choosing the right investments, fundamental and technical analysis, financial ratios, bull and bear market - These are just some of the concepts that we constantly need to study to be an above average investor. Even if you become successful in investing, don't be satisfied with what you know, because the moment you do is the moment you lose what you have achieved.

In our investing decisions we often look up to experts who have done and proved what strategies are effective and best to use in any market condition. But we must not neglect the inspiring lessons non-investors teach us because it can also help shape our ideals and strengthen our principles. Nelson Mandela has encouraged people around the World to be brave and take chances, just as investors need to be steadfast and take risks. Mandela proved the popular route is not always right, and if you know you're right, the criticisms will eventually fade. Thank you, Madiba.

There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living. - Nelson Mandela

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