Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Being Brave Enough for Your Dreams

In 2006 I began trading stocks.  It came after my father telling me I should give it a try for nearly 20 years.  I didn't because I had too much resistance to my father and, once I was interested in the idea, I didn't have the means.  Like rappelling, trading stocks has been significant in that it had so many more gifts to offer than simply capital gains or dividends.

After much baggage I don't want to talk about, I had about $6000.00 to invest.  It was taking a bit of a risk because it represented more than half of my savings, so I tiptoed into the pool.  I only invested $1000.00 and my first purchase was only $281.00.  Ten shares of the Walt Disney Company at a share price of $28.10.  I typed my limit order (I had been watching Jim Cramer's "Mad Money") feeling as if someone was watching over my shoulder ready to challenge my right to do this.  The minute it showed up as being in my portfolio, I stared at it as if the numbers would immediately spin up or down like a gas pump.  In other words, I was ridiculously naive.  The second stock I bought was a royalty trust, SJT (San Juan Basin Royalty Trust,) a friend owned and recommended.  

While I'm writing this, I went to Scottrade to look up some of the information I was going to refer to and found myself drifting away and researching my stocks.  That's how I feel about stock trading.  I love it.  I find it intrinsically interesting BEYOND simply the potential to make money.  You need something like that.  You need two or three things that you don't do for the money.  You do them because you love to do them.  You do them because your life would have less in it without them.  

Now keep in mind, it took me years to believe in myself enough to give it a try and even after I did, I had to have the money needed to do it.  Then you have a learning curve.

The third stock I bought was Rinker Group.  An Australian cement company publicly traded (in 2006) on the NYSE as RIN.  I don't remember exactly how much it cost or how many shares I purchased.  What I do remember was within a week of me buying shares in that company, it received a takeover offer.  I was so excited and scared at the same time.  It was like I had a lighted firecracker in my fingers and I had to do something before it blew up in my hand.  I took the profit and "rang the register."  Honestly, it couldn't have been much.  I think I only had one share.  My experience combined with Jim Cramer talking about buyouts and takeovers taught me my first lesson.  If a buyout offer drives a stock you are holding up, take your profit.  Even though I got out in the first week of negotiations, I watched the Rinker buyout.  At the time I was so obsessed with potentially making a mistake, I couldn't do anything but watch to see if it all had turned out in my favor.  Or at least I thought I had.  While researching for this blog entry, I just discovered there was more to the story than I ever knew.  After I got out, I watched what happened.  In a long ugly battle, Cemex company (Ticker Symbol CX) of Mexico bought Rinker.  The stock never climbed as high as it had at the point where I sold it.  The thing I didn't know until today was that Cemex lost an antitrust suit about the purchase and the purchase was declared invalid.

Think about that.  Although I made only a little money, I made money on a transaction that was erased.  When you are working with the law of attraction, struggling with letting go of the "how I will attract this money," consider that.  I made money on a transaction that was erased.  Now tell me you've fully thought out all the ways money can come to you.

That's a pretty good point right there.  Thank you universe for that.  I was headed somewhere else.

Eight years ago, I decided to be brave enough to try a dream.  Today, not only do I still trade stocks, I still love it and I have gained bunches of confidence because of it.  Consider this:  back when I bought those ten shares of DIS?  I couldn't tell anyone other than my close friends what I was doing.  The "who are you to be doing this" anti-self-esteem headwind created too great a drag.  Now I can talk with other traders and, mostly?  Hold my own.

My point was simply to encourage you to give it a try.  Be brave enough to attempt just one of your dreams.  See where it takes you.

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