A lot of investors get hung up on a simple question: "Is now the right time to put my money in the market?"
The truth is, if you're not already properly planning for retirement, it's always the right time to start investing...
When it comes to investing, our impulse to do nothing is strong. Especially during a time when the stock market keeps hitting new highs. Lots of folks wonder if they've missed out on the best gains already or if there's a crash looming on the horizon.
That doesn't mean you can haphazardly throw money into stocks. There are plenty of stocks that won't be around in 10 years. No matter how strong the business is, few stocks last forever.
Consider Kodak (KODK), the photography company based in Rochester, New York.
Kodak was the Apple of its day. As the prime inventor of camera film, the company was on the constant edge of innovation. As late as the 1970s, it sold 90% of the film and 85% of the cameras in the U.S. But the end came fast for Kodak...
In early 1990s, digital cameras hit the consumer market... and almost immediately undermined Kodak's analog camera and film business. In 2012, the company filed for bankruptcy. Lots of shareholders ended up with nothing.
And yet, some stocks that seem overhyped just keep on going...
In 2012, Netflix (NFLX) was on a tear. In just four years, the stock had soared more than 200%. Investors thought that, at such an inflated price, Netflix shares couldn't go much higher. Since the end of 2012, shares of Netflix have gone higher... more than 4,700% higher.
It might seem impossible to know where to invest right now. That's why you need someone with their boots on the ground to help you sift through the noise.
On Wednesday, our newest analyst, Matt McCall, did something for the first time in his career... He shared his secret to finding the most extraordinary winners in the U.S. stock market. And Matt has an incredible track record...
- In 2014, he predicted bitcoin's extraordinary comeback. (It's up over 10,000% since his recommendation.)
- He nailed the rise of cannabis stocks... electric vehicles... and every one of the FAANG companies.
- And he helped people take advantage of these huge predictions... by recommending over 200 investments that skyrocketed – anywhere from 100% to 10,000%.
But what most people don't know is how he did it.
If you missed Matt's presentation, where he explained how he picks 10-baggers, discussed the destructive lie you're being told about your wealth, and shared why he's calling the next decade the "Roaring 2020s," click here to catch up.
Now let's get into this week's Q&A... As always, please keep sending your questions and comments to [email protected].
Q: Thanks for all your recent advice on meditation but what about those of us who can't get our brains to shut up? Any tips? – S.C.
A: Getting your brain to shut up is one of the obstacles I hear about most. Even my mind wanders, but stick to it... Eventually you'll get better at controlling your thoughts.
Here's what I do:
- I sit upright in bed, propped up with about four pillows, but place none behind my head or neck. I try to keep my head perfectly balanced on my neck, so that if I'm absolutely relaxed, my head won't tip over.
- Next, I begin saying my mantra – a two-syllable word you repeat silently to yourself throughout the process. It can be a word like "Two-Ray" or "Oom-Day." I try to time my breath with each syllable. I inhale with one and exhale with the other.
- I stay focused on relaxing and breathing slowly, but I also lightly focus on the mantra sound.
- Often I find that my mind will wander – all the things I need to do, or things I've forgotten to do, flood my consciousness. When those thoughts flow in, I catch myself and turn my focus back to my breath and the mantra. I do so slowly, almost in a respectful way, without judgement or frustration. After all, this shifting to a quieter head space is part of the process.
- After a few attempts, I can find my breath again and notice my thoughts slowing down.
- My attention returns to my breath and the mantra.
- After 15 minutes or so, I quietly and slowly take a few minutes to start to move my toes and fingers... and then my arms and legs, as I slowly come out of the "relaxation state."
And as we mentioned in our recent series on mindfulness and meditation, apps are a great assistant. Health & Wealth Bulletin Managing Editor Laura tells me she has the same problem. She finds using apps like Headspace or the meditation classes offered by Peloton gives her a way to focus, helping to quiet her mind.
I hope you'll continue to try meditation. Good luck!
Q: I'm wondering if you could clear up some seemingly contradictory health advice regarding the benefits/dangers of exposing our bodies to the cold.
Back in the June 21 Health & Wealth Bulletin e-mail, you passed along advice from Wim Hof, encouraging people to spend a few minutes under cold water at the end of their showers. (In fact, Hof goes even further than this, earning his nickname, the Iceman.)
In your e-mail dated October 5, you relate how you bundle up whenever the outside temperatures fall below 40-50 degrees and encourage folks to do the same.
In my own experience, shivering under cold water or shivering on my walk from the parking lot to my office building for a couple of minutes are pretty similar experiences. Is there some difference between the two that makes one good for you but the other detrimental?
Best regards. – C.P.
A: Thanks for your astute observations, C.P. In these two scenarios, it's not the temperature that warrants a change in behavior: it's the amount of moisture in the air around you. When it's warm, water in the environment can transform into its vaporous state, but the same is not true when it's cold – you get solid water instead.
The lack of moisture in the winter air dries out your sinuses. You may notice that your skin also gets chapped and dry during this time of year. When your sinuses are dry, they don't produce as much mucous, which is a problem. Mucous is what traps airborne infections – blocking viruses and bacteria from entering your body. As a result, you're more likely to get sick if you're not producing an adequate amount of mucous.
A cold shower, however, is a moisture-rich environment. And because you're likely in the privacy of your own home while showering, any germs you're exposed to already belong to you. But the key here is really that the moisture from your shower hydrates your sinus tissue.
In fact, by wearing a scarf that covers your mouth and nose while outdoors in the cold, you create a more moisture-rich environment for your nasal passages. The heat from your body keeps your breath both warmer and wetter than the outside air, and when it hits the fabric of your scarf, it condenses into water droplets. Thus, you create an environment that supports the needs of the tissue that lines your sinuses.
What We're Reading...
- Did you miss our mindfulness meditation series? Catch up here: Part I, Part II, Part III.
- Something different: The latest victim of the supply chain crisis? Pizza.
Here's to our health, wealth, and a great retirement,
Dr. David Eifrig and the Health & Wealth Bulletin Research Team
October 22, 2021