Why Humans Make Poor Investors

As humans, we're hardwired to make bad investment decisions...

But that same hardwiring kept our ancestors alive.

We tend to adopt a "herd mentality" – which is where we are drawn to think and act in the same way as the majority around us. Millennia ago, if you saw a group running away from something (before you could assess the danger yourself), you'd probably run away, too. And you're likely to have avoided coming face to face with a saber-toothed tiger.

In The Little Book of Behavioral Investing, author James Montier calls stepping out of the herd mentality a form of "social pain." We want to be a part of the group. We want someone to let us know we are right. We feel safer and more confident this way.

But Montier also quotes legendary investor Sir John Templeton... "It is impossible to produce superior performance unless you do something different from the majority."

When you follow the herd into or out of the markets, you're likely missing out on some of the best times to invest.

When you develop a truly unique view, and you're right, you're in place for the best returns.

Someone who agrees with that is my colleague, Mike Barrett. According to Mike...

If you want to make serious money in the market... the kind of money that can change your entire situation... then you've got to look beyond investing in stuff that's physical or well known.

You've got to invest in intellectual breakthroughs. In other words, new ways of thinking or doing things.

Mike looks for companies creating things that never existed before... or doing things within existing industries nobody ever imagined possible. And he has discovered a unique investment vehicle that can realistically make you 10 times your money... outside of penny stocks, cryptos, or options.

Click here to learn more.

Now, let's dig into some questions... As always, keep sending your comments, questions, and topic suggestions to [email protected]. My team and I really do read every e-mail.

Q: Did your research on hula hooping uncover any studies showing benefits for those of us with new hips for maintaining/increasing pelvic flexibility? – L.W.

A: Unfortunately, we did not find a single study in which folks with new hips underwent a hula hooping protocol. So we reached out to a local expert and clinic director, Dr. Pat Griffin.

According to Dr. Griffin, there's no reason a person can't return to hula hooping after a hip replacement. He also said that depending on the type of hip replacement that is done – a lateral (side of the hip) versus an anterior (front of the thigh) approach – you may have to wait a bit longer to get started with this goal.

But, Griffin continued, hula hooping offers an excellent form of exercise and range of motion. The only concern is if you're only experiencing pain while hula hooping.

So if you've had a hip replacement, hula hooping can be a great activity. It will strengthen your trunk muscles and improve your stability... Just don't do it on your own. Work with a physical therapist who is aware of your current physical limitations. Together, you can ease into this activity and avoid injury.

Q: I wear progressive spectacles that have a blue-light filter. How effective are these? Appreciating your take on this. – D.M.

A: A couple of my colleagues have tested the sort of blue-light-filtering glasses you mentioned. One didn't find them useful, while another swears by their effectiveness.

There isn't great science to back up the usefulness of blue-light-filtering glasses. Two small studies show some evidence of a decreased impact on your sleep when you wear the glasses, but not enough to draw any real conclusions.

For now, I'm skeptical.

Instead, here are three easy ways to limit your exposure to blue light that I urge you to start today...

1. Use a blue-light filter on your screens. Most tablets, e-readers, and cellphones come with this feature now. Here's how to do it on your computer and your phone.

2. Do what I do and turn off all electronics at least an hour before bed. Keeping electronics off, or out of the bedroom entirely, will create a sanctuary for sleep. That includes your phone – don't check it during the night or use it while trying to fall asleep.

3. Make mealtimes screen free. We've noticed a growing number of folks eating out at restaurants while glued to their phones. Not only is it rude, but a recent study from the University of British Columbia showed that this behavior undermines our own happiness.

What We're Reading...

Here's to our health, wealth, and a great retirement,

Dr. David Eifrig and the Health & Wealth Bulletin Research Team
September 1, 2023

Editor's note: Our offices will be closed on Monday, September 4 in observance of Labor Day. Look forward to your next issue of Health & Wealth Bulletin on Tuesday, September 5.