Helping you to better navigate life's changes. #LoveChange

A sensible dreamer’s guide to investing for life

A sensible dreamer’s guide to investing for life

When it comes to saving, uncertainty pays off in the long run.

In investing, uncertainty is often seen as the enemy. I’ve always thought this odd, considering that investing is about the future, which is uncertain.

“Live every day like it is your last” is a policy that works for me, except when it comes to saving. Then I try to stick to: “Live every day like it is your last, while saving as if you are going to live forever”.

I am a dreamer. I am also desperate for stability. We are taught that it comes from dedicated planning and long-term discipline.

I reconcile by corralling as much of my energy as I can into taking care of serious business while enjoying the ride on my side hustle, which is all about embracing uncertainty.

Whether it is my formal retirement savings plan, my crypto dreams or my fractional property fantasies, I hope my investments will add up. Some of my dreams and schemes are more likely to hit the target than others, but nothing is really certain.

In investing, uncertainty is often seen as the enemy. I’ve always thought this odd, considering that investing is about the future, which is uncertain.

That said, I know some things are so likely that we can safely feel sure about them.

Saving hard and sensibly all your working life, for example, will probably mean that you’ll have enough money to sustain your lifestyle until the end. Also, investing for retirement has tax benefits.

And, for anyone who worries that “give us your money, we’ll give you a lot more back when you are retired” smacks of a scam, the fact that the taxman is being taken for a ride with you should be reassuring.

Most of my efforts and almost all my savings are entrusted to the retirement fund and the tax-free savings account. This is a land of calculations, percentages, performance expectations, long-term planning, patience and leaving your feelings at the door.

Anything left over goes to The Dreamer in me. She’s all about gut feel, following your heart, and “anything can happen”.

The Sensible One checks her monthly statements to see that things are still on track and that the numbers add up. She studiously ignores the daily news urging her to buy this or sell that.

She keeps her eyes fixed on the future. Hers is a serious business, this is money we cannot afford to lose.

The Dreamer is on the internet every day, looking at her small investment portfolio, researching and reading success stories about innovators (and some tales of disaster).

A wise person once said to me, “Never lend money that you cannot afford to lose.” That rule applies to The Dreamer’s allowance.

Fear of poverty in my old age and the tax benefits today keep me saving into an official retirement savings product. Hope and FOMO keep me investing in the “less certain” options.

To be honest, certainty is a bit overrated. Uncertainty is a reflection of the dynamic and ever-changing world we live in, the magic force that drives innovation, adaptation, and growth.

Buying into fractional property seems like a no-brainer, and my little punt on cryptos is building nicely. It is fun and interesting to find out what innovative people are doing and what the younger generation is investing in.

And then there are investments that just feel good. For me, taking part in crowdfunding for solar panels for schools for the disabled and homes for the blind has been an all-round winner.

It feels so good that pocketing the dividends I get paid almost feels criminal. I reinvest my dividends for the benefit of others, and for more dividends, of course.

I monitor my retirement savings pot, knowing it will keep me alive one day. But I get so much pleasure from the other little investments, the uncertain ones.

Having these projects may even turn out to be super-lucrative one day but, for now, they keep me connected to the world around me and invested in futures other than my own.

Capo Cassidy

Change expert, Capo Cassidy, believes that the big change equals big opportunity.

Related stories

The Change Programme

Are you thinking about making a change? Or trying to make a change? Or dealing with some change that’s happened? Whether you’re getting married or having a baby, moving house or jobs, starting a diet or stopping smoking… the Change Programme is for you.

Start the programme now!

black and white pattern