Forget education - LEARN TO SURF!

in money •  23 days ago

Given the choice of going to school or surfing, if you live near the ocean it is a pretty easy one to make. But has anyone ever told you that surfing is really the best education you can have?

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I learned this in my teenage years. My buddies and I would routinely jump in the back of my mate Alan's VW microbus (or "KombiVan" as they would call it in Australia), and head down to the coast to spend days riding the waves. Some days it was flat and we'd just hang out at the beach. Other days it was epic. Great swell, great times.

I never realized that lying on top of a surfboard out there in the ocean, looking out to the horizon for the next set of waves to appear, was the best education in life I could ever get. Why? Because when you realize that you can't battle nature, and have to learn from it, and learn to work WITH it, you start to really learn. You see, out there in the ocean there are no professors and no degrees. There is just you, the sun, your board, nature and time. Maybe a few sharks, if you don't have luck on your side.

The one thing I learned from surfing is that it is all about timing. You can't catch a wave after it has passed you by. You can't catch a wave if it is upon you and you didn't see it coming. You have to see it looming on the horizon, get into position and paddle well before it gets to you. If you made a good call, you would be in the right place at the right time and the wave will pick you up and propel you on the ride of a lifetime. While you are on that ride, it is up to you how you handle yourself on it, but if you never got picked up, then the opportunity sweeps you by.

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You see, waves are always there. Some days they are small and other days they are big. But unless you are willing to go out and get wet, you can't enjoy the surf. You can't experience surf from the beach - watching it doesn't give you the experience. You can't enjoy it on TV. You have to be in the ocean. In the water. In the thick of things.

You won't often know of the opportunity until you are out there either. I mean what looks good from the shore doesn't necessarily look good in the water. There are cycles of waves and they come in sets. You learn this. You learn to try and predict the sets. You learn to position yourself in front of the sets so that the wave picks you up. You can't battle against it. You can't fight it. You can't yell at it and tell it what to do. It is pure nature and success comes simply from your willingness to submit to it, and your ability to learn from its behavior.

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Business is no different. If your future is in front of you, how are you going to handle yourself? Will you let a professor who probably hasn't achieved success in their life yet tell you how to surf? Or do you have the willingness and passion to go out there and get wet? You can't learn to stand up on a board from the shore. You have no idea about balance until you are out there, and you WILL fall down. Over and over again. Eventually you will get it. But until you've been wiped out many times, you won't. It is all theory. Only practice matters here.

Making money is no different. The wealthiest people in the world are not the best educated. They are the ones that were willing to get wet, learned early about wipe-outs, fell off, got back up, fell off, got back up. Eventually they learned that they can't battle nature. They learned that the secret was to see the opportunity on the horizon before everyone else and to be in the best position to catch it and prosper.

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You see, you can be well educated and poor. Just ask Robert Kiyosaki, author of "Rich Dad, Poor Dad". But you could be an expert surfer, pick your waves ahead of time and be well prepared in how to ride them and be wealthy. Bragging to your buddies about your 6 figure salary is an empty motion, when someone who understands that all things in the universe come in cycles and that if you learn not to try and control the cycles but to time the opportunity and be ready to act. The true mega-wealthy got that way because they know how to surf in financial & business markets. It is not that they are any smarter than you are. It is that they know how to surf.

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Nice post @k0d3g3ar I enjoyed it. Based on your other posts it sounds like you think the next wave will he a debt crisis in the United States.

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It is hard to really know what will come in the next 12-18 months. I think it is clear that the equities markets are over-valued, and that precious metals such as Gold & Silver are undervalued. To me that signals where to put money right now. But like all waves, you have to position just prior to the wave having enough kinetic energy that it is willing to give it up and let you have some. That's where detailed timing comes in. Sitting out there on a board, waiting for the "big one" could be a long wait. And the opportunity costs of doing that means you must have faith that the wait is worthwhile. For me, it is. But I don't have a lot of day to day gearing issues that stops me from being willing to wait. Everyone's mileage will vary there.

I hate to think that we have entered a time where everything is boom & bust. But clearly money is not what it used to be. It is now just an electronic form of IOU that isn't backed by anything, and banks have become more casinos than stalwart holders of our capital. Unless we see some rational movement towards a more stable and backed representation of wealth, we are probably going to see booms & busts for the foreseeable future.

The next one? My suspicion is that the emerging markets, particularly India, China & Brazil, will likely trigger a severe economic change. The biggest driver in my mind is population growth. We are unsustainable at best right now, and that will trigger a run on resources in regions that have high population density. Unless those regions are willing spread out a bit, it will drive up real estate pricing to levels that are unrealistic, and result in a collapse if people cannot afford to put a roof over their heads.

It is one thing to focus solely on artificial marketplaces like the stock market, but they don't represent real human lives. They represent speculation on what corporations are doing and it's all like playing a game of poker where you don't know what the future hand is going to be, but you have to bet on something. To me, when markets became less about people coming together to buy & sell products, food, etc. and they became a bunch of rich folk in suits buying quantity of some ticker symbol without really knowing anything about the fundamentals of what the organization is doing, that we started the downward spiral.

The reality is that the future will be about mechanization and machines doing the work human labor used to do. I don't have a problem with that - smart should win out. But the displacement of labor as a result will be a challenge that society has to find answers for. Hopefully there will be emerging opportunities that open up new industries that can provide safe haven for the dispelled labor force. I just also hope that people realize that they don't have to live in a big urban city in order to thrive; if opportunities are digital, then you are blessed with the ability to work, communicate and make money anywhere on this planet, and that can only help spread the burden of resource consumption on our planet.

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Thank you @k0d3g3ar I find your posts and comments refreshing. You remind me of some of my educated friends, the ones that know more about the economy and investments than me.

  • What are your thoughts about hyper-inflation?

  • Do you think the currency crises that hit Venuezala and Turkey will spread to other countries.

Thank you for taking time out of your day to reply 😊


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My general sense is that the western world that has reserve banking systems and well equipped economists, will use interest rates to manage economic response to inflation before hyper-inflation can set in. I mean it is a fear of any western economist to not go down the same path as other countries have with their currencies. The US is the "Petro Dollar" and is effectively the world currency when it comes to inter-country banking, etc. so there are many, many more stakeholders in the success of the USD. That doesn't mean hyper-inflation cannot happen, but the more stakeholders typically means the more careful management that takes place. I still believe that unless a currency is backed by something rare and limited, that it will have a hard time avoiding being played like a chip in a casino. However there are too many with too much to lose resting on the USD so I'd be inclined to see it as "stable" at this point.

Venezuela and Turkey have currencies that are typically limited to their geographic region. You don't buy goods & services with those currencies from outside of the country for the most part. They are far more exposed to manipulation and mismanagement, and that is reflecting on the local economies in those regions.

All of this typically provides more validity and weight behind a universally accepted currency that shares limitation in issuance and scarcity that is not currently part of our economic system. I'm a firm believer that Bitcoin resolves most of these issues, however until it has wider adoption, the price is subject to wide fluctation. If we see $10T of valuation for it, we might then see some stabilization but at this time it is too early to tell if it will prevail.

Brilliant metaphor and write up, well said mate. Before I even began reading the post I was instantly reminded of investing and crypto.

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Yep. Cycles are active in all areas of the universe from money to moon cycles, weather, reproduction, etc. Investing in anything involves a willingness to get into the market and observe and look for the cycles to determine if it is the right time to acquire or sell. Good luck.

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