Think positive. It's a great antidote for the world we live in. And feeling good can benefit your personal finances. The idea is that if you become passionate about your investing, success should follow.
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Some people seem to be born with a negative attitude to all that comes their way. And it hampers them from getting ahead because they can't dream.
I mull a lot about how to turn negative thinking around. This is so important for personal finance as well as many other aspects of life.
Here are some reasons to be happy about your personal finances:
- Interest rates are at their lowest levels in decades. That makes paying your mortgage much easier. Enjoy it while it lasts.
- We've just been through one of the most calamitous financial periods in modern history and guess what? The sky didn't fall in my friend Chicken Little. I feel for those people who have lost their jobs or businesses. But they're the minority and most people still have their incomes and investments intact.
- The government guarantees your bank deposits – and even some finance company debentures. That's a really positive outcome from the credit crunch. New Zealanders now get a protection that has long been the norm in countries such as the UK.
- Financial advisers are now regulated, which in theory should mean fewer rogues can get away with taking investors for a ride. They're also required to belong to an independent dispute resolution service.
- House prices appear to have stopped their upwards rise in most areas, which is great news if you want to get on the housing ladder.
- The New Zealand dollar is high, which benefits you if you want to buy overseas investments, desire imported goods, or want to take a holiday abroad.
- Kiwisavers can now take advantage of the government first home deposit subsidy if they've been saving for three years.
- The cup half empty brigade will always find a way to turn each of these positives into negatives. People like these remind me of the businessman who told Henry Ford in 1903: "The horse is here to stay. The automobile is only a fad."
- I'm a great believer in the American approach to getting your head read. It's the norm in North America, but viewed with suspicion here. Everybody carries mental baggage from childhood that holds many people back in their finances and life in general. It needn't.
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Over the years I've interviewed many a successful investor who overcame such hurdles by:
- Reading self-help books (but they're not all created equal)
- Getting a life, financial or business coach
- Attending counselling or seeing a psychotherapist (the latter being a better-trained version of the former).
Do you have any helpful hints on how to stay positive about your money/investments?