Sitting at that table, I'll never forget that horrible feeling.
I have no freaking idea what he's talking about.
The man talking to me couldn't have been nicer. He was honestly trying to help me. And I'm not a dumb person (or so I thought).
But, seriously, I had no clue what I was looking at.
I had been a tennis pro for a while. My clientele was increasing rapidly. And for the first time in my life, I had some money in my pocket.
In tennis, there's no retirement plan. If you're not on the court, you don't get paid. So if I wanted to ever leave the court, my money had to start making money.
That's why I talked to a student who called his dad (a financial advisor) and asked him if he could help me start investing. That's why we were at the table.
I think we were talking about mutual funds, but I still don't really know. He took his time and tried to help me understand. It wasn't working. All I heard was gobbledygook.
So what did I finally decide to do? Given the fact that this was probably the biggest decision of my life and also given the fact I had zero understanding of what was going on, what did I choose?
Did I thank him for his time, admit I was in over my head, and tell him I needed some time to get up to speed? Did I then take several months to research all my options find out what was best for me?
Nope. I signed the papers.
In the months that followed, I would peruse my statements--and I still didn't understand any of it. To this day, I couldn't even tell you if my funds made money.
I have a terrible feeling I'm not alone.
We all have problems. We have work problems and health problems and family problems and loneliness problems and happiness problems and financial problems.
Everybody's going through something.
But here's the thing: money can cure all of that.
More money would allow us to leave our jobs. It would allow us to get better medical help. It would allow us to help out our family, make us more attractive, give us freedom to do what makes us happy, and make financial difficulties disappear.
Money may not solve everything, but don't bet on it.
So if money can be a huge positive factor in our lives, how do we get it? If we only have a small amount, how can we start making that small amount grow? If we have a good chunk saved up, how do we make that work for us so that we can retire and be free?
Who knows how to do this? Who knows how to effectively invest their money?
In 2003, it wasn't me (not even close). And the more I talk to people, the more I see that a lot of people are in that same boat.
We all need to know how to invest our money and yet no one knows how to do it.
Well, there are some elite people out there that know (Buffett, Soros, Dalio, Cohen), but they're not telling us.
And the people that do tell us what they do (mutual fund managers) underperform the market in borderline criminal ways.
It's a crisis.
So what do we do? Do we just sit at the table with an advisor, sign up for accounts we don't understand, and blindly hope we end up with money twenty years later?
Are we all just stuck with a huge problem and no solution?
No, there's a solution.
Recently, in an effort to fix this investing crisis, the exerts have come up with a cure.
A terrible one.
And we'll get to that solution in episode 2 next week.
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