Ghosts, zombies, monsters—these are what you should be afraid of, not investing.
By: Mark Ferdinand Canoy, Vida Lacano
Hello, people of the Internet. Are any of these things reflective of your current outlook in life?
- You are scared to fail in something
- You are scared to be taken advantage of
- You are scared to work with numbers but don’t want to admit it
- You are scared to lose money
If majority of these statements resonate with you, then you (and we’re betting a large number of other people) may have this petrifying fear of investing. Trust us when we say it is normal to fear the embodiment of numbers + life decisions, but it shouldn’t stop you from seeking a better life with good assets tied to your name.
Why is it important to invest?
Unless you belong to a very wealthy, Rockefelleresque family or the sky opens up and rains cold cash for you to just catch and save away, then you will only have two sources for money: your work and your investments. While most of us can attain financial liquidity with just having a job, we can still suffer from setbacks. Economy, inability to settle with your job, getting laid off, etc. In today’s day and age, paycheck money may already be a fleeting thing. That said, having a sound investment, such as owning a property, is very important as it allows you to extend your income through monthly external leasing, or at the very least, ensures that you have a place to call your home even at retirement.
Now let’s flesh out the above mentioned things that make up your fear of investing, and what you can do to counter these doubts and worries:
1. You are scared to fail in something
For one, failure is relative. Of course, you are bound to fail if you’re doing something you have absolutely no idea of. To counter this particular layer of fear means arming yourself with investment knowledge–even if it means asking for professional help or advice, because really, who else should know this more than brokers and property investment advisors? You can also ask around within the confines of your familial network–we’re pretty sure that you have titos and titas who have done investment right. You can be sure to get nuggets of wisdom from people who have actually tried and done it and reaping the rewards for everyone to see.
2. You are scared to be taken advantage of
This is pretty much tied to conquering item # 1: arming yourself with knowledge about the intricacies of investment means never having to be sold out by scamming individuals who prey on people who don’t know anything. See? Read this paragraph out loud and you’ll realize that it’s basically a cycle that you yourself can break.
3. You are scared to work with numbers but don’t want to admit it
You’re not alone. There are many people who actually experience math anxiety brought about by dreadful, often traumatic encounter with numbers. But a wise columnist/multi-awarded professor once said “the thing with math is, the only way to overcome fear is for you to succeed. There is no other way.” Find an advisor who you can trust and who’s willing to take you through the problem-solving part of investment in ways that you will be able to grasp. There’s no need to hurry. Make your trusted advisor calculate terms in front of you, explaining every detail of how he or she got to the bottom of every equation. If you can’t understand how the first set of terms were computed, then you can’t go on to the next equation. Learn until you get it. Easier said than done, but if your heart and mind is on it, you will get it.
4. You are scared to lose money
Money is hard to come by. That’s why it is understandable if people would rather hold on to it than risk investing it in something. But realize that a lot of the things we do entails risking things: making work decisions, driving, even eating! Now, these everyday risks can be reduced by knowing and learning. If you always seem to get a stomachache from eating at a particular diner, then chances are, food handling may not be that good there. Therefore, avoiding that diner is the rational thing to do. The same train of thoughts apply when you invest. You reduce the risks when you understand the basics and understand the cause and effect of every decision you make. So again, get someone who can teach you how to invest right. Ask a lot of questions. The more you learn, the more you eradicate your fear of risking.
Once you’ve overcome these fears, you’re most likely set for your first investment. Good luck! We know you can do it.