Thanks everyone for the emails and private tweets asking how I’m doing and where I am. I really appreciate your emails and I’ll get back to you all as soon as I can. I’m still here, still trading and I’ll have a few really chunky posts coming soon. Today though, I want to share with you a little story that made me smile. It is the perfect snapshot of everything that’s wrong – and everything that’s right – with your life.
My story begins as I was enjoying some downtime along the Northumberland coast with my family. We’d had a few weeks of gorgeous sunshine here so we decided to make the most of it and picnic on the beach in the blazing sun. It was the first time really that my two year old son had been able to run about in the sand so it was all good fun.
As it happens we ended up being not too far away from a couple (without children) in a rock-sheltered suntrap that had an excellent view of the small fishing boats as they bobbed up and down. We were close enough to see people come and go and for the little one to point ‘car! car!’ as they did.
After a fun-packed morning we were all hunkering around our picnic basket chomping away when a fisherman tied up his little boat and climbed out onto the beach not too far away from us. His basketfull of fresh fish was slung over his shoulder and he walked towards us.
As he walked between us and the couple next to us the man shouted over to the fisherman, “that’s a canny catch, how long did it take to catch them?”
“not too long,” replied the fisherman.
“but it’s only 1’oclock in the afternoon, don’t you want to stay out a bit longer and catch a few more?” asked the man. The fisherman shrugged his shoulders and looked at his basket of fish.
“I mean, if you stay out longer, you can catch a few more fish and make a bit more money.”
“Aye, maybe you’re right. But what then? ” asked the fisherman.
“Well, after a few months of selling extra fish you can buy a bigger boat and catch even more fish to sell for even more money.”
“Sounds good, and after that?”
“Then you can buy another boat and sell even more fish and just keep doing this until you have your own fleet! Once you have a fleet you see, you’ll be large enough to be able to cut out the middleman who you sell your fish to now and go straight to the processing plants, maybe even think about opening your own and make even more money.” said the man – a bit over excitedly if you ask me.
“That is interesting,” said the fisherman as he dropped his basket to the floor for a rest.
“I mean, if the ROI is right and the economic picture brightens up, you could even open up an office in London.”
“Wow, really? How long would all this take?”
“About 10 or 20 years.” The fisherman whistled, “Whew…and then what?”
“Well, this is when things start to get really interesting. See, when you get really big, you can start selling shares in your company and make millions!”
“Millions? Really? And what next?”
“Once you’ve done all that you’ll be able to retire, move to a house by the sea, sleep in late every day, spend loads of time with your family, spend afternoons napping under the sun and have evening drinks with friends and family. It’d be the perfect life!”
“But that’s exactly what I’m doing right now…” laughed the fisherman as he slung his basket over his shoulder and trodded off up the beach in the sun.
With all the stuff that you’re bludgeoned with every day, it can be hard to remember what really matters to you. But, like trading, when you strip everything away to the simplest form, what you’re left wanting is not too far away from what you already have.
Think about that today, and get some perspective.
ps. I can’t take credit for the story, I picked it up online and changed it to suit but it’s message – to me at least – is a powerful one. Stay happy people.