This Time It’s Different — Or Is It?
According to Sir John Templeton, “the four most expensive words in the English language are ‘this time it’s different'”.
History repeats itself over and over again. It just all seems new to the people experiencing it for the first time.
For example, it’s easy to forget that the financial world has nearly been brought to its knees multiple times in the distant (and recent) past. Things in the recent past are naturally fresher in our minds, but they aren’t unique.
There’s a long history of booms and busts and panics and bubbles.
So what’s the best thing to do when it comes to investing? Personally, I have no idea, beyond trying to remain cognizant of the costly mistakes of the past. We can’t expect different results when we do the same things repeatedly.
I’m not an experienced investor by any means. I didn’t start trying to learn anything about investing until a couple of years ago.
Since then, I’ve seen my investments drop by as much as 40%, return to where they started from, push into positive territory, and (most recently) take another hit.
I’m going to continue to try to avoid repeating both my own mistakes and the mistakes of others, and to try to use philosophies similar to those of investors who have successful, long-term track records.