A Lesson From Two Buffett’s
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I was reading ‘The Essays of Warren Buffett’ last week and I jotted down some quotes that stood out to me. This was one of them:
“Charlie and I have never been in a big hurry: We enjoy the process far more than the proceeds.”
Warren is a businessman and an investor. He manages incredibly large sums of money and hopes to grow that wealth substantially every year. With the nickname ‘Oracle of Omaha’ he’s been doing well.
He’s a subscriber to the 1% formula. He’s looking for small, consistent improvement that over time will generate BIG results.
He knows that a dollar that generates 1% interest every day will become $37.78 in 1 year and $1427.59 over two years.
Warren doesn’t quite get those results, but he looks for long-term investments that gradually grow in value over time.
We can all learn something from Warren Buffett. This guy knows how to think long-term.
Here’s where slow and steady wins the race.
Growing Your Business – Don’t blow all your money on day one. Take some time to learn the market, the customers, and the strategies everyone else is knows. This will take months or years and that’s okay.
Health and Fitness – No matter how many pushups you do today, it won’t make a difference unless you keep it up long-term. Better to keep up a small workout over the long term than attempt to ‘get healthy’ with one massive workout without any follow-up.
Learning a Language – Just a few minutes a day of language practice is all you need, over a year or two you’ll gain a lot of ground. If you just buy a dictionary and study it for one week and then lose interest you’ll forget everything you learned just as quickly.
Most other long-term goals, whether you want to be a great soccer player, artist, or scientist.
A Lesson From A Different Buffett
Warren Buffett isn’t the only person I look to for life-long advice.
Personally, I doubt Warren is a very good singer, so when I want wisdom mixed with a lyrical tune turn on some Jimmy Buffett.
Jimmy Buffett, who’s music I heard playing in the house throughout my childhood, has also taught me something I’m grateful for; the value of breaking from the 1% formula to have some fun.
Really, when was the last time you got that excited for a 1% change??
As I’ve traveled around the world I’ve certainly had my ‘Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes‘ moments and I’ve “ran into a chum with a bottle of rum” many, many times.
I had my Cheeseburger in Paradise in the Philippines, and sometimes it did feel a little like Margaritaville.
There are times to be spontaneous, have fun, and do something worth remembering. Sometimes you’d be better off diving in.
If I had only chosen safe 1% changes I would never have left for Asia in the first place. You can’t get to Asia 1% every day or you’d drown in the Pacific! I had to take the big leap.
I like being able to make a 100% change in just a few hours. I didn’t want to gradually learn about Asia. I wanted to land in Bangkok right away!
As digital nomads, we pride ourselves on the ability to go from California to Colombia in a matter of hours.
Learning From Both Buffett’s
There are times when Warren Buffet’s 1% strategy is your friend. As Einstein said, “Compound interest is the 8th wonder of the world.” It’s wonderful when your business, your health, and your finances grow slowly and steadily without too much excitement.
But there’s also a time to listen to Jimmy Buffett, when its best to throw out the long-term strategy and “Just Get Drunk And Screw“. You probably won’t regret it.
While I plan on eventually returning to Asia I know it’s possible I’ll never see Chiang Mai, Laos, or Hanoi again. I’m grateful for the times I deviated from the ‘master plan’ to try something new that caught my attention.
You need to decide what parts of your life you want to protect, build habits around, and grow slowly and consistently. Then you can decide where you want to be spontaneous, throw caution to the wind, and have unscheduled fun.
If you master this balance you’ll see steady improvement no matter which continent you find yourself living on. You can spend today exploring, learning, and being curious.
Years later, whether you decide to travel forever or eventually settle down (as I assume most young digital nomads will) you’ll have a strong foundation built over many years that will be there to help you.
Looking to make a big change? How about having fun without forgetting about the future. Send me a message if you’re ready to take action.
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