The last few years have seen a big increase in the popularity of mindfulness.
Mindfulness is a state of mind created by focusing on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting our feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.
Essentially, it’s a training in paying attention.
George explains, “You’re paying attention, in a way, to who you are. You’re paying attention to these moments where you feel wonderful, these moments where you feel frustrated, these moments where you feel fearful or anxious or guilty or shameful, which we all have as human beings”.
The primary practice that is taught in mindfulness is to really focus on the present moment, which readers will know is impossible to do because it keeps disappearing on you.
But that makes you much quicker in the moment, much clearer in the moment, much more capable at a moment’s notice to focus and be present, so you’re much more alert.
One of the mistakes investors commonly make is they allow their emotions to get the better of them. By making you more aware of your emotions, mindfulness can help you control them.
The most common pattern in investing is not to buy low and sell high.
We all buy high, when everybody’s enthusiastic about something, and then we sell low when everybody’s pessimistic about something.
What mindfulness does is it creates more patience, more equanimity, more quietness, less reactivity.
So, you’re more able to be here, be present.
George recommends if you aren’t already to start participating in mindfulness, to get a practice going. And if you are, try to double your practice time.
He also recommends finding an adviser who’s trustworthy. “They have listening skills inside of them and they’ll help settle you down, so you don’t make foolish mistakes”.
Mindfulness isn’t for everyone. And although it looks easy, it isn’t. It requires plenty of practice. But if you invest the time required to learn it, you won’t regret it.