This Fourth of July, Take a Hike

This Fourth of July, consider taking a hike.

Recently, I had the opportunity to take a hike in the Colorado mountains with some absolutely brilliant investment managers. That morning, by coincidence, one of their investment decisions would turn out well—in a very short period of time—and they were about to be quite happy about that.

The trail, because of the massive snow melt, was more of a river that we jumped, lumbered and scampered on the way up. On the way down, we were wet, less careful and laughing all the way. Money managers are not mountaineers, but city folk in khakis and sneakers who are a little out of place. They are competitive. One investment manager raced past the other and joked, “I have to beat you at something!”

During the journey, I asked one of the money manager questions he had not heard before, and he was flattered to answer. I want to know about his parents, where he came from, who he cares about. Why, on earth, does it matter? Because something drives him to work so hard—I want to know what it is. I found it out and we grew closer together.

When we returned to our car and they learned how well they had done, that morning, with their investment, they laughed with joy. I laughed then about their giddiness. One of the things I’ve learned, over the years, is to tune out the news, both good and bad, of our investments. Yes, I keep our investments on my cell phone…oh my, the irony!

On the hike, you see, none of us could get to the information. None of us knew the good news. We discussed, at some length, their beliefs about investment markets. But quickly, the higher we walked and the further away from the city we went, the more important the important stuff became: relationships, goals, values. If I can trust somebody there—at that level—then I have made a huge step forward in entrusting your money with them as well.

All in all, we had a wonderful time together. My new friend gave me a great gift. He said, “thank you for caring.”

Here is another article, more thoughtful and erudite, about the power of a hike. Take one!

I hope you have an amazing experience this Fourth of July and you take a minute to share your story with one of us!

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