For a lot of people right now, the economy sucks. But for some, it’s a time of great opportunity. And which side of that fence you’re on depends a lot on how you understand the fundamentals.
Let’s get all metaphoric and try to sort it out …
The Lion vs. The Gazelle
So we take a lion and a gazelle and put them in a big fenced-in park. And we wait. One of two things will happen … either the lion eats the gazelle or the lion starves to death.
Those are the ONLY two options. That’s the brutal truth, and at the end of the day that’s just a fundamental truth of economics. Someone always wins and someone else always loses. The lion and gazelle can not live in harmony and go skipping off into the sunset together. This is survival.
But what if we tweak the rules of the game?
Well, we can give the lion an advantage by making sure there’s lots of tall grass to sneak around in. But that’s unfair to the gazelle, so to help level the playing field, we’ll paint the lion red. But maybe that’s too much in favour of the gazelle, so let’s make a rule that says the wind only blows in one direction. That way the wind can’t suddenly turn and give away the lion’s position when it’s sneaking up through the grass.
And you know what … we can make rule after rule after rule to try and level the playing field in order to make it as equal as possible. And all that does is make the game last longer.
There are still only two possible outcomes. Gazelle or lion. No matter what else happens. And knowing that is extremely powerful.
So how does this apply to you? Your investing, your business? Well it gives you two rules to live by:
- Know your advantages and disadvantages. If you don’t understand the game, if you can’t find enough strategic advantages on the field, find another game to play.
- Always live to play another day. If things start going bad; if the wind changes direction or you suddenly find yourself painted red … cut your losses and get out of the game.
Whether you see the economy as good or bad, it’s still all about how you CHOOSE the games you play. Don’t waste your time blaming others for cheating or arguing about an unlevel playing field. Get out of the games you can’t win and find the ones you can.
Because there’s always a sweet scent in the winds of change.
And it just might be your dinner.