Today I am grateful for balance. There are times when work is stressful or unfulfilling — the days drag by, or the tasks ahead seem overwhelming. Often, during those times, though, I look forward to activities on the evenings and weekends. Dancing, singing, playing games and seeing my friends and family makes me happy and reminds me that there’s so much to do and enjoy in life. But there are also times when my nights are empty — illness or injury prevents me from going out as much, or I feel disconnected from people I’ve been close to. Left to my own devices I’m liable to feel lonely and sad or escape into hours of fiction reading. If work were at a low point, my life would be pathetic indeed, but instead I find that work not only distracts me from brooding but stimulates me and gives me a sense of accomplishment when I solve a tricky problem or work well with my team mates. The analogy that just jumped to mind is asset allocation: a portfolio with diverse investments usually provides less risk and more stable performance, so that even if one particular stock or fund drops steeply, the overall worth of your investments won’t be dragged down with it. Of course, there are still times when a whole class of assets (or even the whole market) performs poorly and nothing seems to be going right. Even then, the investing analogy holds pretty well — if your focus is on long-term growth rather than the daily ups and downs, don’t panic and withdraw everything, but stick it out and trust that eventually things will turn upward again.

Life is like a … financial portfolio? Somehow it doesn’t have the same ring.

Comments 3

  1. Graham wrote:

    And, of course, there are times when everything goes up, too. It does have to keep balanced, after all.

    Ring or not, it’s a fine analogy. Everything in the world has ups and downs and you can’t control that. But you can control how you balance your own life, and the attitude you take towards it.

    Glad to hear you still remember those little investing lessons, too. :-) *hugs*

    Posted 17 Nov 2009 at 09:04
  2. Char wrote:


    Posted 17 Nov 2009 at 22:16
  3. Jason Morrison wrote:

    Thanks for saying “solve a tricky problem or work well with my team mates” instead of the more accurate “fix all the bugs in Jason’s code” :)

    Posted 17 Nov 2009 at 23:14

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