Sunday, March 16, 2014

Five Habits of the Very Best Investors

by Paul Merriman - MarketWatch

Most investors spend most of their time and energy thinking about what they can get from their investments. That makes perfect sense. 

But there's more than that to investment success.

A few investors are lucky enough to be successful primarily because they were born into wealth and abundance. But the vast majority of us have to rely on hard work and … what else?

If you can put your finger on that elusive "what else" factor that leads to success, you can change your life — and your family's life — for the better. So what is it?

As I researched my 2011 book "Financial Fitness Forever," I posed exactly that question in a series of extended interviews with nine seasoned investment advisers I respect and admire.

One thing that emerged was deceptively simple. Aristotle said it this way: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence comes not from our actions but from our habits."

Again and again these nine advisers identified some key habits that seemed to be ingrained in the most successful people among the thousands of clients they have worked with. Pretty soon we realized that successful investors' most effective "secrets of success" were neither secret nor mysterious.