When it comes to investing, conventional wisdom says to hand your money over to a financial advisor and let them diversify your investments for you. Why think too much about where your money is going if you don’t have to? But there’s a problem with that mindset: your values matter and you should be investing in what you love.
Consistently pouring your life and efforts into the things you care about…
When you invest in a company, you’re backing a company and helping it succeed. And if you can’t feel good about the companies you’re giving your money to, they probably don’t deserve your money.
Think it doesn’t matter where your money goes in the grand scheme of things?
As much as 85% of the stock market is controlled by small investors.
Imagine the impact those small investors could have if they invested based on their passions and values, rather than the values (or just the blind greed) that drives financial institutions’ investment decisions.
You (and Your Money) Have a Voice
You can choose to invest in whatever you want and wherever your passions lie. And the great thing about it is that everyone values something different. Invest in stocks that you value.
For example, Warren Buffett chose to invest in Coca-Cola because drinking Coke made him happy, among other reasons.
Others might choose not to invest in Coca-Cola because they don’t believe in selling sugar to children.
Here’s a diagram of how to figure out what kinds of companies you should invest in:
Take Ownership of Your Money
Taking ownership of your money and investments means digging deeper so you understand the way the industries or companies you’re investing in actually operate.
That level of knowledge sets you up for success and gives you a leg up to make smart investment decisions.
Don’t invest in something just because your cousin said they’re “Sure to take off in the near future”, or because your coworker is talking up “The latest and greatest innovation in the tech world.”
Dig deeper to make sure you understand what you’re putting your money towards.
Invest With Your Values
Make sure you’re investing with your values.
If you’re not sure what your values are, it’s time to step back and do a little searching. In general, it might make sense not to invest in products or companies that make the world a worse place to live in, but that’s totally up to you.
Ask the hard questions about the operating practices of any company you’re considering investing in, and you’ll rest easy knowing you did everything you could to stand up for the things you believe in.
You’ll also understand the business and know that you’re putting your money into something wonderful.
Remember this, when you hand your investment funds over to a financial advisor, you’re giving them permission to invest your money as they see fit…
And they could easily choose to invest your money in companies you wouldn’t choose to support.
Take Charge of Your Investments
Instead of allowing someone else to invest for you, take charge of your investments and make sure that you’re putting your money where your passions and values lie.
Because at the end of the day, you’re better off knowing that you’ve used your resources as wisely as possible…
And that you’ve done your best with what you’ve got.
Want to learn how to match your values and the things you love with companies to invest in? This free download will show you how. It’s called the 3 Circles Exercise.
Phil Town is an investment advisor, hedge fund manager, 3x NY Times Best-Selling Author, ex-Grand Canyon river guide, and former Lieutenant in the US Army Special Forces. He and his wife, Melissa, share a passion for horses, polo, and eventing. Phil’s goal is to help you learn how to invest and achieve financial independence.