Nico Appel

personal blog

Last seen in: Berlin, Germany
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Longterm strategies

I’m recently getting the feeling that one of the more important things I came to understand or accept over the last couple of years is the value and leverage of ‘longterm’.
Ray Dalio calls it “second- and third-order consequences”:

…it seems to be in our nature to overly focus on short-term gratification rather than long-term satisfaction—on first-order rather than second- or third-order consequences—Ray Dalio “Principles

I hear(ed) this over and over again. But hearing about it doesn’t really make it easier, does it?

So what helped? Experience, mostly. And good people.
Take away: The more experience I get the more I wish to get smart about these things faster than I grow old.

I could list endless examples of where longterm thinking can help immensely, but here’s just a small sample:

The dark side

Here’s the dark side of this (it isn’t really, but it’s one way to look at this) and it comes in three stages:

  1. My experience is that, at first, it’s somewhat difficult to do the right/longterm thing. But let’s say you mangage to and stay with.
  2. You find yourself making seemingly none to minimal progress which is kind of a side effect of most longterm strategies. >> Once you know this, it gets easier to not worry, but it’s still a matter of faith in a way.
  3. This is where it gets good and bad at the same time. Longterm starts ‘paying of’. You get the results you wished for.
    And the dark side is this: Others who haven’t commited to longterm, struggle or fail. It’s almost like karma and it can feel quite ugly to see others (friends) suffer from the consequences, if you actually give a damn.

Well, everyone is responsible for their own decisions as well as their emotional state. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be compassionate.
I’m trying to observe and learn from successes and failures alike. Like Max‘s Dad said:

No one is useless as long as he can be used as a bad example.Hartmut Lielje

Related:

If Warren Buffett says he buys it, why shouldn’t I?