The Giants' Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots offers these lessons:
- Don't discount slow starts: The Giants had an 0-2 start to the current season. The Lesson: Even if our retirement planning is off to a slow start and even if we fall into a financial pit, we can still have a winning season.
- Expect turbulence: Eli Manning has had a volatile four-year career. "There have been a lot of highs and a lot of lows, but I never lost faith in myself," Manning said during a post-game interview.
- Don't believe the hype: According to one post-game interview, the New England Pats were already planning post-game victory parties. One Giant team member even reported that he was invited to a New England victory party. Likewise, in finance, it's easy to be taken in by the stellar reputation of an investment adviser or mutual fund. But we should trust our own instincts.
- Keep battling until the last second: The final outcome of the game was really determined in the closing seconds of the game. The Lesson: It's never too late to win or lose a game. Fortunes and careers can be dramatically altered in a short period.
- Ideal conditions are not a requirement: I've often delayed projects, savings plans or other endeavors until "the time is right." I've waited for the perfect moment or a "window of opportunity" to get started on new campaigns or creative projects. But sometimes, we have to create our own windows, doors and opportunities. Consider the Giants' post-season run. They repeatedly won on the road to opponents who were favored to win. You don't need home field advantage to win the top prize.