Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Financial Lessons from an Ugly Tree

Today's half-mile walk from the bus stop yielded some insights plucked from an ugly tree. Actually, the tree is no longer ugly; it has started to bloom. Here's what I have learned about money and life from that tree.

  • Make informed decisions: At first glance, this tree is straight-up ugly. For most of the year, the tree looks like ET's hands. The branches are short, gnarled appendages that appear distorted from pain and stunted growth. But I've discovered that at least once a year, these trees blossom with flowers of incredible beauty. The lesson: To an uninformed pedestrian or homeowner, these trees appear to be blights that should be chopped down. However, with knowledge and patience, I understand that those trees are garden treasures. I will apply that same principle to other areas of my life, including finance and long-term planning. Get educated, take the long-term view and be patient.

  • Learn new terms: This post would be better if I knew the name of that tree or if I knew more details about its blooming season and other botanical details. Likewise, other areas of my life would benefit from education. But too often, we invest in products, financial transactions, relationships and careers without conducting research. My new homework assignment: Find the name of that tree and research the history. Stop calling it: "That tree."

  • Document: I need to carry a camera. A visual image --documentation -- would also enhance the value of this post. I need better documentation in other areas of my life. The quality of my life will improve as I do a better job documenting records, receipts, investments and my children's growth spurts.


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Dave Lucas said...

Hey Sharon!

When I last had to buy a new cellphone, I got one with a built-in camera. Now I can take pictures whenever, and I use it for my work, which involves taking pictures at press conferences. I shoot 'em, email them to my work addy, and they're waiting for me when I return to my desk!

Love your blog, thanks for all the great advice!

Dave Lucas

Trevor @ Financial Nut said...

You are so right! Documenting things in life is so important.

Creative post. I really enjoyed it.

Jacquie said...

Please follow through and post a picture on your blog for the tree. I suspect that because of the time of year this would be a yellow or pink Tabebuia tree.


Nice blog. It is good to know that there are others in our fair city trying to live a fiscally responsible life.


banking deals said...

I currently own a house that I bought four years ago. I worked very hard to secure a down payment after years of saving every nickle and dime. I have been fiscally responsible and have never been late on my mortgage.