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A surprising activity could make you a much better investor


From The Interloper:

I know I’m not stupid. But even though I was always among the three brightest kids in class, I have a good friend who, right brain or left brain, is quicker than me in every way. He, in turn, tells a story about a visiting professor who was writing the answer to a question on a blackboard and was asked a second question, after which he wrote the answer to that with his left hand, while finishing the answer to the first with his right. My buddy’s response was, “Well, I’m smart, but I’m nowhere near that gifted.”

The investing lesson here was that if I was just going to think linearly, along the same path as everyone else, someone with significantly higher brain horsepower was going to get there first, and potentially earlier enough to be filling my bid to take profits.

But the fact that my family history involved frequent displacement early on turned out to be a lucky break – the “making new friends” lag time was spent reading, fiction, to the point where the habit became permanently ingrained. Unwittingly, I was learning lessons in empathy that would make me a much better investor…

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