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12-DECEMBER 28-2023

Don't regift me!Today we started to treat the personal blog as a journal, a daily journey of activity.  Here I hope to record daily strides in self-improvement and self-awareness.  We’ll see how it goes!

Now here’s the rest of the news:

Censored: The worst Bank Bailout Charts
The biggest Fed scandal hiding in plain sight involves the trillions of dollars in bailout loans that the Fed has funneled to… [Read Here]

Why Property Taxes Are Evil
It is not surprising that property taxes are rising along with home prices.  Fortunately though, property taxes have so far not kept up with market prices… [Read Here]

December 28, 2022

A real messGood morning.
End of the year or not, investors and traders alike often look at what’s going well in the market and what isn’t.  This year marks the worst performance for investors since the 1930s.  That’s not just because of the drop in the stock market.  It’s also because of the drop in the bond market at the same time.
That may cause some investors to move away from a portfolio blended with both stocks and bonds.  The most traditional starting point for many investors is a portfolio split between 60 percent stocks and 40 percent bonds.  That portfolio may seem dead after this year, but some still see it as a winner over the next decade.
With the big jump in interest rates this year, that’s certainly possible.  Bond yields are coming up as inflation is coming down, and there could be solid returns in that space in real terms for the first time in over a decade.  Traders can potentially even buy bonds today near the tail end of an interest rate hike cycle, and swing big returns in the next few years when rates inevitably drop again.

Now here’s the rest of the news:

U.S. Housing Market Continues To Slow
The U.S. housing market continued to sag in October as the impact of higher mortgage rates and concerns over the economy rattled buyers and sellers.  Prices fell 0.5% from September, the fourth consecutive monthly decline for a seasonally adjusted… [Read Here]

Why Farmers Are Expecting More Food Shortages
Drought, supply chain shortages and the rising cost of doing business led to a difficult 2022 for American farmers, but 2023 could be even worse, a fourth-generation dairy farmer said. “I definitely think we have a food security threat and I believe…” [Read Here]

December 28, 2021

You Shouldn't HaveGood morning.
While news about the Omicron variant has been mixed, the stock market has regained traction and is back to nearly all-time highs just in time to close out the year.  Reports are coming in that this variant is much more mild than prior versions, and that many who get it are asymptomatic.
That’s all good news for returning to a pre-pandemic normal with indoor gatherings, concerts, and other benefits of travel and tourism.  However, there are still some concerns lingering, such as potential worker vaccine mandates and increased scrutiny for domestic travel.  With the stock market shrugging off this fear, we’re currently at a fork in the road, but one that points towards a continued return to a fully open economy.

Now here’s the rest of the news:

Experts Run The Numbers On Inflation And Social Security, Find This Shocker
If you receive Social Security benefits, you’ll get a significant raise in 2022.  The 5.9% cost-of-living adjustment in your Social Security benefits in 2022 is the biggest jump since 1982, when benefits increased by 7.4%… [Read Here]

December 28, 2020

How Safe is SafeGood morning.
We’re all looking forward to 2020’s end.  It’s in sight.  While the day-to-day grind may not be that different right away, the end of the calendar year can make a huge difference to your wealth.
As the last week of the year kicks off, it’s your last chance to sell some positions and book a loss.  By doing so, you offset gains and lower your overall tax payment.  This week marks the last time to talk with your accountant or broker (if you have one), and make sure you take advantage of any losing positions in your portfolio to lower your taxes.

Now here’s the rest of the news:


December 28, 2019

Busy vs Productive

What was your answer the last time someone asked you, “How have you been doing?”  If you said, “Busy,” you’re certainly not alone.  We hear it more often than not, and to be perfectly honest, we often feel the same way.  But here’s the deal: There’s a tremendous difference between being busy and being productive.  Even more, there’s a big difference between productivity and focused productivity.

As the quote above suggests, being busy and productive without clarity about your priorities and a focus on what’s most important is useless.  Heck, you could argue that it’s worse than useless; it’s potentially harmful and damaging.  So, how can you avoid the “productivity trap”?  Here are a few ideas:

  • Make a “not-to-do” list.  Write down all of the things you’re currently doing that aren’t worth the time and effort you’re spending on them.  Delegate them, if possible, or…
  • Let go of the rest.  Focus on the essential items, and if something is not important and not urgent, get rid of it.  If you need help with this, check out Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism.
  • Plan ahead.  Once you know what you will and won’t do, prioritize your to-do list.  Some people do this weekly, but most people do it daily, mapping out their agenda for the next day the night before.
  • Do a daily recap.  While you’re doing your nightly lineup for the following day, do a daily recap to see how you did.  What went well?  Where can you improve?
  • Clear the clutter.  Clutter on your desk, your office, your inbox, etc., can be very distracting.  Make sure you set aside time weekly to tidy things up.  This not only helps keep things clean, it also helps you from getting sidetracked with spontaneous house cleaning.
  • Put one foot in front of the other.  Sometimes the most daunting step is the first one.  But rather than paralysis by analysis, just take one step — in any direction.
  • Batch similar tasks together.  When you’re putting together your daily lineup card, batch similar tasks together whenever possible.  Set aside dedicated time for emails, phone calls, projects, meetings, etc., rather than sporadically spacing them out.  Every time you change tasks, there’s an opportunity cost; that’s right, we’re suggesting that you don’t multitask.
  • Set a timer.  If you have trouble being disciplined with your time, use a timer.  This is an incredibly useful tool for most people.  It helps create a sense of urgency, it can alleviate feelings of being overwhelmed, and it creates a light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak.
  • Schedule mini-workouts.  Physical activity boosts energy levels, helps manage hunger and blood sugar levels, improves cognitive function, and boosts productivity.  Schedule 5- to 10-minute micro workouts during your work day.
  • Improve your communication.  If you’re too wordy, you can be leaky valuable time and creating confusion.  Keep things as simple as possible and focus on answering questions — not creating new ones.

Here’s Darren Hardy to recap; “Are You Playing To Win… Or To Not Lose?”

When you combine productivity with focus, well  that’s where the magic happens.  Get-rrrr Done … 😉

Come From Aways, Do You?

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