The BEST $400 I Ever Spent

I started investing when I was 17 years old. I put $400 into an account & lost most of it. It was the best $400 I have ever lost.

Like every teenage boy, I went on Google & looked up how to become rich. How to have the Lamborghini. How to get the big house. Okay, maybe every teenager doesn’t do that. But what I found was interesting. What I found made who I am today. What I found taught me the best lesson I have ever had with money.

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What was that $400 lesson?

When I got on Google, I found out about the stock market. I found out how I can turn a few hundred dollars into thousands, nearly overnight. I was SOLD. I was like “LET’S DO IT”! What was it?

Penny stock trading. I thought that was my ticket. I thought that was the way I was going to take my $400 & turn it into $10,000+. Well, I was wrong. I bought 4 stocks (which I didn’t even know what they did) & held them for a profit. That profit…. never came.

I ended up losing most of that $400. Did it suck? Yes. Was it worth it? Yes.

This is what I learned:

  1. Invest in what you know.

    1. I couldn’t tell you what those companies were. I had no idea what I was investing in. This is not the way to invest. If you can’t say what the business does, don’t invest in it.

  2. It is better to learn early.

    1. I am so glad I learned my lesson with $400. While at the time, $400 was a lot of money to me, it probably saved me thousands, if not tens of thousands of dollars. If I had tried that when I had more money, I would have lost more money. So I am super happy that $400 taught me a lesson.

  3. Making money quick in the stock market is hard to do.

    1. You always see the people who turn $1,000 into $10,000 on one trade. That is great. However, most of the time traders like that lose in the stock market. The best strategy is the one that is slow yet consistent. I have done that with my investing ever since learning that $400 lesson & it has equated to over $300,000 by age 25.

  4. Think long term

    1. I know I always say it, but it is so true. I thought I was going to turn that $400 into thousands overnight. Until I realized that is rarely ever going to happen. Remember the tortoise vs the hare story? Think long term & you will win.

I say all of this to remind you that we are all on this journey together. Sometimes things happen & they suck. It sucks to lose $400 when I was 17. BUT sometimes the greatest lessons come from it. Looking back, that $400 is the best lesson I have ever had with money.

A loss is only a loss if you don’t learn from it.

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My Buys This Week:

ETFs: $250 in VOO +

Tweet of the Week:

The mission is bigger than just me. I want everyone to win.

Thank you so much for reading & I will see you next week! Until then, keep buying assets & stacking those dividends. 🙂 

- Decade Investor

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