How the story of the greedy snake begun. As I was channel flicking at home on TV, I stopped flicking and started watching a film “Revolver” by Guy Ritchie for a few minutes. The scene, I saw was an Asian man reciting a poem about beauty. It was one of the last statements of the poem that got me which was quote “Greed’ is the only Snake you cannot charm”. This made me stop and think. How right and powerful this statement is in the financial world.
What does this word mean? Greed? To remind myself I had to look at dictionary entry again. “Greed (also called avarice) in psychology is an inordinate desire to acquire or possess more than one needs or deserves, especially with respect to material wealth.” There is no doubt I have been greedy in my life in different ways. Whether wanting more food, drink or money. Yes, I am a sinner! The sole purpose of playing in the stock market is to make more money than what I need. I now know when the greedy snake does peak its ugly head. That I have to be very aware of its existence and respect it when I see it!
The vision and payout from the greedy snake
In October 2008, I brought a £500 worth of Mwana Africa stocks for 3.5p each. In January 2010 I sold that same stock at 13p. I made £1500 within 15 months, on my original investment of £500. But during this process of selling that stock, my greed played a few games with me in my head.
The Devil (Greed) spoke these words: ”This stock has already earned me 300% gain, it will make me more money over the coming years. Leave the investment in!”
The Angel (Logic) spoke these words: “I should be happy with the money I have made 300% which most people wouldn’t make in a year. The 300% profit you see before you isn’t profit until you take it out of the market.”
The logic behind my reasoning of taking the profit
It’s very hard not to be greedy, your mind is your greatest enemy in making or losing money. The art here is not to control “Greed” but respect and be aware of its immense force in wealth building within the financial realms. The following points show the reasoning behind why I didn’t let greed take over my wealth and profits.
- The profit I made was 300% some fund managers don’t even make this in a year.
- Being greedy would have meant risking the 300% which could decline to 200% or 100% profit.
- The money is still paper until I sold the shares and took full advantage of the profits I had made.
- As this was a predominantly a gold mining company, if gold prices took a hit. My profit would suffer.
- Controlling my internal emotions to think I have cheated myself out of more profit.
- Weighing the risks of the company/sector and what the overall market was doing.
The conclusion and poem to the greedy snake
Here is a little poem I have adapted from the film “Revolver” to suit the financial world
Money and Greed
Money is a destructive angel.
How could anything that looks so good be so bad?
But there is no angel as destructive as greed.
In the end she gets them all.
They think they can handle her,
They think they can control her,
Greed is the only snake that cannot be charmed.
But greed of the snake can only charm you
And the mask it wears – material wealth