The importance of patience when investing

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Tamzin Nel | Portfolio Manager | Anchor Capital | mail me |


There is no such thing as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. A hurried mind is an addled mind; it cannot see clearly or hear precisely; it sees what it wants to see, or hears what it is afraid to hear, and misses much. A knight makes time his ally.

There is a moment for action, and with a clear mind that moment is obvious.– Ethan Hawke, Rules for a Knight

This advice is timeless and was first penned by Sir Thomas Lemuel Hawke of Cornwall in 1483. He wished to pass along to his 4 children a compass for their life’s journey and wrote them a letter which was later adapted and reconstructed by Ethan Hawke of Dead Poets Society fame. The result is a series of ruminations on solitude, humility, forgiveness, honesty, courage, grace, pride, and patience. It is a profoundly simple read.

Warren Buffet, who needs no introduction, has said that “investing is simple but not easy”, however, putting into practice the simplicity of plain math and language is another story. For many, this is because of the psychological pitfall of not having the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, problems, or suffering, without becoming annoyed or anxious. This is the definition of patience.

If you google ‘patience in investing’, more than 13,200 results come up and the mathematical and real-world examples of the power of compounding are easily searchable. I would like to provide some practical insight and practices for understanding our inclinations to be impatient and how we can make a conscious effort to work around them as investing is not about timing the markets, but time in the markets.

One of the most underused investing skills has nothing to do with the ability to value equities or bonds, analysing financial statements or economies but rather in the diligent process of


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Read the full article by Tamzin Nel, Portfolio Manager, Anchor Capitalas well as a host of other topical management articles written by professionals, consultants and academics in the February/March 2022 edition of BusinessBrief.


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