The legendary Amrita Pritam stares down at me from a frame of a snippet of her popular poem ‘Main tenu phir milangi’, which hangs on my wall. This, just when I am settling in to read perhaps what can come closest to the biography of the great investor, the Oracle of Omaha and institution Warren Buffett himself, penned by Alice Schroeder, namely The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life.
In the book, at one place, he says that intensity is the price of excellence. He talks about the significance of compounding too, when he says, “On me personally what has been the most important was to understand the value of time. What you do when you are young (and as you use time over your life) can have an exponential effect so that if you are thinking about it, you can really have powerful results later, if you want to. Because, my friend, Time is the friend of the wonderful business and the enemy of the mediocre.”
That reminded me of one of Pritam's lines poetically describing intensity, time, and additionally, the forte of her expression, love. “Umr ke kagaz pe tere ishq ne angootha laga diya, hisab kaun chukayega?” And much to my surprise, she also indicates towards, or so I think, about financial independence in her poem, Mera Pata, where she tells everyone to find her wherever there is a vision and hope of spiritedness and freedom (Jahan bhi Aazad Rooh ki jhalak pade, samajhna vahi mera ghar hai).While Buffett, synonymous with the world of investing, as investors around the world hanging on to his every word, Pritam, too, has a rich, deep and insightful treasure trove to derive financial wisdom from, along with, of course, the intricacies of love and women empowerment. Read on:
Who aspires for a frugal, hand-to-mouth existence? No one, right? Spending all your income for your desires and wants means you’re axing the needs of your future self. A major portion of your income should be allocated for savings and particularly, investments in stocks and mutual funds, which further generate handsome returns for you in the long term. Because, If you don't find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die. Buffett’s words, not mine! Spend reasonably, save significantly, and you have your key to financial success.Mera Shehar ek lambi behas ki tarah hai
Market crashes and lows are not as much a question of if, as they are of when. They are certain, inevitable, and impossible to avoid. Navigating through the haphazard, disarrayed shehar can be discomforting, but that’s exactly how the state of affairs is, and there's no changing that!
Don't feel disheartened when your portfolio is in red, because sooner or later, the market will come roaring back, swaddling your investments in green. Linearity is not the market’s favourite movement, and your expectations from it must not follow this course, as well. But what you can do best, as Buffett elaborates, is to prepare for it adequately. Because, “predicting the rain doesn’t count, building the ark does”. So make sure your ark is all prepped up, with stable assets like debt instruments and gold cushioning your volatile equity returns!Mohabbat ki kachchi Deewar
Think you’ve got the perfect portfolio? Think again! Because even the investing superstar Buffett is prone to mistakes and losses. But, as he puts it, “After 25 years of buying and supervising a great variety of businesses, Charlie and I have not learned how to solve difficult business problems. What we have learned is to avoid them." And how? By regular assessment and evaluation of your portfolio and adapting to the market trends to make the most of them! The oracle further explains,” Keep things simple and don't swing for the fences. When promised quick profits, respond with a quick "no." That temptation to earn some quick bucks might punch a hole through your investments!I stare back at Pritam, and then at the book next to me. Buffett, as always, is smiling from the cover, while, I feel observed for the good, like Pritam pens down, “Tere canvas par utarkar, ek rahasyamayi lakeer banke, khamosh tenu takti rahungi”.