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Optimism lies at the core of success

The Examiner

Most people would seem to be eagerly anticipating the end of 2020. Many of us have lost beloved family members or friends to the virus. Perhaps a billion or more have had their financial health severely damaged or ruined. Experts called for the initial economic shutdown in late winter in order to flatten the curve. But as with many issues, even if an idea is ineffective, the recourse becomes one of doubling down on the idea for lack of one better.

Ron Finke

As with many current issues, I seriously doubt if we will be able to reach agreement about best health practices even after this viral pandemic has passed. Division is the catchphrase today regardless of one’s sentiments or worldview. Even with vaccines created in miraculously short times, some promise that this will continue for years to come.

None of this is really new. Pandemics through the millennia have killed millions, as have wars, famines, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions – stuff happens!

Is all lost therefore? Are we incapable of planning a way forward or moving toward a better situation for ourselves and our families?

My answer is still No. There are always reasons for hope. The important questions concerning the future are not what occurs but how one thinks and what one does in response.

Here are a few quotations of wisdom that we may apply. In the 16th century, William Shakespeare declares from the mouth of Cassius, “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings.”

A century ago, Henry Ford opined, “Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.”

There are hundreds of quotes like these in sources such as www.brainyquotes.com that refer to our individual ability and responsibility for our own fates. This is not to deny that everything we ever have or will have including our own personality, will, and experience has been provided for us and to us.

As we look forward to 2021 whether it is in regard to our finances, our health, our relationships with family and others – we make the most difference in our lives by the desires we hold and the decisions we make day by day. My favorite question will always be, What is the next right thing to do?

May God bless you as you progress!

Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The advice is general in nature and not intended for specific situations.            

Ron Finke is president of Stewardship Capital in Independence. He is a registered investment adviser. Reach him at rcfinke@stewcap.com.