Thirty seven year old Kobe Bryant, retired L.A. Lakers basketball player, recently penned a letter
to his 17 year old self. As most teenagers and even adults have a very limited attention span, it was short and to the point.
He effortlessly used a few simple paragraphs to touch upon important lessons that his present day self only wished younger Kobe knew. This letter sparked inspiration and got us thinking about what we would pass along to our once naive selves. If you could have written a knowledgeable letter to your younger self, what would it say and in particular what lesson involving your finances would you stress the most?!?
We wish we could take a few lessons or influential experiences and hand deliver those to the freshly minted college graduates we once were. It’s not too late to learn from mistakes during one’s investment tenure, and certainly not too late for us to share that information. There are so many words of wisdom to share; the first that comes to mind is saving for the future. Even if that future is a parking ticket, a new tire, or a new air conditioning unit you didn’t expect to have to pay for. There is a staggering statistic that 47% of Americans cannot come up with $400 in an emergency on their own. Imagine instead if you were in the 53% that was one step ahead of the sheriff. You would have planned ahead and avoided the panic.
Kobe stressed that “setting things up right from the beginning will avoid a ton of tears and heartache, some of which remains to this day”. Although the job title or paycheck Kobe has is not shared by your average Joe, that doesn’t mean we can’t learn from his advice. His struggles came from the belief that due to his status he should financially take care of his friends and family. Unfortunately for Kobe, this caused personal angst over the past twenty years. Our hope is those who read this start thinking of the lessons they wished they knew back then, and implement them moving forward or at least share whatever was learned.
This is a topic we find important and interesting. We expect in future posts to delve deeper into what various generations wish they had known at an earlier age to pass down to newer generations.