What Sonic the Hedgehog Teaches Doctors About Investing

Last month I got the best Christmas present ever -- Xbox 360.
Yes, I'm almost 9 years behind the times. Seems like everyone including 5 year olds already have it. The last game system I played was an Atari way long ago.
Wow, have graphics changed!
Anyway I bought a game called Sonic All Stars Racing, and boy was it fun.
I was driving, flying, motorboating, sliding, turboboosting, and drifting. Definitely better than the Sonic game my roommates played in med school in the 90s.
Problem was that out of the 10 competing racers, I've always come in last place. Apparently my fine motor skills just aren't up to par.
Except last night....well almost.
See I was determined that I've got to get out of last place.
So I fired up the game system, got myself ready (I've got a stance when I play now...I even stretched before I started playing kind of like before going to the gym), hit the start button, and I was off.
This time it was different.
I made all the right moves.
Drifted and slid in the right directions.
And by the last lap of the race I was in first place!
I headed toward the finish line. I could see it coming up in the distance.
I had hallucinations of my virtual trophy.
And then...
Someone shoots me with a turtle shell and knocks me off the track.
End result?
I went from first to worst all in a matter of seconds.
Boy was I mad.
I thought I had made all the right moves only to get the same result I always got.

I had no idea that one mistake could wipe me out so quickly.

This reminds me of a mistake so many physicians make with their finances and investments.

If you've been managing your own investment portfolio, you might think you know everything and you might think you've done everything right, and then suddenly an event happens that destroys your confidence...and maybe even your finances.

"Gee I didn't think that would happen" is your response.

You then promptly go right back to your bad investing habits and attribute your failure to just bad luck.

The successful do-it-yourself physician investors have a plan and understand the consequences of their financial decisions. That's a teeny tiny portion of physicians out there.

Yes, we all like to think we're good at this, but if that were the case, then why do so many physicians have to work full time when they're 60 years old?

Well, I'm going to let you in on a secret. I've got a new solution for you that I'll be launching soon. More details to come soon.

Even if you've hired a financial advisor, has he actually sat down with you and explained how he designed your investment portfolio, what the risks are and aren't, the steps you need to take to go get where you want to go, and how you can make work optional?

Has he explained  how certain events if they were to happen can derail your plan (if you even have a plan to begin with)?

Or is he just selling you products, flinging useless economic drivel at your face, dazzling you with fancy terminology which he probably doesn't understand either, and taking you to high end restaurants?

And are you believing the hype?

Only to realize that you might just be playing a game rather than actually having a real plan?

A good advisor will be your financial trainer and coach.

Someone who will whip you into shape.

Someone who will sit down with you and formulate a plan.

Someone who will explain the risks involved and not sugarcoat the results.

Someone who walks in your shoes and understands what you're going through.

If that's what you're looking for, then it's time to check this out:

We're almost 2 weeks into the new year. What are you waiting for?

Or go back and be Sonic. I just hope the next turtle shell that's thrown your way doesn't knock you off your financial track again.
Talk to you again soon.

Setu Mazumdar, MD, CFP®