One of the things we learn early about investing is that no matter how good your investment philosophy, it’s inevitable that you will face some big down years down the line. In the investment journey there will be setbacks and losses, heartbreak and a lot of uncertainty. Howard Marks once said that there is no investment philosophy and no asset class with the birthright to superior returns.

When these difficulties arise it’s often our instinct to try to avoid and evade; to run and hide from them by selling at the bottom, for example. But when we try to escape suffering in investing, we only prolong and intensify the pain instead of taking some lessons from it. Instead we should to be gentle with our pain and work through the portfolio one by one to understand what is causing the difficulty. After all, experience is what you got when you didn’t get what you wanted...

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