Thorntons is up 42% to 145p today on news that Ferroro bid for the company (Motley Fool: http://is.gd/E6KEty). I had sold out in May (http://is.gd/X8SH92) at 92p. I made a nice profit on the trade, but still, it’s always galling to see that I could have made a lot more.
I had also sold FLYB (Flybe) prematurely, before its big runup.
Too little patience! By nature, I do not have an addictive personality. I consider that I have one of the least addicitive personality of all the people I know. There’s no objective way of measuring that, of course.
However, all this focussing on money and shares has taken its toll. There’s been too much checking, too much andreniline, too many trades.
That’s why, towards the end of last month, I decided that I really needed to step back from the whole process.
I do have share alerts for my portfolio, which would allow me to make appropriate decisions should the need arise. But what I’ve been doing is now try to trade once a month, and stop reading too much. Don’t look at what the Footsie is doing. My new strategy is to perform a comb on Stockopedia for highly ranked shares, and choose something that looks good. Old stuff gets ejected.
I have not been able to stay away from portfolio-checking as much as I would like. I am in the process of improving my portfolio application, so it inevitably means that I need to run programs that display performance and gains/losses.
However, I find that by changing the stimuli, you do affect your behaviour. As the Buddha says insightfully in Majjhima Nikaya 10: “Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with his thinking and pondering, that becomes the inclination of his awareness”. I have noticed that when I stop pursuing investing activities, and go and do something else with my life, the perpetual desire to find out what’s going on does subside.
Anyway, I’m far from proving that I’ve “conquered” my addiction. As ever, we shall see.
It’s interesting, but I’ve spoken to a few lads who work on the oil fields periodically. Alcohol is of course forbidden on oil rigs. They are not averse to a few beers, but they say that when they are on the rigs, they don’t even think about beer. I guess it varies with personality types.