I’ve decided to stop writing Kaizen Investor. After more than 100 posts, and to readers of this blog, this may come as a bit of a surprise. Why?
The objective of starting KI was always as a way to build experience and become a better investor. The way I’ve done this has been primarily through documenting what I’m learning on my journey as an investor.
Keeping A Journal
While writing can be a good way to process thoughts and internalize lessons, it takes much more time to write a blog that’s worthy of your time, dear reader.
Documenting thoughts on investment process or rationale for any specific investment situation can usually by recorded in a few key bullet points with note form explanation (I usually record these in a spreadsheet).
This helps my thought processes and learning of lessons. It’s also useful to have a record to refer back to over time to remind yourself what you’ve learnt. It’s an incredibly valuable process as an investor.
However, taking such simple note form and translating this into meaningful, interesting and engaging blog posts takes considerably longer. It’s no longer enough just to bash out ideas as they come into your head and hit “publish.”
Investor or Blogger?
A good post requires lots of research in advance, good writing and editing, and making sure the content is novel and interesting. It also has to speak to the reader on some emotional level.
The other side of the coin is opportunity cost. Everyone’s time is finite: I’ve had to make a choice.
Should I spend time on becoming a better blogger and writer – someone who specializes in conveying ideas?
Or should I spend the same limited time focusing on researching ideas, studying the masters and over time becoming a better investor?
For me, as much as I’ve enjoyed writing KI, the latter is a clear winner. While there is some cross-over the two are not the same thing.
The Best Bloggers Are Master Writers
When researching the most popular and well-read value investing blogs out there, virtually none of them were written by master investors. Here’s one list I came across.
Clearly, they have an undoubted and passionate interest in investing, yet the focus seems to be more about educating others and building a following. Indeed, one is even billed as the new “Ben Graham.”
Don’t get me wrong – some of these blogs are very interesting, well written by extremely capable authors, thought provoking and offer wonderful educational insights. In a word, excellent.
But for me, undertaking such an exercise would detract from the goal of becoming a better investor.
As a corollary, when considering master investors, virtually none of them write an investment blog. Sure, as they become popular and develop a greater following, more people start to read their investment reports. But it’s not the same thing.
This post about Warren Buffett’s biggest secret sums it up nicely. You need insane focus.
Will I write about investing again? Yes, almost certainly. While it may be on a blog type platform, the look and feel will be different.
Do Less To Achieve More
Much of my thinking has been influenced by an excellent book I’ve just read – Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit Of Less by Greg McKeown.
The main tenet of the book is to simplify your life and achieve more by doing less. We all undertake many activities, sometimes too many. The trick is to identify the few things that matter, and avoid the many other activities which seem important but are not critical.
One of the quotes I particularly liked is:
“Jim Collins, the author of the business classic Good To Great, was once told by Peter Drucker that he could either build a great company or great ideas but not both. Jim chose ideas.”
For me, this equates to: you can either build a great investment blog or be a great investor, but not both.
And by great investor, I don’t mean someone who becomes a famous investment manager. I’m talking about achieving investment mastery (a lifetime in the making). Or as quoted in the book:
“To follow, without halt, one aim: There is the secret to success” – Anna Pavlova, Russian Ballet Dancer
Resources and Thank-You
For any readers who want to use the resources or articles on this blog, they will stay up for now. These include articles on financial freedom, saving and Growth At Reasonable Price investing. And feel free to check out the Archives.
Finally, a deep thank-you to the readers of this blog for your interest and support. You rock.