We need to cross the river. The river has its dangers, but we can’t stay here. We gather materials and fashion a raft. Perched atop, we paddle it to the other shore, where we have a decision to make.
This raft has served us so well: it helped us get to this side of the river. It is a valuable tool. Should we carry it on our backs, as we continue on land?
Just posing the question should reveal how silly it would be to drag along something we’re done with. No, of course we shouldn’t carry the raft with us.
But as humans we do this sort of thing all the time. We mistake the tool for its meaning, and we cling to what has worked in the past. We can’t drop our tools: they got us here! Where would we be without them? Who would we be without them?
That type of thinking gets people all tangled up. We’re not our choices, and we’re not our tools. (And none of this is for forever!)
In our shop, when we suggest a change of course, it may indicate that a new opportunity has become available, but sometimes it just means that an older strategy is no longer serving us. It has played itself out. And we don’t care what anybody else thinks about our strategies, either, but the meaning of our tools comes not from just having them—but from having used them.
The parable of the raft was one of the Buddha’s teachings. He implored his students to trust their own experiences and use his teachings only as they were helpful. Otherwise, drop them. No dogma, no tool for its own sake.
Trust that the proper strategy and tactics will become clear from the values and principles at the core of this adventure. No strategy, no tactic for its own sake.
Clients, when it’s time to make a change in your portfolios, when we learn something new about the world around us, we will strive to be as transparent as possible. We will share our thinking, how it has changed, and what led us to our conclusion.
When you’d like to talk about this, or anything else, write or call.