Retirement Planning - Staying The Course Through Difficult Times


One of the main reasons people are apprehensive about investing in the stock market is fluctuating stock returns.  The stock market can be an intimidating thing.  Unpredictable high's and lows that seem to be out of our control.

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Nobody wants to see their investment portfolio diminish in value.  The reality is stocks go both up and down.  Since we as investors cannot control the fluctuating nature of the stock market, the best we can do is understand it better so we can invest more wisely.  From new investors to seasoned pro's, understanding these ups and downs is crucial to a successful portfolio and disciplined investing.

Here are a few methods to help you stick-it-out during turbulent investment times.

Check in with your emotions

In any time of uncertainty, we can become emotional and make impulsive and irrational decisions.  Too often we can get caught up in the media hype surrounding market fluctuations and this might cause us to panic and rush to buy or sell more carelessly than we would if we weren't caught up in the hype.  Remember to look at the bigger picture and remember your long-term goals. Have faith and confidence in the strategy you and your Financial Planner agreed upon, and remember fluctuations are in the nature of the stock-market.  If you are still uncertain, always get the opinion of your Financial Planner before acting.  One way to minimise the emotional impact of investing is to review your investment values at regular scheduled times (i.e quarterly). This lessens the urge to react in response to the daily market swings.

Remember your investment portfolio is long-term

If your goal is to fund your retirement from your investment portfolio, remember this is a long-term goal.  Just as you can get caught up in the panic of a market low, you can just as easily get caught up in the hype of a high.  If your investment goals are long-term, chances are you have enough time up your sleeve to recover from any short term losses you might wear from a drop in the stock market.

Talk to your Financial Planner

You wouldn't go on an Everest trek without a guide, just like you wouldn't invest without the help of someone to navigate the complexities of the stock market for you.  Your Financial Planner can be an educated figure and a level head during market fluctuations.  The right Financial Planner will provide you with the reassurance and knowledge you need to have confidence in your portfolio.  Check in with them if you are ever uncertain about what actions you should be taking to achieve your long-term goals.

Look at the bigger picture

Remember the stock market has been around for hundreds of years, and has been through a number of recessions, which they have eventually recovered from.  Having a more long-term perspective reveals how natural it is for peaks and troughs to occur in the market.  Realising this historical perspective can relax the panic you may experience around the lows, and keep you on the path to reach your long-term financial goals.


If you wish to speak to a Financial Advisor about your investment portfolio or retirement planning,