From the desk of Willie Delwiche.
I planned on writing about how fishing is a great metaphor for investing.
But I’ll have to tackle that idea another day.
Today, I’m thinking about fishing not as a metaphor for investing, but as a metaphor for not investing — actively stepping away to preserve financial capital. Perhaps even more importantly, stepping away to rebuild mental capital.
Whether it’s casting for trout in Oregon or trolling for salmon in Lake Michigan, getting away from our screens and electronic gadgets and connecting with the water is clarifying and restorative. It’s not just about the catch…
Beyond fishing, it’s important to cultivate places where we can get away from it all, even if for just a few moments. We need to find places where we can set aside the active wrestling with trends and troubles. Places where we can catch our breath, clarify our thoughts, and reinvigorate our souls.
For me, three places of deep familiarity and comfort come to mind.
- The goldfish pond in our backyard. We dug this out a few years ago and it’s become a favorite spot for everyone in the family. Listening to the fountain and watching the fish swim is part of my daily routine, especially in these summer months.
- A small no-wake lake in central Wisconsin. If I’m getting away for a weekend, this is where I head. Sometimes I fish, sometimes I just sit on the kayak watching whatever is flying overhead, moving along the shoreline, or swimming in the water.
- A mile-long sandy beach on an island in Lake Superior. For many years, this was our annual camping trip. We’d head North, take the ferry across to the island and camp in the state park. The combination of warm sunshine and frigid water (as well as wild blueberries) might not be Thoreau’s “marrow of life” but it’s not far off.
You probably have your own spot. Whether it’s for a few days, a few hours or even a few minutes at a time, the practice of knowing and visiting places of peace and clarity are good for our mental health.
Getting away — even just for a few minutes — helps immensely when it’s time to refocus on our financial health.