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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Five Rules for Investing In Your Friendships

Tax season is upon us and while we’re all trying to maximize our finances, pay off our holiday debts and figure out how to ask for our next raise– we would be remiss if we didn’t apply some of the same intention toward our friendships.
1. Diversify to Control Risk. No matter how good the stock is, you never want it all in one place. You may have a BFF, but life changes and shifts the dynamics between even the best of friends. Make sure you have other friendships fostered before you need them.
2. Buy in Thoughtfully. Friendship takes a lot of energy & time to build the familiarity required to foster acceptance, safety and intimacy. The most mature thing to do is to only give a little, make sure you see the value returned, before giving a little more, etc. Do your homework in connecting with different people and intentionally channeling time to those where you can see your deposits are being appreciated and held carefully.
3. Expect Corrections Instead of Fearing Them. The market has upswings and downswings– we should prepare for both, not act shocked when the market corrects itself. It always does. True in friendships too. Even the closest of friends have misunderstandings, jealousy and judgements. It doesn’t necessarily mean they aren’t good friends, rather it just means we’re all imperfect and should come to expect that and not be shocked by it.
4. Don’t Give Up on Value. Too often people give up on companies or stock based on how they are performing now, instead of looking at their long-term value. Similarly, don’t drop or add friends based only on current performance. Companies with clean balance sheets, the ability to make acquisitions, good leadership and upcoming new products are way more of an asset in the long term than simply based on current market value.
5. Remember where your Pay-Off Comes From. In stocks it is in the selling that you make your millions. In friendship, it is in the enjoying. Be sure to spend the time and energy laughing and being together that will make all the withdrawals and deposits worth it!
About the Author: Shasta Nelson, is the founder of and an expert of women’s friendships. connects women for offline friendships in their local areas.

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