This past week I was blessed and fortunate to make a fly-in fishing trip with some of my family. My grandfather (who's 87), cousin, uncle and his wife, parent's, brother and his son, my oldest son and myself made our way to Canada ready for a fun trip. Maybe the last time my grandpa get's to make this trek that he's done so many times. We made a 10 hour drive and packed the plane excited for a great adventure.
As we boarded the small aircraft (on pontoons no less) with a young pilot in his '20's my mind started to run.....What am I doing? Are we going to make it? What if they forget us out there in the middle of nowhere? Is this guy qualified to fly this thing? Then we took off and you could feel every bit of wind like we were a sailboat on a large lake with whitecaps. Many bumps and turns along the way.....my mind expecting the worst but hoping for the best. I ran through my head of what to do if we crash. Life preserver...check. Emergency exit...check. Knife to cut people out of their seatbelts....need to locate.
The pilot who was guiding us never panicked or thought anything was out of the ordinary, my 87 year old grandpa didn't flinch to anything that happened and we landed safe and sound at our destination. I soon realized that there was nothing to panic about. The wind and turbulence should be expected and it was probably a fairly mundane flight as flights go.
As I sit here today and think about the experience, I can't help to relate it to investing for the long term. There are going to be times when our minds run to the negative and our emotions run high. There is going to be wind and turbulence, there might even be some panic moments. The knowledge of the person to help guide you and the wisdom of those you are traveling with become very important to managing emotions. The stomach and courage to step on to the plane so you have the opportunity for a wonderful experience...well that's up to you.