Lending Club Blog

Identifying Factors Beyond Your Control

It can be frustrating when you do everything right and still don’t get the results you expect. This experience can be largely attributed to the fact that there are influential factors beyond your control. Identifying those factors will help you to prepare for the possibility of plans going awry despite your best efforts.

Here are a few types of factors that may affect your personal finances that you can do little about:

Market Forces

Even those who thoroughly believe in efficient market theory will concede that markets often behave in irrational ways. All of your assumptions about an investment can be correct and the market may still not react as expected. Factors like interest rates, consumer confidence, state of the economy, and job cuts can also throw off your plans.

Birth Factors

The family you grow up in and the financial habits of those around you can significantly define your sense of normal behavior. The country in which you are born, your religion, and your citizenship are also influential. Studies have even shown that your birth order within your family can have a large effect on your career.

Acts of God and Man

Even if you survive market forces and birth factors, you are still at the mercy of acts of God and man. Everything from natural disasters to terrorist attacks, car accidents and failing health can have a major impact on your finances and investments.

As much as we might like to convince ourselves that we control our own financial destiny, there are simply too many external factors to allow that to be the case. Being in control of those aspects of our personal finances that we can influence puts us in the best possible position to weather unfavorable changes in those aspects we cannot. Separating these two types of factors will allow you to focus your energy in the right areas and worry less about things beyond your control.

What other factors beyond your control have influenced your finances?

Friday, January 9th, 2009 at 6:42 am

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