Oh, you bought a Tesla? Oh, you bought a million dollar home? Oh, you bought the new iPhone X? IDGAF. That stands for I Don’t Give A Fuck. Sorry to be crude, but sometimes you need a little emphasis when you’re expressing an important point.
We’re now entering silly season in the markets. People are buying cryptocurrencies that no one understands and have very little actual utility. People are chasing stocks higher on a daily basis. Emerging market stocks, tech stocks and all the other riskiest parts of the stock markets are the biggest winners of the year. And a large part of this is due to FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out. After 8 years of straight up stock market gains, rising home prices and now a crypto boom like the world has never seen, there is a palpable feeling of irrational exuberance overtaking the markets.
Now, FOMO is totally natural. No one wants to be left behind. No one wants to see all their friends getting rich while they live pay check to pay check. But financial management has NOTHING to do with what everyone else is doing. Financial management is about setting your own personal goals and then enacting a plan that will help you get there. It doesn’t matter what type of returns the S&P 500 generates or what your friends returned. That has nothing to do with your financial goals. And chasing their returns (after the fact) only means you’re likely to end up taking more risk after these assets have all become even riskier.
This is the hardest part of a market cycle. It’s the part where everyone seems like they’re getting rich without even trying. And FOMO is going to drive many people to do very stupid things in the coming months and years. It’s times like this when you need to sit back, reassess your personal financial goals, make sure you’re still on track and tell yourself “I Don’t Give A Fuck” about my neighbor’s returns or the stock market’s returns or any of the other behavioral temptations that might lure you out of your plan and into something that might just end up derailing your financial goals. IDGAF will set you free from the risk of FOMO. And once you learn the beauty of IDGAF you can sleep soundly knowing there’s nomo FOMO.
Mr. Roche is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Discipline Funds.Discipline Funds is a low fee financial advisory firm with a focus on helping people be more disciplined with their finances.
He is also the author of Pragmatic Capitalism: What Every Investor Needs to Understand About Money and Finance, Understanding the Modern Monetary System and Understanding Modern Portfolio Construction.