Engage motivation! Some days there’s an urgency which makes motivation easier. Today’s post is pushed along by 40 mph winds across the Sound and the resultant flickering lights. Must post before the power goes out. Most days though, motivation is harder to find. Today, I’m leveraging everything I can from news sources and tidbits. They are encouraging, though like a lot of encouragements, they are intangible – for now. I wait for the then.
I do enjoy my little house on the end of this big island. The weather comes up the sound and I get to watch storm clouds, white caps, and rainbows. Nature’s dynamism is far better than some 2-D show that buffers by on YouTube. To see the big ships dwarfed by the geography which is dwarfed by the meteorology is humbling and incredibly valuable. At least for a while, daily troubles seem small.
And then I have to pay the bills and daily troubles blot out the view. My business is doing better than ever, and yet it must continue to grow if I am going to finally catch up on back debts, deferred repairs, and postponed plans. Tonight I have to unwrap two more packages from the mortgage company, scan, copy, and mail them to my counselor, and wonder how the mortgage modification meeting will go in early March. The grandeur of nature steps aside when I wonder about what comes next.
Many have commented on my positive attitude. I like to think it is based on something more substantial than words. For the most part, my litany of optimism is based on my backup plans that I described years ago. I continue to work to those plans and they may yet succeed. Fortunately, there have been some news items that buttressed my beliefs.
Within the world of investments, my portfolio continues to entice without appreciation, and yet people are saying good things about the stocks I own. Maybe the emphasis is finally returning to innovators. AMSC has been called “well-positioned“. GERN’s technology is impressive enough to make some think in terms of accelerated approvals. GIG’s offering was over-subscribed. MVIS’s meeting left one shareholder to be “more optimistic than ever”. RSOL received upgrades as analysts realize solar is a growth industry. If these stocks climb and cover my cost basis, I’ll be able to comfortably get out of credit card debt and make regular mortgage payments. If they climb to my estimate of “present value of future revenue” then I’ll be able to pay off the mortgage.
Despite wanting to keep my house, the easiest way to take care of my mortgage is to sell my house. That is still a prudent choice if my business doesn’t grow considerably or if my portfolio doesn’t re-appreciate. So, the good news; someone looked at my house today. The house has been for sale for over a year, and of all the times I’ve had to put a house on the market, this has been the quietest. But Seattle’s market is booming, and it’s just across the ferry ride. Maybe that enthusiasm, and realization of island values, means someone will buy my house. I don’t want to lose it, but I really don’t want to be in debt anymore.
If doing the same thing hasn’t produced the desired results, then maybe it is time to try something different. In my work for New Road Map Foundation I frequently come across news for alternative currencies. If our current currency is based on faith in the dollar, and if that faith fails because of institutional excesses or assaults like Target witnessed, then the alternative currencies look more appealing. It is one reason I’ve been watching Bitcoins, and kicking myself for not buying them early. They’ve gone from being under a dollar to over $600.
Bitcoins are not the only alternative currency. I realized that I had some Linden dollars. Linden dollars are the currency used in Second Life, the alternative reality game that I explored a few years ago. Sure enough, Linden dollars can be traded for Bitcoins. My optimism comes for a surprise. I’d effectively abandoned my Second Life life because my computer couldn’t keep up with the software upgrades. I remember having saved a few extra real dollars in Linden dollars back when I was active, and I’d never taken them out. It was a kick to see that my account had accrued to over L$115,000. The exchange rate for US dollars knocks that down to about $1500, or a couple of Bitcoins and some change.
I haven’t decided what to do with my Linden dollars. I can’t bank on the house showing or the enthusiasms for my stocks. But I can remind myself that there are enough reasons for me to be encouraged. As most investors know, diversification is one of the easiest ways to manage risk. My future is diversified across my business, my stocks, and my acceptance of change. Like the client’s check I finally received for work I did over a year ago, good things find their own timing and all I have to do is keep that door open for them.