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What Can We Learn From Serena Williams

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What Can We Learn From Serena Williams

One of the greatest athletes of all time is retiring… from tennis that is  – and what is anticipated to be the last tournament of her storied career has been nothing but incredible so far.

Serena Williams took the tennis world—and sports world– by storm when she stepped onto the scene as a teenager from the rough neighborhood of Compton, Ca in the late 1990s. She won her first grand slam– the first of a record 23 – in 1999 at the U.S. Open in New York City. So, it would be only fitting to see her win in her finale at the U.S. Open.

After an injury at Wimbledon in 2021 sidelined her for a year, Serena had only played four matches this year prior to the U.S. Open. She was only given a 50-to-1 chance of winning the tournament. But on Wednesday night (Aug. 31), Serena unbelievably beat the number-two seed in a three-set match. An awesome win!

She had looked rusty and slow for most of the year, but over the course of four days in New York, it looked like the 40-year-old just might make a magical storybook run for a 24th major title. But unfortunately, that dream ended on Friday night to a crowd of 24,000 cheering fans in a heartbreaking three-set loss that lasted over three hours.

Looking back,  Serena’s game had evolved during her 27-year career - in fact, there are a few aspects to her game that never changed: Her incredible serve, fast feet and fierce competitive attitude. By never giving up, always believing that she will win and utilizing the best tools in her arsenal game-after-game, Serena has earned the title “Greatest of All Time.”

So, what can we learn from Serena to become even better investors? Be persistent and stick with your winning strategy– even when everyone else is betting against you.

Just like this year in the stock market, we’ve been told by the so-called market pundits and strategists that our strategy of investing in growth stocks was a losing strategy. 

Because of the uncertainty surrounding the Federal Reserve, interest rates, inflation and the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, I’m certain many of you would agree that the odds are seemingly stacked against growth investors like you and I. But remember, the game is not over. 

How do you think Serena would react if this was a tennis match? The odds of her becoming a good tennis player when she first started out was so-so but who would've ever thought (other than her) she'd end up as the greatest tennis player of all time. People can prejudge, predict and project uncertainties in life but you don’t have to agree with their beliefs. Serena would have fought back and won the game. 

Patience, persistence, and focus is what eventually takes you to the top. It is for those who are willing to survive the ups-and-downs that’ll thrive at the end. Even when everyone else is betting against you, just keep going. You've done well Serena!

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