In one of the many interviews and documentary about Warren Buffett, “Becoming Warren Buffett” is one that made with Buffett and the cooperation of his family. This documentation focuses more on Buffett the man and his complicated relationships with the people he loved the most.
From the documentary, you will regard Buffett as someone absent-minded who is so often locked in his own world that he is not aware of what is going on around him. Buffett says that there was once he cannot recall the color of the walls of his bedroom and living room. His wife, Susan says, “Physical proximity with Warren doesn’t always mean he’s there with you.” And Buffett’s son, Howard can relate to this sentiment as well because he says that it is quite difficult to connect with his father on an emotional level. Buffett’s daughter Susie also says one should speak to him in sound bites or else there is a high chance that Buffett may lose his thoughts in his head.
The Quality that Made Warren Buffett
One thing that the documentary wants to show is the paradox of Buffett’s qualities. It is his challenging quality of dealing with other people that responsible for his success in his investment career.
Besides showing a strong passion for numbers and his ability to identify undervalued companies, it is Buffett’s ability to buy and hold on to companies through the fluctuations that all market experience that made him one of the greatest investors in the world today.
This is simply because holding on to stocks while the prices go up and down, make a lot of people want to sell and buy other stocks, but this does not happen Buffett. It is his ability to divorce himself from his emotion that makes him a billionaire through investment. Everyone knows that they cannot invest with emotions and they need to be rational. The problem is that most people are irrational and they allow their emotions to guide them rather than their rational thoughts. And at the end of the day, most investors lose money because they fail to stay calm and think straight.
It is difficult to buy when everyone is screaming “sell” or the opposite. And this is exactly what had happened in the 1929 financial crash. When most people were busy selling, Buffett was busy buying stocks at a bargain price. For Buffett, it seems to be so natural that he can be calm and keep his emotions away from affecting his decisions. The ability to divorce yourself from what is going on around you seem to be eluded in the majority of the investors.
So what makes Buffett so rational and are able to ignore everything that is happening around him and focuses on things that he wants? It was his past and his family background.
Buffett’s Past and Family Influenced
The documentary, “Becoming Warren Buffett” shows that Buffett’s quality may have been amplified by his family life when he was a boy. According to Buffett, his father was someone inspirational, affectionate, and also a great dad.
However, his mother was another story. Buffett’s mother was brilliant and ambitious but also suffered from a chronic headache. “You didn’t want to be around her when she was having the headaches. She would lash out,” says Buffett. His sister, Doris puts it bluntly and says, “When I’d wake up in the morning, I’d listen to hear her voice. I could tell by her voice if it was going to be a terrible day or not.” Doris goes to say that she remembers being “terrified” of her mother.
Therefore, Buffett’s emotional reserve is a reaction to the turmoil at home. While there are many reasons that contribute to Buffett’s quality and his ability to ignore what is happening around him, a large part of it is because of his mother’s chronic headache that forced Buffett to become less emotionally attached and to be able to think more rationally.
Besides the influenced by his mother, Buffett says that his wife, Susan, supported him a lot in pushing back against the reserve and opens himself up to the world. In the documentary, Buffett says that he was a lopsided person and it was Susan’s effort to put him together.
The documentary also tells how Buffett’s wife playing as the driving force behind his evolution as a person. Susan was the one who inspired Buffett to be more of a public figure and give more of his money away for charity purposes.
How You Can Divorce Yourself from Your Surrounding
No doubt that one of the keys to success in investing like Warren Buffett is to develop the ability to ignore the surrounding and divorce yourself from what is happening around you. You need to learn how to think rationally without being influenced by the market’s fluctuation.
Science has shown that schooling can improve rational thought. And everyone who loves Buffett will know one of the key habits of Buffett is to read. Buffett reads a lot and this has somehow made him more logical when it comes to investing.
Please understand that your rational thinking can only improve according to what you study. As for Buffett, he reads a lot of newspaper regarding the economy and he reads a lot of books about investing. As a result, he becomes more rational than the majority of the investors out there who think emotionally rather than rationally.
When you are learning about a certain subject, you will gain a better understanding of the pattern and hence, predict and “peek” a little into the future. You will be better prepared when compare with others and make better decisions in your life. Buffett understands this and he sticks to his initial decision to buy and hold regardless of how the market performs. He knows that at the end if he is buying an undervalued company that performs, he will eventually reap the rewards.
Thus, you too can develop this ability to divorce yourself from your surrounding without being influenced by the market. When you are able to think logically and rationally, you will be able to make better judgments that will make sure you stick to your game plan. When everyone is shouting “sell”, you are able to make clear decision to buy and hold, just like how Buffett did over the past many years.