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Insider Trading: Is it Motivated by Greed or a Competitive Nature?


Insider Trading: Is it Motivated by Greed or a Competitive Nature?

Amanda Setili shares an article on the pitfalls of comparison and a competitive mindset.

Earlier this week, I was on a group Zoom with executive coach Marshall Goldsmith when he posed a particularly provocative question: why is it that incredibly affluent individuals continue to engage in insider trading?

Marshall then offered a theory.

The way income is distributed, the closer you get to the top of the heap, the further you are from the next person in front of you. So you work and strive to pass someone, and you are rewarded by being further behind than you were before.

This highlights the tremendous flaw in being extrinsically motivated. When you measure your success against external metrics such as how other people are doing, there will always be disappointment and frustration.

There will always be someone with…

●     A bigger boat

●     A nicer home

●     More money

●     Better investment performance

No matter how hard you work, you will need to strive even more. You will need to pass that next person. It’s a soul-destroying way to move through life.

A much better approach is to decide what matters most to you. How do you want to live? Which values are most dear to you? How do you want to spend your days?

Instead of comparing yourself to others, compare yourself to yourself. Did you do your best this week, month or year versus your own priorities?

I say this as someone who has often been tempted to compare myself to others. Over time, I have realized that living life my way is far more fulfilling than competing with everyone around me.

Key points include:

  • Self-assessment
  • Identifying values

  • Setting personal goals

Read the full article, Why Only Trying to Win Is a Losing Strategy, on Linkedin.