Get Started Investing: Investor Stories To Inspire Your Own

16 August 2021
Investing for the first time can be tricky, so it’s reassuring to hear the experience of others. In this edited extract from the book Get Started Investing, Bryce and Alec from Equity Mates share investing stories to help inspire your own.

So, you want to get started investing? But perhaps you don’t know where to start. Or, you feel like it’s too risky. You’re afraid of making mistakes. You want to do a lot of research before putting your money in. These are all reasonable emotions to have. Starting your investing journey can feel daunting, and difficult. However, the good news is that it’s not!

Investing in the share market has never been easier. You just need to take that first step, and it’s likely the rest will come. We’re big believers in sharing the stories of other investors, so you don’t feel you’re going at it alone. Everyone makes mistakes when they start out. You will make mistakes, but you’ll learn a lesson or two along the way, and realise that everything you heard about getting started with investing is most likely a myth!

We want to share a few investing stories from the Equity Mates community, as who knows… they may give you the confidence you need to start your own investment journey!

Sascha, Head Of Production at Equity Mates

Your biggest investing mistake:

I read One Up on Wall Street recently, and thought I could be a value investor, researched a stock for a hot minute, bought it within a week, read something negative on the internet and my conviction crumbled overnight. I sold out straight away because I realised I was trying to be something I wasn’t, and I’d gone against all the rules I’d put in place for myself (take your time, research, must have dividend reinvestment program).

The other mistake I made was investing money I probably need and wasn’t happy to lock away. I topped up my AFI investments in February 2020 when I was living in London. Then when it seemed like the world was going to end, there were layoffs at work and airfares were suddenly $14,000 and I was desperate to get home, I kind of wanted that money back.

Your biggest investing lesson:

Too many to write here! In hindsight, I wish I’d just stuck with small, consistent top-ups over the past six years, rather than lumpy giant amounts when I had some spare cash. But, then again I just didn’t have the money to spare at the time. And the flip side is having shares and knowing I had wealth building in a portfolio allowed me to make brave life decisions (like quitting my job and moving to London with nothing lined up). So I’d say that my greatest takeaway is that investing has built my confidence in other areas of my life, and that’s surprised me.

The biggest myth about investing:

That it’s a casino! I just don’t understand how people are willing to ignore the data, the huge growth in retail investors building passive wealth, and even the story of Warren Buffet. But will instead justify their hesitation by telling you about their mate who took a punt on a highly speculative stock and lost everything, and that’s why they aren’t interested. Your friend is the outlier.

Lachlan, Get Started Investing community member

Your biggest investment mistake:

Dogecoin, enough said…

Your biggest investing lesson:

Wait till you have enough in your investment account before paying too many brokerage fees.

The biggest myth about investing:

When people say: “I don’t understand the stock market, so I shouldn’t start at all.” I think you should have a crack with what’s available to you.

Thomas – ex-RBA economist, and host of Comedian v Economist

Your biggest investing mistake:

Giving away all my possessions and liquidating everything to join a circus troupe and then spending three years travelling in Europe and the Middle East. It was an awesome experience, but in hindsight, I wish I had worked harder to find a way to fund it other than through accumulated earnings. But, it was still totally worth it.

Your biggest investing lesson:

Time and compounding are everything.

The biggest myth about investing:

The idea that anyone really knows what’s going on, or that it’s even possible to know what’s going on. We’re all doing the best we can to navigate an unknowable future. At any point in time, there are always a number of really good, but conflicting, explanations about what’s happening and what’s about to happen. It’s ok to feel bewildered. All economists are.

This is an edited extract from Get Started Investing (Allen & Unwin $32.99), exclusive to Canstar. The book draws on advice from over 150 expert investors from around the world, and stories from everyday small investors. Whether you’re in school, building your career or nearing retirement, you can make your money work for you.

Cover image: Elena Hramova/

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