The great Alabama coach “Bear” Bryant once said, “Defense wins championships,” and you can bet that almost every great coach in nearly every sport has shared that same philosophy. Just think about some of the great sports dynasties, teams that won championships year after year: the Green Bay Packers under Vince Lombardi, the Boston Celtics under “Red” Auerbach, or the Yankees under Joe Torre. The list could go on and on.
All these teams knew how to score, yes, but they all started with the premise that a strong defense made their offense better. Strategically, they knew how to win games, but they focused first on strategies that ensured they wouldn’t lose games.
Why is that same approach so critical when it comes to your finances and — in particular, saving and investing for retirement? It’s simply because when you’re talking about your “life savings,” losses can potentially have a huge impact on your life! How huge? Well, consider the fact that if you have all or most of your investments invested for growth in the stock market and your portfolio loses 50% of its value, you will need to regain 100% of it to break even. That takes time and depends on whether the market keeps growing or drops again.