Fall has officially arrived, and the college football season has officially begun (sort of). If you’ve ever been to a college football game, you’ve probably witnessed the tradition of players and fans holding up four fingers at the end of the third quarter, signaling that the fourth and final quarter is about to begin. It’s a sign that the game is almost over, and it all comes down to this.
I think it’s fair to say that the first three quarters of 2020 have felt like a hard-fought football game. Collectively, we’ve taken a lot of hits. We’ve scored some points, but we’ve also made our share of mistakes. We’re worn out, and yet we know there’s a lot of work left to be done before the year is over. With COVID-19 lingering, a contentious election coming up, and a host of social and economic issues still unresolved, the “game” is far from won.
So go ahead and take a moment to raise your arm to the sky and hold those four fingers high. Here comes the fourth quarter…time to rally!
Now, let’s huddle up. Here’s the game plan:
- The virus was carving up our defense early on. We made some good adjustments, but COVID is just going to keep on coming, so we’ve got to maintain our effort! Follow the safety protocols, focus on the fundamentals, communicate with each other, and play together as a team.
- The political players have been doing a lot of jawing. I know it’s tempting to start talking back or throwing punches, but don’t give in! You’ll get penalized, and that won’t help you or your teammates. Stay focused and keep your emotions in check. Let your actions do the talking and vote.
- While we’re on that topic, a lot of you have been jawing at each other and pointing the finger when your teammates make mistakes. Remember, we’re all on the same team! Rather than focus on the mistakes, we’ve got to encourage each other to do better and move on.
- Investing is a game of inches. We don’t need to throw a Hail Mary on every play just because some other teams are playing more aggressively this season. Let’s stick to a mix of passes (stocks) and runs (bonds) and focus on getting first downs. We know we're going to lose yardage every now and then, but we’re going to have a few big plays, too. The key is staying patient, disciplined, and mentally strong.
- We can’t execute our financial game plans without any pocket protection. There have been a lot of questionable calls and unsportsmanlike behavior this year, but we can’t get distracted and allow creditors, excess taxes, or unscrupulous players to break through and get the sack or force a turnover. We need strong blocking from our accountants, attorneys, and advisors.
- Typically, we don’t hand out the game ball until the game is over, but no matter what happens in the fourth quarter, let’s go ahead and recognize our MVPs: the essential workers who have enabled us to keep moving forward. We wouldn’t be in this position without them.
Okay everybody, victory on three, victory on three. Ready? One, two, three, VICTORY!
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