Life Lesson #1: Less is More

Since I was 12 years old, I struggled with moderate to severe acne. I saw multiple physicians including a dermatologist.  I tried everything from acne ointment to acne pills and deep cleansers to chemical peels.  Although it reduced my acne considerably, none of these products were able to completely clear my skin.  No matter what I used, it always came with negative side effects.  I couldn’t stay out in the sun for long periods of time or else my face would burn.  I avoided swimming because my face became irritated when it came to contact with water.

When I reached 21 years old, I grew tired of having to consistently apply products to my face.  I told myself there has be a better way.  I was spending money and time on things that didn’t work.  I came across a simple but ridiculous idea on an acne forum where a person talked about something called the “caveman regimen”.  This idea focused on treating acne by giving the skin time to heal itself.  It also involved doing everything possible to reduce irritation and contact to the skin such as washing your face or applying any products whatsoever.

The method behind this madness was it was going to give your skin the opportunity to heal itself and learn how to heal itself.  Our human bodies have the natural ability to self-heal.

I felt like it was worth a try so I stopped using acne products and avoided washing my face when possible.  Within the first week, things got out of hand.  I experienced significant breakouts and it was something I’ve never seen before.  It reached the point where when I slept on the side of my face, it would leave all kinds of stains on my pillow.

One month later, things were still getting worse. There were countless moments when I felt like giving up.  My friends and family were asking me what I was doing to my face.  It was honestly one of the lowest points of my life. I was lucky to have Amanda who knew all the side effects that I was experiencing from using products and was willing to support me through this crazy journey. I knew it was the right thing to do because I no longer wanted to spend money and time on products that were not long term solutions.

Three months later, the acne was still there and I was still breaking out but by this time, I knew it wasn’t going to get any worse so I continued on.

Six months later, the acne subsided but there were a lot of scars. I began noticing improvements.

One year later, I was clear but still had lots of scars.

Two years later, I was clear and most of the scars had disappeared.

I had no idea the cause of my acne was from the products I was using.  I assumed the prescription and over-the-counter medication prescribed by my doctor was helping my skin and controlling the acne.  I should have known my skin was breaking out because I was irritating it with products.  Who would’ve thought there was such a simple solution?

I share my story because it has a lot of similarities with investing.  It’s easy to get caught up with all the investment products out there.  However, it doesn’t have to be confusing. Sometimes the most effective strategies come from the simplest products.

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