Cycles

The End Is Where It Begins

Our universe is based on cycles. Day and night repeat regularly every 24 hours. The seasons follow each other in a period of a year. We breathe rhythmically. Our hearts beat in regular patterns. But the cycles run deeper than we usually think. For example, there is the cycle of our creativity of 7 years, first noted by Pythagoras. Or, the 29-year cycle of the material structure we create about ourselves in the world? And how about the very mundane 18-year cycle of buying and selling real estate property in the United States?

There are practically cycles in everything around and within us. Interestingly, there appear to be cycles unrelated to each other yet following ups and downs in the same manner over the same period of time. There is a tradition of observing those correlated cycles and using that information for practical matters. You can find some of its practitioners among the reputable astrologers. They would call the 29-year cycle Saturnian since that planet completes its revolution around the Sun in 29 years. They can also tell you when to set new material goals and when to let go of outgrown habits. Some psychologists have also begun using the knowledge of cycles in the human psyche in their counseling practices.

Other players in this field of cycles have emerged from the ranks of the western sciences. You can recognize them by their talk of Fourier analysis and time series. Yet many others, I suspect, know of various cycles and their correlations but keep to themselves for one or another reason.

What Comes Around, Goes Around

“So, what is it to me?” I can easily imagine you asking. Well, the matter is that living in harmony with the ups and downs of the cosmic cycles calls for much less effort than if you go against them. Consider this example from my personal experience.

In the mid-2000s, our family was new, and we were eager to establish ourselves as homeowners for the first time. The prices, however, were forbidding, and the houses were being sold before they could even hit the market. Family and friends, presumably more financially savvy and wise, counseled us to hurry up, to buy now. It was a good investment, they said, even with rising costs. Only, by then, I had come across the record of the 18-year cycle of real estate activity, and I was certain things would come around. After all, they had followed a fairly regular pattern of repeating every 18 years for a century and a half. We eventually bought our house in 2008, just as the housing market was beginning to plummet, but before, it was too difficult for young families to secure a loan. By knowing about the cycles, we were able to hold on until the time was right and thus save ourselves much mental anguish and financial distress.

I am not here to tell you how to time your investing strategies according to the universal cycles, or when to buy or sell your house. Besides, you are not here looking for such information, either, are you? What I can tell you, however, is that you can tap into the major cycles of your own life and thus save yourself a lot of needless effort and headache. If you sit back and watch carefully, I can point them out to you.  Once a crest comes, hop on and enjoy the ride. Then, when it passes, step back, let go, and wait until the next one comes your way. Dolphins do it all the time, why not you?