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Weekend Edition – Outstanding Portfolios are Like Championship Teams

You often hear about dynasties in sports and how hard it is these days for teams to put together a string of championships. Whether it's losing players to free agency, nagging injuries, or a variety of reasons, repeating as champions is a very difficult task. If you want to win nowadays, it's clear you have to plan your organization out years ahead of time.

Investors face similar challenges as sports franchises. Some years, the markets will move sideways. If you are in solid dividend-paying stocks, however, you'll at least reap the reward of juicy dividend payouts while shares remain flat.

And just like a sports team needs to decide when to cut ties with aging or struggling players, so too must investors monitor their portfolios for underperforming stocks. Sometimes you'll have to make a tough call and get rid of one of your formerly-favorite holdings. The idea, of course, is that the stock you replace that one with will help enhance your overall return in the long run.

Similar to how a championship team goes on a great run, we will have years where our portfolio will just be on fire (shares and dividend payouts rising simultaneously). We always hope for this to be an annual event, but a more realistic goal is to at least make the playoffs. For investors, that means outperforming the markets, even in down years.

For us at Dividend.com, we always aim for championship seasons, but along the way know that investors are in this for the long haul. Outperformance is what we aim to achieve. I'll close this out with a great quote from legendary Green Bay Packers head coach Vince Lombardi:

"Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

Couples Must Get on the Same Financial Page

I try to take note of conversations my wife and I have with other couples. You'd be surprised at the divergence between men and women when it comes to the subject of finances.

The women I have spoken to are much more curious and are the first to say they need to do a better job as a family when it comes to saving money and investing. Guys, on the other hand, often let pride get in their way of admitting a point of weakness, which is a big mistake in my opinion.

For married women that don't handle the household finances, give your husband a wake-up call! Make him recognize what needs to be done if you're going to achieve longer-term goals (kids' college education, funding retirement accounts, buying a home, avoiding paycheck-to-paycheck struggles, etc.).

When it comes to financial stress, women are three times more likely to feel overwhelmed by their situations than men, according to a study from Financial Finesse. Of the 438 women surveyed, 28 percent said they had "high" or "overwhelming" financial stress, and 62 percent reported "some." I'd be even more curious to know how many women have an accurate overall total financial picture of their household.

The odds of having a lasting marriage are said to be around 50%. Money issues have always been a main source of contention with couples. Throw in a tough economy with a slowing job market and you can easily understand the financial strains that many marriages face.

People deal with money in different ways, and that's where marriage train can come off the tracks. For example, you may have a spouse who is very conservative with his/her money and wishes to save as much as they can. On the flipside, the other spouse is all about living for today and never gives one thought about how much money there is saved up for an emergency fund or retirement accounts. These two differences will cause a great deal of stress, which can eventually end in divorce if it doesn't get resolved. And denial from either spouse is never a solution to any problem.

You simply can't afford to miss time when it comes to saving money. Miscalculating the expenses of a home, college education, or other big expenditures can also put you in a big hole. All too often, I hear from people I know who fuss about having to "start over" with tackling their financial issues. In reality, they often failed to properly execute the right strategy to handle their challenges from the beginning. It only gets tougher when you reach your retirement years, and are forced to keep "punching the clock" just to keep up with bills.

All this said, the sooner a couple can get on the same page when it comes to the household finances the better their long term results will eventually be.

I'm sure it's been a long weekend for many of our readers (visiting or hosting loved ones, shopping, etc.), and I hope it's been nothing but good times. Now we get back to the business at hand, at least until the next round of holiday festivities. In the meantime, thanks for letting me share part of this holiday weekend with you! I'd love it if you would consider passing this on to someone you think can use some financial motivation and to be kept in the financial news loop.

See you tomorrow!

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks , as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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