Please understand it is natural for the markets to expand (rise)
and to
contract (fall) as they move through the business cycle.  

A Bumpy Ride:

The chart above shows the market volatility of the DJIA (Dow Jones
Industrial Average) from 2007 through 2013.  It shows the over 50%
drop in 2008 and the subsequent recovery.  
Over the past 84 years
Small Stocks produced a compound rate of return of 12.1% and
Large Stocks of 9.9%
.  It is important to know it was a bumpy ride.   
With today's 40 year record low interest rates it is difficult to find any
returns to cover a long term inflation average of 3% and taxes other
than stocks and stock funds.  Another factor to remember is most
retirement portfolios are constructed with a mix of stocks (or stock
funds) and bonds (or bond funds) and cash.  Investing in the markets
should only be for longer time frames with 5 years being the minimum.

A Balanced Strategy:

Balance and long term are the key words here.   Even if you have
already retired or are close to it retirement can easily reach 30 plus
years and the need to offset inflation and taxes will continue.  

Stocks on Sale:

During the past 40 years there have been 6 events where the market
has dropped an average of 32% and recovered.  Knowing this will help
when the next inevitable and natural contraction comes.  Market drops
are opportunities to buy.  Stocks on Sale.

If you find yourself forgetting "It is Natural" during such a time the best
thing to do is to call me and we can discuss this.  Thank you.
late 2007 to early 2013