Whether you live on the shores of Hawaii, or in the mountains of Colorado, you can learn a thing or two about preparing for retirement by observing surfers. That's right, those bums without a penny to their names can teach you how to prepare for your golden years.

Here are six tips to financial success that you can learn from surfing.

Always Maintain Balance

The first thing that every surf instructor teaches is how to balance on the board. If you've walk down the beach in nearly any beach town, it is likely that you have run into a group of tourists standing on surfboards, on the sand. Despite how nerdy this may look, it is a key element to being able to succeed once out in the ocean. Learn how to balance on your board, and you are well on your way to being a successful surfer.

Always Maintain Balance

The same goes for investing. Many people get carried away with overly risky investments. Others are overly conservative with their retirement funds. The key to earning and protecting your retirement savings is through a well balanced portfolio with both high risk and low risk investments. Know how to effectively balance your retirement, and your financial position will continue to thrive.

Watch the Tides

Professional surfers can't go out and surf anytime they want. They have to wait for the tides and waves to be right. If you go out at the wrong time, the water can be flat and boring, or shallow and dangerous. Surfers follow the ocean, not the other way around.

Watch the tides

Many people decide to invest, and then start looking for an investment. The thing is, good investments show up at their own time. Once you have money ready to invest, be patient. Wait for the right time, and then confidently move forward when a valuable opportunity arises.

Ride the Waves

Paddling too soon or too late can give a surfer an unnecessary, and unenjoyable, thrashing. The same often happens with investing. When the stock market is skyrocketing and everyone is making a lot of money, it is tempting to start throwing in your own money. But don't, you've missed this wave. Patiently waiting for the next one can save you from being unnecessary dragged across the bottom – broke.

Ride the Waves

Watch the Pros

Surfers love watching and learning from other surfers. Most surfing fanatics keep up with blogs, magazines, and competitions going on around the world. Research has shown that those who watch others succeed at something are more likely to succeed at it themselves. We have a tendency to interpret other people's actions as our own.

Therefore, keep an eye on what professional investors are doing. Where do people seem to be putting their money? What and when are people beginning to sell? If you keep up with what others are doing, you can continually learn how to be a better investor yourself.

If you don't have time to follow investment advice on your own, consider investing with a platform like M1Finance  that automatically invest your money in the same funds as Warren Buffet and other prominent advisers.

Beware of Sharks

Surfers often see sharks – and most sharks are not that dangerous. However, a smart surfer will keep his eye on the water and the waves – recognizing that it only takes one nasty shark incident to make life a lot less pleasant.

From the beginning of time there have been scam artists – and there probably always will be. Therefore, it's important to keep your eye out for those who promise returns that seem too good to be true. The key to riches is hard work and time. Any get rich quick scheme that you come across will be taking advantage of someone – and it's usually you. Don't let the sharks attack you or your bank account.

Enjoy the Ride

In short, surfing is about enjoy the experience and moving with the ocean. Investing is the same way. It's important to keep your head above water. Recognize that markets continually fluctuate and don't panic. By patiently and intelligently moving through the financial ocean, you can find yourself swimming in your own sea of riches.

From the historical archives of BankVibe