It can be overwhelming trying to figure out what to put in your crypto portfolio. Which layer 1 alternatives should you place in there? Is LUNA eclipsing SOL? What is your metaverse play, and do you have any gaming coins?

Not everyone wants to go down the metaverse and gaming rabbit holes, admittedly. There are 100X possibilities, perhaps, but it can feel like a casino, and scratch cards are available if you like gambling, which is not to discourage anyone from playing, but it’s not for everyone.

When it comes to the larger contenders, the layer 1 alternatives, the landscape, although still crowded, becomes a little more inviting. By layer 1 alternatives, what is meant is competitors to Ethereum (less so Bitcoin, which is in a category of its own), that are built to run decentralized applications and handle things like DeFi and NFTs.

Here, you are looking at networks such as Cardano, Solana, Avalanche, Fantom, Cosmos and there are more too. These are names that are big enough that any newcomer will come across them soon enough. And, in terms of what they actually do, that makes sense quickly too. As mentioned, they are, basically, competing with Ethereum (although Cosmos is a little different, as it goes about constructing an internet of blockchains).

You see praise and criticism, and it is not always clear what is true, and what is deliberately meant to steer investors in a certain direction, put out there by commenters with ulterior motives. Cardano is meticulous but takes an age to progress. Solana is speedy but not sufficiently decentralized. Fantom just had a key advisor walk away. And, so on.

It is at this point that you might decide to try some networks out and see how they work. There is nothing better than first-hand experience, but in the end that doesn’t always clear matters up, because the thing is, the contenders all work well.

You pick up some nice-looking NFTs on Cardano and Solana. Play around with the Osmosis DEX on Cosmos. Tour through various DeFi landscapes. All the wallets you’ve downloaded operate smoothly, transactions are quick, sometimes impressively speedy, rarely delayed to any greatly troubling extent.

What you find is, they all seem to function impressively and be solidly put together, and after a while, they even start to feel relatively user-friendly. And, it’s at exactly this point that it can make sense to think about changing direction and becoming a crypto conservative.

To be clear, a crypto conservative’s portfolio contains two things: Bitcoin and Ethereum.

It is instructive to look at snapshots of the top ten (or twenty or thirty) cryptos over the past few years. You’ll notice something. From position three and lower, there is constant change, names come and go, and projects appear, ascend, and then disappear into obscurity.

By contrast, the top two are ever-present and never move, except for their rapidly growing numbers, market cap and price, which constantly spin larger and larger. The top two, of course, are Bitcoin and Ethereum.

In the end, you can’t help but wonder, is it worth investing in crypto aside from these two? Sure, perhaps you can make some quick gains on the small caps and get out when you’re on top. And, then you can put your gains into, well, the top two.

At this point in what may, conceivably, be a critical stage in a global crypto transition, a multitude of projects can be skillfully built out and project all the right signals, but still, is it worthwhile challenging Bitcoin and Ethereum, and what would be the point in doing so? In this field perhaps more than any other, network effects are critical, and by that measure, there is an increasingly unassailable gap opening up.

And, besides which, although we ought to be emotionless and analytical when it comes to investing, it is difficult not to get attached to those top two, on levels that go beyond just investment and returns. Bitcoin created all this, the entire landscape, and its earliest believers are among the most dedicated and driven people around, operating with true conviction from the very start.

And, then there is Ethereum, committed, as much so as bitcoiners are, to decentralization and neutrality, and to the creation of a global computing network that enables fairness and freedom through technology and code.

We must not be overly romantic, but these seem like noble, admirably eccentric enterprises that, self-starting and deliberately out of step with all established, power-wielding structures, just might work. And, if that isn’t worth buying into for the long haul, then I don’t know what is.

Sometimes it appears, simultaneously, that Bitcoin will decentralize money, while Ethereum is decentralizing the web, and that neither of these changes can come a moment too soon. In that case, if you want to peacefully fix what is broken and at the same time have a portfolio you can feel relaxed about, then it pays to be a crypto conservative.

It can be overwhelming trying to figure out what to put in your crypto portfolio. Which layer 1 alternatives should you place in there? Is LUNA eclipsing SOL? What is your metaverse play, and do you have any gaming coins?

Not everyone wants to go down the metaverse and gaming rabbit holes, admittedly. There are 100X possibilities, perhaps, but it can feel like a casino, and scratch cards are available if you like gambling, which is not to discourage anyone from playing, but it’s not for everyone.

When it comes to the larger contenders, the layer 1 alternatives, the landscape, although still crowded, becomes a little more inviting. By layer 1 alternatives, what is meant is competitors to Ethereum (less so Bitcoin, which is in a category of its own), that are built to run decentralized applications and handle things like DeFi and NFTs.

Here, you are looking at networks such as Cardano, Solana, Avalanche, Fantom, Cosmos and there are more too. These are names that are big enough that any newcomer will come across them soon enough. And, in terms of what they actually do, that makes sense quickly too. As mentioned, they are, basically, competing with Ethereum (although Cosmos is a little different, as it goes about constructing an internet of blockchains).

You see praise and criticism, and it is not always clear what is true, and what is deliberately meant to steer investors in a certain direction, put out there by commenters with ulterior motives. Cardano is meticulous but takes an age to progress. Solana is speedy but not sufficiently decentralized. Fantom just had a key advisor walk away. And, so on.

It is at this point that you might decide to try some networks out and see how they work. There is nothing better than first-hand experience, but in the end that doesn’t always clear matters up, because the thing is, the contenders all work well.

You pick up some nice-looking NFTs on Cardano and Solana. Play around with the Osmosis DEX on Cosmos. Tour through various DeFi landscapes. All the wallets you’ve downloaded operate smoothly, transactions are quick, sometimes impressively speedy, rarely delayed to any greatly troubling extent.

What you find is, they all seem to function impressively and be solidly put together, and after a while, they even start to feel relatively user-friendly. And, it’s at exactly this point that it can make sense to think about changing direction and becoming a crypto conservative.

To be clear, a crypto conservative’s portfolio contains two things: Bitcoin and Ethereum.

It is instructive to look at snapshots of the top ten (or twenty or thirty) cryptos over the past few years. You’ll notice something. From position three and lower, there is constant change, names come and go, and projects appear, ascend, and then disappear into obscurity.

By contrast, the top two are ever-present and never move, except for their rapidly growing numbers, market cap and price, which constantly spin larger and larger. The top two, of course, are Bitcoin and Ethereum.

In the end, you can’t help but wonder, is it worth investing in crypto aside from these two? Sure, perhaps you can make some quick gains on the small caps and get out when you’re on top. And, then you can put your gains into, well, the top two.

At this point in what may, conceivably, be a critical stage in a global crypto transition, a multitude of projects can be skillfully built out and project all the right signals, but still, is it worthwhile challenging Bitcoin and Ethereum, and what would be the point in doing so? In this field perhaps more than any other, network effects are critical, and by that measure, there is an increasingly unassailable gap opening up.

And, besides which, although we ought to be emotionless and analytical when it comes to investing, it is difficult not to get attached to those top two, on levels that go beyond just investment and returns. Bitcoin created all this, the entire landscape, and its earliest believers are among the most dedicated and driven people around, operating with true conviction from the very start.

And, then there is Ethereum, committed, as much so as bitcoiners are, to decentralization and neutrality, and to the creation of a global computing network that enables fairness and freedom through technology and code.

We must not be overly romantic, but these seem like noble, admirably eccentric enterprises that, self-starting and deliberately out of step with all established, power-wielding structures, just might work. And, if that isn’t worth buying into for the long haul, then I don’t know what is.

Sometimes it appears, simultaneously, that Bitcoin will decentralize money, while Ethereum is decentralizing the web, and that neither of these changes can come a moment too soon. In that case, if you want to peacefully fix what is broken and at the same time have a portfolio you can feel relaxed about, then it pays to be a crypto conservative.