Zen & The Art of Trading

I’ve been listening to a lot of Allan Watts lately.   He is largely accredited for bringing eastern philosophy into to western society in a highly digestible way.  What I want to focus on is knowing without knowing.

As a trader we spend hours scanning charts, searching for the setups we know best, that we know have a high probability of reward.  Though if it was that simple we would just automate what we do and sit at the beach all day.  There is something more I believe.

There is a feeling that occurs, a knowing.  You look at the chart and you know what it will do.  As if you have some sort of pre-cognition.  What is this? As if the stars have aligned and you somehow intuitively know.  When your brain kicks in you may second guess yourself, change your mind, look for evidence to verify this feeling but you know what you know.

The mind, however wants to make up a story about why you feel this way.  It is pointless.  Just as fire does not burn itself, nor does a knife cut itself.  You will not know what you know by logic, thought, or evidence.  You just know…

How often do you feel this as a trader?  What do you do when you have this feeling?  Do you journal it? Do you always take the trade?  Keeping track of these moments is critical in my success because there is a high order knowing I believe that I do not have access too directly.  Perhaps over time with enough sample, I can begin to understand what I do know or at least plug it into a deep learning model 🙂

Shut off the f*&king Podcast

This post will be a deviation from my series on Charlie Munger’s Cognitive Biases & Integral Theory in Finance.

As Americans we consume.  We consume as if our life depends on it.  When I say consume I’m sure you’re thinking, buying things on amazon.com or dining out.  This isn’t what I’m talking about.  I’m talking all consumption. Listening to music, podcasts, buy materials, education, learning, and anything where you are getting new input.

SHUT ALL THAT SHIT OFF and just sit in silence for 5 mins.  Watch how fast those thoughts speed through your mind.  See if you can shut it off. I doubt you can.  Why? Because you consume and you can’t stop.

The dialect of my generation is consumption with purpose.  “Spend money on experiences. Spend money on things that will save you time. Spend money on education & learning, or just download free podcasts.” CONSUME!

Stop consuming. Let the mind relax. Let your mind f&^king dream again. Explore your thoughts without hearing Entrepreneur on Fire in the background. Shut off the F&^king podcast.  Start Dreaming again.