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February 21 - 28

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Questions

(Quotes from Ed in Red)

Answers

Mon, 28 Feb 2005

2005 Proclamation

I fully commit to be the best that I can in everything I do.

Yes.

Sat, 26 Feb 2005

 

ES

 

Ed,



Regarding your response to posts from Mon, 31 Jan 2005 and Sat, 29 Jan 2005:

 



I don't have enough information to identify the posts. I have 4 posts for each day.  You can  specify a post by date and title. 

 

 I'm taking "ES" to mean Eminently Sensible. 

 

Thank you for your support.

Fri, 25 Feb 2005

 

Breathwork Physiology Question

Hi Ed,


I am wondering about one of the physiological aspects of Breathwork.

 

My understanding is that hyperventilation increases the amount of oxygen in the blood and also reduces the amount of carbon dioxide causing the blood to become more alkaline.

 

The brain responds to this situation by vasoconstriction. My question to you is this: Would increasing the oxygen content in the air that the breather inhales during Breathwork exercises result in reaching holotropic states more easily or rapidly?


Thanks,

 

Hyperventilation reduces the CO2 level in the blood. This decreases the carbonic acid level and raises blood pH. (Alkalosis).

 

Air contains about 4/5 N2,  1/5 O2 and about 400 parts per million CO2.  The air you exhale has about 2-3% CO2.

 

Increasing ambient O2 content (versus N2) per your suggestion, would not significantly change the partial pressure of CO2 and would not effect the transfer rate of CO2

 

Changing the O2 / N2 balance might have unhealthy effects on the body.

 

 

 

Pharmacotherapy

 

Some problems with mind-altering drugs

 

bullet

they reduce mental activity

bullet

they interfere with getting high on life

bullet

they wear off

FAQ does not recommend the use of drugs or psycho-active substances. FAQ does not recommend breathing anything except natural air. In TTP we celebrate the body just the way it is.

 

Clip: http://www.chaishop.com/text9/

0/se/news/stoned.htm

Fri, 25 Feb 2005

 

The Pharma in the Deal


Hi Ed,

While reviewing your FAQ this morning, I was struck by the post from the person labeled:

Tue, 1 Feb 2005: Consulting

I’m no psychiatrist, but I was struck by the periodicity of highs and lows, his age at onset and the fact that it predates his trading.

 

If this represents undiagnosed bipolar disease, he may benefit from formal psychiatric / psychological evaluation as well as the tribe.

 

After nearly twenty years of medical practice, I believe a little judicious pharmacotherapy can go a long way. For that matter, I’ve thought the same thing about Livermore.

Looking forward to your book, while also enjoying the now …

Yes.

 

TTP and drugs are different, even exclusive, approaches to well being. 

 

People who use one approach, seem to lose their taste for the other.

 

TTP helps people break addictions of many kinds, including tobacco, alcohol, psycho-active substances, day-trading, and even the need to have everything calm and quiet.

 

Some doctors dislike cycles. They prescribe drugs to even people out.

 

Up here at Lake Tahoe, I notice that healthy trees go through a yearly cycle.  People go through monthly and daily cycles. Breathing is cyclic.  Many creative people tend to operate within a cycle of moods.  Without these cycles, everything stops, and dies.

 

Your urinary process is cyclical.  Mostly you excrete nothing, Then, from time to time, you have a very dramatic outpouring.

 

If you dislike cycles and cannot stand experiencing them, you could position an exit tube to bypass your bladder, so you could excrete urine in a steady-drip mode.

 

The TTP alternative is for you to experience the positive intention of cycles.

 

 

No More Urgency

no more need to find a place

 

when you wear Bag-It

 

The stable solution

for those who like to keep life

smooth and cycle-free.

 

Clip: http://www.geocities.com/

myaeda1/peeing.jpg

Thu, 24 Feb 2005

 

STOP



Hi Ed,

I move locations and join a new tribe.

The first session with the new group I bust at the seams with issues and volunteer to work first. I am anxious about not belonging and feel embarrassment / excitement like I had as a kid on the first day at school. The tribe is highly skilled and work me through some of my forms. I go through the forms and even put them all together.

I feel my feelings, but notice the part I enjoy the most is when I get out of my forms and stop / relax.

 

The tribe asks if I am willing to feel my feelings and go through the combined forms again. At the end I again enjoy the stopping bit the most and get annoyed when pushed by the tribe to continue. Tribe members offer encouragement, but in doing so I resist and do not want to go on. A tribe member picks up that I enjoy the stopping part and encourages me to feel the stopping ... more, more. Now - stop the stopping! What the f--- is that?   Now I am really annoyed. The Tribe pushes me on ... stop the stopping ... be annoyed.

I give it a go and realize we are on to something big. Aha. I am a stubborn person and do not like when I am told what to do. In fact this often leads me to do the opposite (not a great thing when trying to follow a trading system).

I feel exhausted and good as my hot seat session ends.

Yes !

 

 

 

A Stop Order

 

The Positive Intention

is to support risk management.

 

 

Clip: http://www.cme.com/images/stop2.gif

 

 

 

Thu, 24 Feb 2005

 

Same Ol' System


Hi Ed,


Do you trade the same systems you traded 20 years ago?

In 1972, when I start trading, successful investors cite these rules as ones that they remember their predecessors citing:

 

bullet

Trade with the Trend.

bullet

Ride Winners

bullet

Cut Losers

bullet

Manage Risk

 

I see nothing to change.

Thu, 24 Feb 2005

 

Golfers for Hire

Hello,

I recently read the Trend Following by Mike Covel. I was very intrigued by your strategies, wisdom and success.

I have been in the mortgage business for a couple of years now. After reading about the great trend followers I want to get into the markets.

I am currently in [City]. I was wondering if you could recommend a good firm in my area who may be hiring.

 

Actually, I would not mind moving to a location where I could play golf year round.

Ps: Could you recommend any other books which share your trading philosophy?

I appreciate your time and consideration.

See Resources, above, for books. 

 

I gather you want to know a firm in your area who is hiring and you would also like to move.

 

You might consider taking up golf as a career, trading as a hobby.

 

 

Golf

is a good occupation

 

for people who like

to move around

 

Clip: http://www.bestreadguide.com/

daytonabeach/images/011705/

golfsunset.jpg

Thu, 24 Feb 2005

 

Invitation


Hi Ed,

May I take an opportunity to invite you to the [City] Tribe on your world tour; I know my fellow members have also expressed to you their intentions by encouraging you to visit. Perhaps you will need help in organizing such a visit. I would be very happy to assist you, please note below my contact details should you wish to get in touch.

I am in the final stages of writing a book. I have a Workshop to deliver in May.  I plan to visit some Tribes around mid-year.

Tue, 22 Feb 2005

 

Personal Development and Relationships

Ed,

Congrats on a great site, I am a big fan. It provide a very stimulating perspective on financial markets and personal growth.

Your interview in Market Wizards, although several years old is still very valuable in the way it documents how one should pursue dreams and ambitions in a particular area.

What I would like to find out is what advice do you have for pursuing one's ambitions in one's personal life?

 

Would you view this as akin in some ways to success in trading or whatever activity, or are their differences?

For instance, someone could be a very successful writer, but this represents an individual achievement. But in one's personal life the achievement is centered more about a group focus, or at least a focus of more than person, whether friends, family, marriage, contacts. So, the dynamic is essentially different.

You talked in Market Wizards about the role of positive expectations in helping trading activity, and also the joy of losing and pain of winning. But as a young guy would you have a similar perspective on the personal life you hoped to cultivate? Did you have a dream and aspiration in this way as well, or was it more about going with the flow for you?

These questions will be of help to me for I am young guy, and have a fairly good idea of what I want in career terms, and enjoy developing and exploring in my personal life, in terms of relationships and new things. I think a personal life is something that keeps expanding, and it is also something that you must build as well.

But if you have any thoughts on this they would be much appreciated. Maybe it is just a case of intention equals result, as you have before said.

FAQ does not give advice or reveal personal information.  See ground rules.

 

People seem to be getting pretty good answers to the kind of questions you raise, by participating in a Trading Tribe.

Tue, 22 Feb 2005

 

Position Sizing Question


Hi,

I am trying to reach the creator of a post on your site.  If the poster is still following the Tribe, could he include a simple explanation of the 3 steps followed to create an accounts position size. I have coded it in excel easily, However I am a bit mystified by the reasoning of the calculations.

FAQ does not reveal the identity of contributors - or provide a way for readers to contact them.

 

 

People are More Willing

to be Vulnerable

 

when they feel safe.

 

Clip: http://www.ul.com/about/

history/imgs/safe.gif

Tue, 22 Feb 2005

 

An interested prodigy?


Ed,


Not sure were to begin this email, however I find that what I have read about you and the trend following mentality is something that I can enjoy thoroughly.

 

I have read your Trading Tribe FAQ's and philosophies, and clearly understand the mental side of the trading world.

 

I would be happy to provide my experience in the trading environment if you so desire. It has revolved around me trading my own money, and also mentoring others under a proprietary group that I founded.

 

The training of others began as a simple gesture of something I thought I would enjoy, only to follow into a mentoring of others and a true appreciation of what the business has brought me both financially and emotionally through others.


So back to the beginning, why this email. I wonder if you still offer courses in developing Trend traders, or studies of the Donchian methods.

 

I read not long ago of a course you gave, and you spent the first two weeks explaining the Donchian process, and the remainder weeks proving it to the group.

 

Do you still offer classes like this? Do you still like to mentor people on a more personal basis? Obviously these are both something that I would be interested in, if on further conversing you thought it worth your while?

Well, I will leave you with this, to see what your response is, and would be happy to answer any further questions.

As my protégé you might begin by sending me the source for the apocryphal story about the Donchian Course. 

 

Then you might continue your tutelage by writing a one-page essay on the similarities and differences between prodigy, protégé, probity, property, prophet, profit and pocket.

 

Finally, you might join a Tribe in your neighborhood, or start one.

 

 

A Pocket

can hold more profit

 

if it's open at the top.

 

Clip: http://tubes.ominix.com/art/

decors/denim-patch-pocket.png

Tue, 22 Feb 2005

 

Reasonable Size


Hi Ed,


In your post of Feb 2

 

Ed Says: "A 125-k futures account might be a little thin to support drawdowns, even on
one-lot trading".

 

In your Market Wizards article you said you don't publish your performance with the exception of your model customer account that started with $5K and that traded to several million (don't remember the exact number) over a period of years.

So, given the previous statements, isn't it reasonable to infer that not only is 125K not a little thin, but rather on the obese side

My comments aim to stimulate traders to think carefully about risk control before they start trading.

 

If you have your feeling of loss in a k-not, you might have a high tolerance for drawdowns and you might find a 125-k account obese. 

 

Risky trading might be a good way to trim it down.

 

 

Fat Cats

with poor risk management

 

become skinny cats.

 

 

Clip: http://www.pritchettcartoons.com/

illustration/fatcat.jpg

Mon, 21 Feb 2005

 

George Soros

This is an interesting quote from the son of funny-mental investor George Soros, about why his father changes his mind and market position.

My father will sit down and give you theories to explain why he does this or that. But I remember seeing it as a kid and thinking, Jesus Christ, at least half of this is bullshit. I mean, you know the reason he changes his position on the market or whatever is because his back starts killing him. It has nothing to do with reason. He literally goes into a spasm, and it’s this early warning sign.


I wonder if this is really the case and if it is, does George Soros realize what contributes to his success.

The best source of information about George is, well, George.

 

You might take your feelings about George to a Tribe meeting as an entry point.

 

 

 

George Soros

 

His Quantum Fund accumulates profits in excess of one billion dollars in one week, trading currency, September, 1992. He gives some of it "back" in subsequent trades.

Clip: http://sun.tsu.ru/win/arhiv/

portrets/politika/soros.jpg

Mon, 21 Feb 2005

 

Beginning Trader

Dear Mr. Seykota,

I've been interested in trading for quite a while but never had any direction from any one individual.

 

What would be your advice for beginning traders; reading material, workshops, how to run a business from home.

I'm not looking for the secrets to Life or making money just some groundwork I can use to get myself going in the right direction. From reading about you in Market Wizards and Trend Following you seem like a no nonsense guy whose direct and to the point ... and most importantly successful at your craft.

Best Wishes!!!

You might try standing in front of a full length mirror.  If you see a trader looking back at you, ask him what to do.

 

If you don't see a trader, carefully note what you do see.

 

A Tribe can be an excellent mirror.

 

You might consider taking your feelings about wanting guidance to a Tribe meeting.

 

 

You Can Get a Pretty Good Sense

about what to do

 

with a little reflection

 

Clip: http://www.alexandertechnique.com

.au/images/Mirror.gif

Mon, 21 Feb 2005

 

Regarding New Incoming Members


A new member attended our regular TTP Session today. After he walks into the
door, first thing I ask is: "What is your understanding of TTP?"

He goes on with his storytelling: "I traded for so and so years. I read Ed Seykota' s Market Wizard interview.  He was the most intriguing and intellectual, etc." The usual introduction.

So I ask again: "What is your understanding of TTP?"

Then our receivers funnel him into getting directly into his current issue: Anger

We ask him again: "What feelings come up in your body while you are angry?"

He says: "My heart starts pounding. My face is flashing red. I want to cry right now!"

So we encourage him to do just that. "Yes do more of that. Turn it up a notch. Make that motion with you hand as if your heart is pounding. Altogether now¡ Cry when you want to. It's OK to do it.  Here we care about you. We care about your feelings, We accept you for who you are. Go ahead."

 

We ask him if he is willing to assume the Hot Seat, He says, "YES!"

All this happens within 2 minutes of this person entering our door. We did not ask any question where he is from, what his name is, where do you work - the usual small talk which is of little relevance to doing real work in TTP.

So then he gets on the Hot Seat and amazingly goes into his forms immediately. We encourage him to do more of it.

 

Although he went into analyzing and sidestepped a few times, we encourage him to analyze some more. The analyzing falters and the receivers keep him on track. And then he proceeds back to the main feeling of anger.

He fully experienced his forms from shaking his hands, rocking back and forth, to closing his mouth and sucking his lips outside in as if his lungs are sucking all the air outside and a vacuum formed. I receive that he almost wants to cry and he claims it as well so we encourage him to "almost cry" and keep doing more of it.

We tell him to, "Really close your mouth as how you are doing it now and block things that you want to come out. Really hold it inside you and at all costs do not let it come out. Yes hold it inside and almost cry too. YES!!!"


Then - he bursts out laughing - coming from a point where he almost cries.

After our session and during checkout, this new member makes an insightful observation. He says: looking back, it was very beneficial that we funneled him into going into the Hot Seat seat RIGHT AWAY without any types of discussion or the other experienced members going first before him so he can see for himself a demonstration. He said going first without any premonitions or having any ideas of how it works from the other members turned out beneficial for him as he didn't get scared or freaked out by us or he didn't have any ideas of what he should do during TTP as how we do it.

 

He experienced his own "signature form" as naturally as it feels for him at the time. It is also good that the receivers knew exactly how to funnel him directly into his somatic feelings without dilly-dallying around.

I feel the same way from previous experience with new members coming in.
Before, new members come in our Tribe and the Tribe conductor during the session demonstrates first so new members see how its supposed to be. We feel that the experienced members going first to demonstrate is an inferior way to go about introducing the process as the new member might carry new judgments about TTP without experiencing it firsthand for himself. He might have thoughts of Oh, I'm supposed to act like an ape and go crazy.¨ Albeit that's not his signature form. So we feel it is optimal if new members go first.

I don't know, this is just an observation, but I feel that this may be a better approach?

Ed, I remember when you pollinated that you went last and let us do our TTP first and you took notes as you let us do our Process without you interfering until the end of the session. How do you feel about this
approach for new members?

I maybe using this as a reason why others never came back for a 2nd session as they either freaked out from seeing us going ape crazy.

 

Usually after previous new members see our demonstration and take their turn in the Hot Seat, they just sit there and meditate although we fully encourage them to do that but we know that is complete BS.

Maybe it worked just for this particular person who is willing to do real work.

 

I guess its either people are willing to do THE real work or just weed themselves out naturally. As usual, I don't know.

You seem to have a good handle on TTP and how to track a sender.

 

If you have a k-not about people freaking out and quitting, Fred sets up situations in which you can experience it. 

 

One way to get people to come back might be for you to work on your own feelings about them not returning.

 

 

 

In TTP and in life, clear agreements support long-lasting relationships.

 

Clip: http://www.otoons.com/

eso/East&West.htm

 

Mon, 21 Feb 2005

 

Testimonial for Book


Trading can be a tough and lonely road. So having a mentor and guide, especially one so spectacularly credentialed as Ed Seykota, is a rare gift.

 

Like most traders, I mistakenly believed that finding the right system was the be all and end all of success. But I have learned through Ed's web site and his other writings that the secret lies within - that one needs to address and embrace all the deep-rooted feelings that lie waiting to sabotage us if we neglect them.

 

Attention must be paid. Thanks to Ed's generous advice, I am now far more able to stay in the moment of now, and to recognize and control the feelings that once ambushed my decision making.

 

That means that the greed that pushed my risk taking to dangerous levels is now under control (but under constant watch!) and I can now view drawdowns dispassionately, without the ritual hair-tearing of earlier times.

 

But I have won an even bigger pay-off: my life in general, not just my trading, is infinitely more enjoyable and successful because of these same techniques and realizations.

 

Thanks Ed - as you say, everyone really does get what they want out of the markets, and of life.

Yes.