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Ed visits J.W. Forrester

Concord, MA, June 8, 2013

Contributors Say Ed Says

June 10, 2013

Reunion with Teacher

Dear Ed,

Thank you for sharing your picture with Prof. Forrester. As I see it, I feel moved and experience joy and gratitude. I can imagine the moment of the reunion with your teacher, after so many years. And hope that I can also visit you and express you personally my gratitude, some 30 or 40 years from now :-)

With best regards,

Thank you for sharing your wish to meet up in 30 or 40 years.

As I grow older and reflect on the matter, I come to see my job as carrying the flame from my teachers to my students.

Milton Erickson

June 10, 2013

How To Get Information Without Asking Questions

Dear Ed,

I need some clarity. Pl provide when convenient.

You state in June 10, 2013 Ambiguity and Questions:

Ed Says: You might also like to consider that a question conveys a demand for information (control-centric model) whereas sharing forms conveys vulnerability (intimacy-centric model).

My query: While we all are learning from you how do we convey our queries? Can they be in some forms - feelings or we need to ask questions? How do we get clarity - views from you?

Yours is a very unique type of method. It takes time to adjust n understand it. However expressing feelings, feeling feelings and having intimacy centric relationship is working beautifully for me and thanks a lot for that.

Thank you for sharing your process.

In the intimacy-centric model we obtain information by respecting the other person's sovereignty, by letting the other person know our situation and by testing to determine the other person's willingness to engage.

In the control-centric model, we simply demand information.

In TTP, we aim to create a supportive environment and a healing field of acknowledgment and generally prefer the intimacy-centric model. One exception occurs when the client wishes to role-play through some control-centric issues and the role players purposefully demand answers.

The choice of language does not seem to matter as much as the intention to establish rapport.

The Way You Say It
conveys your intention

as much as the words you use.

June 10, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report

Dear Ed,

Our Tribe has been practicing the hot-seat experience for a number of years now and I have found release through it many times. There have also been times when I haven't - yet enjoyed the 'physical workout' anyway. Although I have new forms from time to time, certain forms perpetuate. This could be evidence of the 'TTP dependency' you indicated in a recent post.

I am very much intrigued by the idea of freezing a form to amplify the feeling so that the hot-seat can embrace a critical incident. However since the process manager also tries to avoid giving "'analysis and advice," and thereby becoming an actor in the play, I wonder: (1) how the he / she decides when to call a freeze-point (which like analysis and advice is also intrusive no?) and (2) how / when to go back to the hot-seat after this freeze-point?


Thank you for sharing your process and for raising the issue of Process Manager intervention.

You can learn to conduct the Rocks Process, including how to detect the freeze-point, with practice. You might consider visiting another Tribe that uses the Rocks Process to see it in action.

Freeze-Points, Like Orgasms

get easier to identify
with a little practice.

June 10, 2013

Ambiguity and Questions

Ed says, "Questions contain inherent ambiguities, that require contextual information to resolve." (FAQ, June 8, 2013, More on Questions)

I have read the Trading Tribe book and I understand the ambiguity of the Time question you cite as an example.

However, I wonder if you have considered that the ambiguity may not be in the question itself, but rather, in language?

For example, even if I am sharing feelings, "I feel hot." Without context, it could mean,

a) I feel hot after running outdoor for an hour under the sun,
b) I feel hot as in I am really mad and upset at someone,
c) I feel hot like a sexy super model (as in, Paris Hilton's catch phrase),
d) I feel hot as in I am very excited.

I wonder, if it is possible that the ambiguity has less to do with questions, but more to do with a lack of proper context.

Thank you for sharing your process and for wondering about ambiguity in sharing feelings and in questions.

In both types of communication, questions and sharing feelings, additional contextual information helps to resolve the ambiguity. In both cases the sender provides the clarifying context most effectively by sharing his feelings and forms.

You might also like to consider that a question conveys a demand for information (control-centric model) whereas sharing forms conveys vulnerability (intimacy-centric model).

An Angry Guy
comes across very differently

if he screams:

(A) I feel heat in my forehead.

(B) What in the world did you do?

June 10, 2013

The TTP Tool Kit

Hi Ed,

First of all, GREAT picture of you and Professor Forrester. I love it, thanks for sharing!!!!

Also, thanks for the clarification between Zero Point and Freeze Point in recent FAQs. It seems that you are advocating shifting TTP more towards Freeze Point (for the Rock Process) from the Zero Point (for traditional TTP).

I wonder what your take is on the Hardball Process. My understanding of it is that it is a process by which the sender intentionally experiences all the feelings that stand between him and his Snapshots, until the point where nothing stands between them.

If that is the case, I suppose that is more like Zero Point than Freeze Point. If so, I wonder if you have observed "Zero Point side effects" from the Hardball Process (e.g. dependency relationship with it like a drug), and if you can share with us more about the Hardball Process in general as that is what our Tribe is planning to work on in the next few sessions.


Thank you for sharing your process and for raising the issue of using the the zero point and freeze point in various processes.

I use "going to the zero point" as a demonstration for people new to the work, to show how feelings and their associating forms typically and naturally change and then disappear when you experience them and / or communicate them.

In case a form keeps re-appearing, you might have a k-not consisting of a form plus a judgment about that form - that prevents you from experiencing it. In this case, experiencing the judgment first may facilitate experiencing the associating form.

In case a form still persists, you might have one or another rocks that associate forms with behavior patterns that shut down the client, preventing experiencing and communication. In this case, we use the Rocks Process to identify and forgive the rocks, and to accept and practice implementing a new pro-active rock that includes sending and receiving forms and feelings.

In case a form still persists after all that, we acknowledge the the issue likely lies outside the scope of the TTP tool kit.

June 10, 2013

Pollinator Report: Freezing at the Peak

Dear Ed,

I visit [city] tribe. The Chief invites me to act as Process Manager ("PM"). I feel fear and doubt. I agree to accept the role.

I manage the first hot seat ("HS"). As HS begins, my vision becomes blurry. In a moment I accept the feelings, possibly relating to me not being good enough, my vision clears, I feel confidence and am able to continue.

The subject goes through several cycles of feeling. At what feels like near a peak state, I ask him to freeze and recall a time as a child when he feels this way. He shares several intense memories, none of which indicate a role model passing on medicinal response patterns. After several cycles of ebbing and flowing intensity on the HS, he reports clarity and insight, and wants to move on.

I manage the second HS, which morphs into a rocks process.

With cheering and encouragement from the group, HS approaches the zero point several times and seems to go back. It's a delicate art to encourage HS to get close to, and not beyond, the zero point. When I feel he's close to zero, I ask him to describe his physical feeling in size, shape, temperature, and location detail. After his description, I say "allow a memory to come of very early in your childhood when you feel this way". I know I'm activating a part of his mind that allows thinking and communication, and I feel I must be delicate so I do not break his state.

I find it challenging to discover a key event - HS describes several events, which are very intense - I feel these events show signs of a rock already in place. The Tribe supports him to go further. He describes a large rock in his head and bumps on the back of his neck. He reveals a memory that associates with these feelings. He is five years old and is struck by a parent with a stick. I feel we discover a key event.

During role-playing, it feels as if I am witnessing the violence first hand. Automatically the actors fall into very convincing roles. My a-ha is a deeper understanding of the intense confusion and fear a child feels during a violent outburst, and how, in desperation for survival, the child grabs on to whatever resources are available to him. I feel my tears spring up.

Upon reflecting on my role as PM, I am happy I use frequent willingness testing along the way, and I feel we achieve important parts of the rocks process: HS identifies a medicinal response pattern, HS rejects sole reliance on medicinal responses then accepts pro-active responses, and HS links new pro-active responses in a deep, emotional state.

I thank the members of the tribe for their courage on the hot seat, wonderful work as actors, their willingness to work with full commitment, and their willingness to accept my visit and role as PM.

Thank you for sharing your process as pollinator - and for raising the issue of when to freeze a form.

You might consider freezing the form when it approaches full intensity.

If you wait for the zero point, your client might not have enough juice left to associate a critical incident.

Also, if you take people all the way to the zero point, they generally notice their upset disappears; they may come to frame TTP as a drug - and form a dependency relationship with it. This may lead to the development of "signature forms."

In the Rocks Process

the Process Manager
assists the client to freeze the form
at its peak.

Illustration by EAS, June 10, 2013

June 9, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Amazing Synchronicity

Hello Ed:

I really appreciate you creating another Austin Tribe and am looking forward to working with our group. My goal is to be able to surf by the time the series ends. Surfing has been a lifelong goal of mine, but I have never pursued it seriously. The few times I tried it, I have failed miserably. I have logical excuses - I weigh too much, my upper body strength is not enough, etc, etc.

On my flight to Austin a guy sits next to me and we are in amazing sync immediately. We find amazing coincides. We both bought wet suits on Friday the prior week. He tells me what he eats for breakfast - oatmeal, chia seeds, etc and its almost the same breakfast that I had invented. A week later we meet for lunch and we both find out this is the first time we have had lunch with a person we met on a plane!

He tells me that he has not surfed for 10 years but he is starting again and he started driving to Santa Cruz and surfs at sunrise. At that time, my plan is to loose weight get stronger and then surf, but things are not going in the right direction. A week later I have a aha moment - I can do the same thing, drive to Santa Cruz and surf. Even if I can't get up, I will loose weight and I will be exercising at 5:00 am.

The Austin tribe meets - I have worked with most of the tribe before and I notice how much at ease we are with each other. I feel warm and connected and am happy to be part of the group.

During the first rock process - the participant realizes how he was impacted by his mothers embarrassment, when he interrupted his mother having sex with her boyfriend. It resulted in him sabotaging his relationships with women and experiencing embarrassment. I suddenly realize, its my story - I too sabotage my relationships with women - and I remember hearing my father begging for sex in an embarrassing way.

In the next process - a tribe member works in escalated customer service and experiences bad feelings. His mother convinced him to do accounting instead of marketing. I remember my mother trying to convince be to become an accountant, but I wind up doing marketing. Then I suddenly feel empathy for customer service people. I realize that my step daughter headed customer service for my company and the priorities I set - resulted in constant difficulty for customer service and her. After the meeting, I apologize to her. I feel remorse for what I did to our employees in customer service.

The statistical probabilities of this being random events are infinitesimal. I wonder about the model of reality. I feel that there is some level of orchestration going on that I am unaware of.

Ed says that his life works better when he hosts the Tribe. I wonder about this too and the model. Something is missing and I am excited about discovering it as we go along.

Thank you for sharing your process.


in synchronizing their motions

confirm participation
in something larger.

June 9, 2013

Willingness Challenge and Promise


according to your email of 28th of May "Father, Son and Computer Games", in TTP meaning, what is the difference between a willingness challenge and a promise??

Do you mean that in TTP we don't make any promise to others??

I feel that promise is more in the non-existing future whereas a challenge is more a process in the now but I would appreciate more your precisions.

Thank you Great Chief.

Thank you for raising these issues.

In TTP we test or "challenge" the guy on the hot seat frequently for willingness - to confirm he wants to continue moving forward. Otherwise, we risk getting into a codependent game with him in which we try to "fix" him while he resists.

In TTP, a "promise," like everything else, exists only in the now. You either have a promise in the now or you don't have it in the now. If you have it, you have an agreement for something to happen when something else happens. Example: you might have a promise to see someone when the clock strikes twelve. A promise differs from an agreement in that it emphasizes a performance guarantee - typically to compensate for a history of failure to perform.

Strong Promises

typically involve ceremony
and tokens of assurance

and have a relatively high
failure rate.

June 9, 2013

Wants to Apologize for Questions

Dear Ed,

It is four o clock in the morning in India. I read your 8th June 2013 reply to my email in the late evening. I saw myself procrastinating to send you my apologies. I can not go to sleep without conveying my sorry. So I get up from bed and send u my previous email. I now feel good and so can sleep peacefully fully aware that in case if I have made a mistake in my emails to Ed, he will forgive me.

Thanks again Ed.

Thank you for sharing your process.

FAQ provides a forum for people to share issues and insights about TTP and their journeys toward personal freedom.

Your willingness to raise the issue of questions provides a clarifying example to many who have the same issue. People who employ the control-centric model typically use questions to demand answers, humiliating others without revealing their own vulnerabilities.

You might consider taking your feelings about <having to answer> to Tribe.

Control-Centric Behavior
passes down the line

through violent behavior,
and by demanding others
to answer to them.

June 9, 2013 3:12 PM

More on Questions

Dear Ed,

Sorry is the first word I prefer to put for this email if my manner or approach has not been proper in any of my emails.

I refer about June 8, 2013 Questions post and your reply.

Ed says: You Communicate Your Intention for a relationship by your manner of your approach.

It seems that in my enthusiasm to send questions fast I may have missed out something. My manners may not have appeared to to be proper to Ed.

Of course It does not seem to have anything about my education in non English medium school.

I rephrase my words and resend the list. I have this feeling that Ed's replies will benefit many who visit his site regularly. I thank Ed in case if he relies

Thank you for sharing your process.

In TTP we share our situation and our wonder rather than ask questions. Questions contain inherent ambiguities, that require contextual information to resolve. Sharing feelings and wonder frames the inquiry as a personal issue, giving the other person some idea of how to provide you with appropriate information. For example:

Q: Do you have the time?

A1: About 4:45, by my phone.
A2: No, maybe later.
A3: About 15 seconds, by my stopwatch.
A4: Sure baby, I can get away during lunch.
A5: No, I have to go back to L.A. tomorrow.

Hey Baby,
do you have the time?

Uh, yeah, about 4:45 by my phone.

June 9, 2013

More on Intentional Vomiting

Hi Chief,

I am thinking of your posting on this thread. I try to think whether there's any one or situation I want to rid of. It's not my family, or friend or job, I already quit the job I don't like and I still have the feeling of vomit. Eventually I come to my trading performance, my health and generally myself. When I feel my feeling about myself, I find clearly I don't love myself that much, and this is a long situation since my childhood.

I believe that it is a good entry for my Rocks Process to uncover the events which forms my Rocks of self hatred or dismissal, together with the Rock of Confrontation. Or maybe they are even related.

We a planning a new session and I am coordinating the schedule with the members who sign up for this session. I can work on this in the meetings.


Thank you for sharing your process.

Let me know what comes up.

June 9, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Insights About The Rocks Process

Dear Ed,

I am making observations that incorporate what is called the "Wise Mind", that is, the intersection of emotions and thoughts. I believe that TTP is based in the notion that it is possible to fully experience feelings and to allow them to guide us in processing, or integrating, our emotions into our conscious behavior.

At our Tribe meeting, one member wishes to work on feelings of embarrassment that inhibit him in his social and work relationships. He reports feeling hot in his face and sweating.

He is willing to amplify these feelings with the encouragement of the Tribe. As he does, the tension in his body increases, his hands are clenched and his face contorts with what I would describe as frustration and anger.

Finally Ed asks him to freeze and open his mind to an earlier memory evoked by these feelings. I would describe this as helping him to shift into his Wise Mind, since he needs to hold the feelings while also scanning his mind for a memory.

I will leave the description of his work with this memory to him. My observation of the Rocks Process that ensued leaves me with some ideas as to how the process actually works (my training and practice as a psychologist, as well as my personality, lead me to be curious and comforted about "figuring things out").

I believe the Rocks Process may be quite effective, though any lasting effects remain to be seen on follow-up with the two members who went through it. I believe it concretizes the emotional processes of internalization and translates passively experienced feelings into deliberately chosen actions. The "forgiving" of the rock back to the Donor is the best example of this.

I believe the addition of the concept of actual protective intent on the part of the Rock Donors may be very crucial to the developmental concept of individuation, in which the child is able to separate without having to defy or repudiate the parents. This may allow integration of a more benign view of the parents that can make the separation less wrenching and extreme or uni-directional.

The member I am describing ended his process feeling happy and tolerant of the shortcomings of his parents. This, to me, is so important in being able to release dysfunctional patterns.

If the patterns don't have to function as a way of keeping us attached (albeit unhappily) to our parents, then we can see our parents in a healthier light that does not require us to be either angry at or submissive to them.

In other words, we can grow up, stop walking around with them and their rocks in our pockets, yet still feel connected and possibly appreciate them as doing the best they could.

I am excited by the prospect of experiencing the Rocks Process first-hand. I already am better able to help my patients get into their feelings than ever before.

Thank you for sharing your process and your insights.

You might consider taking your feelings about <wanting to figure it out> to Tribe.

Conventional Therapy Requires
a therapist with considerable skills
as an analyst and advisor.

TTP requires
a process manager
willing to avoid providing
analysis and advice.

June 9, 2013

Supports Son in Making Decisions

Dear Ed,

Your reply of May 28, 2013 about learning to say NO.

Just realized that many independent directors on the BOD of listed companies have this motto: Whose bread I eat his songs I sing.

They do not learn to say NO even to foolish decisions and Diversification (Peter Lynch). They maintain Yes Sir attitudes. The MD gets what he wants. So he surrounds him self with only such people. Self serving biases. Ed is right. Everybody gets what they want.

My son today suddenly asks me " So! What does Ed advice nowadays?"

I tell him about your May 22, 2013 post :

The Best Gift to Your Child is to refrain from making him have to choose.

He feels good that I allowed him to take his own decision.

Ed is changing the lives of many whom he has not even met. May his Tribe increase.

Saw your picture with your daughter. My best wishes to her also.


Thank you for sharing your process and for working to increase freedom on the planet and particularly within your family.

June 9, 2013

Rocks as Metaphors

Hello Ed,

Right now, I am aware of a strong urge to apologize for "taking up too much space" or "overdoing it" as I write yet another contribution to FAQ. I am eager and happy to know that I will be exploring those parental injunctions in the course of my Tribe participation, so that is the last I will say about it as a disclaimer to you.

I am excited to continue to share my reactions to the Rocks Process as it occurred in the first Austin Tribe meeting. My thoughts today center on the actual rocks themselves, as we used them in the role-playing.

As we reach the part of the role-play in which the Rock Donor gives the rock to the child, we look around the room to grab something that could symbolize the Rock. Objects are chosen based on size; one is actually a drink coaster made out of polished rock, and all basically can be held in the hand.

When we arrive at the forgiving of the Rocks back to the Donors, we look around for an item to represent the new "proactive" Rock that symbolizes the choice of healthier and more intimacy-centric strategies for responding to the Donor.

In a serendipitous choice, Chief Ed picks up a heart-shaped, gold-colored metal object (I think it was a small box or perhaps a paperweight), saying, "This is a very special rock." From somewhere (I don't remember who says it first) comes the idea that it represents the Tribe and their feelings of support and love.

Both members who enact the Rocks Process express feelings of affection for, and wanting to keep, that particular Rock. As the Donors urge them to take back the old Rocks, it feels like there is no way either of the two members will give up that Rock!

I think that characterizing the new Rock as representing the connection to the Tribe, and the emotional validation the Tribe represents, may be even more effective than simply describing the Rock as pro-actively endowed with positive strategies and forms of communication (as I have understood the process to be prior to this experience).

The fact that this particular Rock was heart-shaped and gently rounded may have influenced the feelings to a degree. I notice that whoever has the rock would stroke it and hold it gently in his hand like a cherished keepsake. The old Rocks have sharper edges and are not as easy to hold in the hand or fit in the pocket. An accident? You decide.

In my work with people wanting to change behaviors, I find that the use of props can be extremely valuable. Whether the prop is something that is touched, seen, heard, smelled or tasted, it offers a concrete reminder of the emotional commitment that has been associated with it.

As I walk around an arts festival last night, I am drawn to a small, beautiful wooden box with a tiny, heart-shaped drawer cut into it. The craftsman has many of them, made out of many different types of wood. They are exquisite and cost very little. As I choose one and hold it in my hand, I see myself bringing it with me to my next Tribe meeting and volunteering it as one of the "Tribal Rocks" in the next Rocks Process.

See you then!

Thank you for noticing your "taking up space" rock and pressing through regardless. Thank you for your observations and insights on the metaphorical importance of the rock token.

TTP represents the application of feedback dynamics and systems thinking to the art and science of freeing people from the limitations of their own patterns. The work benefits greatly from experimentation and new insights and from reports such as yours. Thank you for helping to extend the work.

We Can Run Tests to Determine

if size matters.




June 8, 2013


Dear Ed,

Thanks a lot for your replies. They help me become a better person.

I send one email on 19th May 2013. Feeling curious in the present moment of now whether Ed is likely to reply in the non existent future. So I again forward it to Ed. He may consider replying to those questions.

Thanks Ed for the replies.

Regarding the interview comment, I am sending you questions. You may or may not consider them as Interview questions. It's your choice. When the person is ready for the interview, questions do appear.


Here come few to start with:

1. Many times due to circumstances, people just forget to play their own music. Why and how does it happen? Is it similar to boiling frog theory?

2. On FAQ, your replies many sometimes are very sharp and to the point. The inner voice to many is Hey! Do not ask Ed if you do not like his answers! In what ways has reading contributor's post and then replying to them after thoroughly understanding their views and feelings helped you in a personal way in your life?

3. When do you start realizing that Everybody gets what they want? In what ways is that helping you in becoming a better person and a better trader?

4. From my point of view the best sentences from you that provoked a lot of soul thinking are Everybody gets what they want and feelings that we do not feel run our life. Which of Ed's sentences do you feel are very important from your point of views? There are no curious restrictions as to the number of favored sentences.

5. What are your best habits? I hope you are glad that I do not ask you about your worst habits because of the fear that you might ask me the same question.

6. How have you evolved as a person and as a trader after starting TT and FAQ?

7. Due to your TT, you come across many successful traders. What are the common characteristics of highly successful traders? Michael Marcus has praised you a lot. What are the traits that he appreciates most in you? (You might tell me to ask this question to him but I do not have his email)

8. You say that becoming a better person and becoming a better trader goes together. How does and why does this happen? Pl elaborate.

9. After reading your FAQ of one year 2003 (I am slow) over a period of one year I come to realize that you are a very different person. Is it a fact that as a person and as a trader you are vastly different in many ways compared to other Market Wizards? Do you like and want us to know the difference?

10.Out of many questions that Jack asked, which ones do you feel are the best?

11. FAQ has opened up my eyes in many ways. In what ways feeling better and becoming a better person and trader go together? Your views please.

12. If a selfless person feels that he is good at grasping and not good at teaching or explaining, what rocks could he be carrying?

13. Warren Buffett has said that he is a better investor because he is a businessman and better businessman because he is an investor. In what ways has your trading helped you to become a better person? Has it made you humble?

14. If you had an opportunity to go back in time, how do you behave differently, in life and in trading?

15. It is better to be out of trouble than to get out of trouble. What do you follow that keeps you out of trouble, in life and in trading?

16. What is the best way to handle the personal crisis? You might say that the best way to handle them is not to have them in the first place, but seriously your views please as I am sure your reply will benefit many.

17. If you are given the opportunity to open a school of Life, which topics - which subjects do you prefer to choose so that children of tomorrow earn the Right Livelihood? Please do not tell that let that opportunity come first!

18. Who is Ed as a person and as a trader in the present moment?

19. Taking good care of myself and paying attention to what I feel makes me a better person and a better decision maker. What has brought your attention to the feelings part of humans life? How do you get interested in understanding feelings aspect?

20. In what ways does fully experiencing feelings and taking their positive intentions helps you become a better person?

21. I feel thirsty and paying attention to that feeling while typing these questions, I take pro active steps and immediately grab watermelon juice glass. I feel happy and my body feels hydrated. Is life really that simple? If we really pay attention to our feelings can we avoid lots of dramas?

22. In what ways do you evolve as a person in last many years? Please share your journey.

23. Your replies on FAQs help many. How do you benefit? How do you evolve from your replies? Since there is no monetary consideration, how does it feel when you are helping others and healing them? What helps and motivates you to continue sharing your thoughts?

24. Life is a feeling experience. Life is an emotional experience. Your views please.

25. You prefer to be in the present moment of now and advice us to use SVO -p style. How does this help in thinking clearly? It many times confuses me a lot while communicating with you. Does SVO - p style help us to connect to the feeling very fast and thus bring in better clarity?

26. Car that you prefer is not the car that I might prefer. Everybody's style and personalities are different. Your life journey is different from others. Then how come your replies are so clear to many of us?

27. Your current views on control centric and intimacy centric relationship.

28. What are the best few questions that you have ever been asked and what are your replies?

Thank you so much.

Thank you for asking 28 probing questions and avoiding reporting any of your feelings.

I wonder how this approach works for you in your relationships with others.


You Communicate Your Intention
for a relationship

by your manner of your approach.


June 7, 2013

Desperation for Money


Since I live in Baltic state and I don't have possibility to visit TT, I am directing here (sorry about my grammar, I am not English).

My experience and my overall results could are mixed. From one side: from very beginning in my trading career I told myself, that in my first years of trading I will make all possible mistakes and will gain enough experience (everyone gets what they want out of markets), to build solid foundation to make profitable trading strategy and will be consistent winner thereafter (and avoid e.g. Jesse Livermore experience).

I got what I wanted – in almost 2 years since I am trading my portfolio is fluctuating between losing and break even, but in this time I have gained considerable knowledge and experience – I have managed to adapt many important trading principles in my strategy and my mistakes (violating my strategy rules) are constantly falling.

If I am looking trough my trade journal, strategy setups and journal of my emotions and viewpoint about trading and my own psychology – I am consistently improving as trader.

But at same time a am concluding, that despite considerable time, determination and will which I have been given to be successful I have not been profitable.

Right now my system are producing to many signals relative to my profitability ratio (under 20%) and I don't have that much huge Reward trades so my system has serious flaws and it is far to volatile.

With my previous account (which went broke) problem was – too big bet size and to aggressive pyramiding. After I analyzed all my deals in my first account I concluded that if I would risk less and pyramid much more conservative my system would be profitable.

But now I am risking much less (around 1% per trade) and still I have some serious flaws. From these mistakes I am thinking that my main problem is desperation for money and if I won't be dealing with this problem directly it will make me do new but different mistakes and results will be same.

Since my results are reflection of my goals, in my research of my problems one of main reasons for my unprofitable result could be my desperate need for money. I had read many stories about that problem (in Market Wizards series, in Reminiscences of Stock Operator and in your FAQ index I read very good Chinese proverb about archer).

1) Does that meant that I have to work to my desperate need for money (psychological problem) and causes for that, because if I don't deal with it (and other psychological issues) I will continue to make mistakes based on this (and other) problem?

Does this conclusion aren't reaffirming fact that most important aspect for trading is psychology, because based on psychology trader is making its strategy and successfully (or unsuccessfully) sticking to it?

2) If my goal is to firstly to be consistent winner and then make money on consistent basis (in my opinion it is strategy which has volatility and profitability that matches traders goals and character, and trader is consistently sticking to it), than only way how to know whether I am consistent trader is that I am consistently making money? And if I am not consistently making money I am not consistent trader yet?

If I am looking to my life in general, for last 5 years (since I was 17 and understand that I want to relate my life with business in financial markets) my dream job, most perspective business and intellectual pleasure has been trading and financial markets.

When I am thinking abut myself and what I would to if I would be living in different place or different time I am always catching myself that I am relating myself to trading / investing / financial markets / speculation in one or another way, in every time and every place I am searching some business which is related to these fields.

Basically it is only place in which somehow my personality, my goals, my way of thinking has come together in one place. Somehow there have been various events which happened as they happened and they gave my very important experience (I am understanding it only now) and they moved me closer to my goal – to be constantly profitable professional trader and money manager.

I there have been various very interesting coincidences which putted my in place where I had to rise money for trading and I was basically forced to analyze myself to develop myself to be better trader (I couldn't find job in financial field and only way for me was to learn trading principles, but now I know if I had found job I would be analyst or some other professional and probably wouldn't bother to learn more about trading).

But since I have not been profitable I am in unknown zone – life had move me closer to my goal but I haven't reached it. Yet. I wonder how much it is connected to my previous questions.

Best regards

Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your feelings of <desperation> to Tribe to discover more about your relationship dynamics and, in particular, your desperation rock donors.

like other intense feelings

typically requires intentional setup.

June 7, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Measuring Measuring


We begin our tribe meeting and it feels warm and welcoming to be back in a group that wants to make positive changes.

During the first process hotseat (HS) explains his situation of feeling embarrassed and uncomfortable in certain situations. You ask many questions to gain an understanding of what is going on. I notice the tribe is also asking questions and has very good insights on what is happening.

I very much appreciate being around a group that is focused on helping others make changes in their lives. My biggest aha was it is amazing how one incident that causes the HS's mother to be embarrassed teaches the HS to be embarrassed in similar situations. I am amazed the power an incident can have on the rest of a person's life.

The second process involved the HS taking personally when customers would call in irate about the service when it was no fault of the HS. His job was to manage or fix the situation and get a positive outcome for the customer. During process it becomes clear that the customers sometimes act similarly like his mom did growing up causing him to shut down and feel poorly about the situation.

During process the HS is able to forgive the medicinal rock back to the donor and receives a new rock from the tribe that the HS can use to give themselves a more positive outcome.

We are using a slightly different role-play process than I remember in the past and I feel strongly that it is a very good way to make the changes quickly.

We also began another process where it became clear I worry about not 'measuring up' in my life. Not being good enough or the worry about that has limited me in immeasurable ways.

The night was late and Ed asks me to try something new, he requests and asks for my willingness to measure myself with a tape measure in practically every way. I agree. I measure a few things about myself quickly but don't write them down.

I notice hesitancy to complying with the agreement we have made. I wonder why I don't do this simple task. I easily find many other things to do instead of measuring something on me each day.

While writing this note to FAQ, I find a commitment inside myself to follow up with the agreement as I realize with my strong feeling of not doing the measuring we are likely on the right path to changing this emotion.

Thank you for sharing your process.


What You Measure

tends to improve.


June 7, 2011

Working With Fear and Expectations

Dear Ed,

Thank you for re-starting FAQ.

There is so much to share with you and the FAQ community - I don't know where to start.

I feel strongly connected to the feelings shared by the contributor from June 3 who tells us about the fear of taking the plunge - "I LEAP, my arms outstretched and the wind in my face. My life is too precious to hold back from experiences. I am in free fall" (Austin Tribe Meeting - Working Through Embarrassment).

In 2009 I attend a Workshop in Reno and commit to following my Big Wave. The next year I quit my day job and devote myself full-time to developing my system. This takes almost 1.5 years.

I then start marketing my system in an effort to raise seed capital. This takes much longer than I anticipate. There are numerous times I feel despair and dejection. With the support of my wife I feel these feelings deeply and my up-and-down journey continues.

All the while my heart's desire is to find an investor who shares my core values. Lo and behold an investor approaches me who seems to closely match the ideal I hold in my heart.

Almost 1 year passes as our conversation and due-diligence work continues. In April this year they make a verbal commitment to fund me. Last week they send me the draft Shareholder's Agreement and the Investment Management Agreement as well as other important contracts that form the basis of our prospective joint venture.

One of the inputs into the contract is a section on risk rules. And I commit to writing this section in a manner that is completely in line with my system and which manages expectations of the investors correctly.

I feel scared. I feel stressed. I feel as if I move too slowly. I feel old. I feel successful people are already multi-millionaires by the time they reach my age. I am broke and at the start of what feels like a scary journey. I feel rushed. I feel the fear of not meeting expectations.

Thank you for helping me along the way.

Warm regards

Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your feelings about <meeting expectations> to Tribe to identify your expectation rock donor - and to further investigate the dynamics of your dealing with expectations.


can impose expectations
on their children

or assist them
in discovering their own.


June 7, 2013

Anchor Tags

Dear Ed,

I wonder if you might consider using named-anchor tags for all links in all Tweets posted to Twitter, similar to this one ...

This Tweet:

...contains this link, with the named-anchor #Dream, and leads directly to the referenced text:

Kind Regards,

Thank you for the tweet tip.

1. Click here to go visit Twitter.

2. Click on the Anchor Tag tweet to return here.

3. Go to step one.

4. Compilation Error: you cannot reach this code from above.

June 6, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Embarrassment and Shyness

Hi Ed,

Thanks for hosting the Austin tribe meeting. I am happy to be part of it.

I want to share that I have difficulty focusing and writing this report. I try to write a few lines each day.

During the last meeting, I volunteer to take to the hot seat. I work on my issues about embarrassment, shyness and looking down. I share with the tribe an event with a woman when I feel embarrassment and I look down.

I quickly start to feel hotness in my face. Ed asks me to make the feeling stronger. I intensify it. I also start to develop forms with my hands and lips. The tribe encourages me to go with the forms. Then, Ed asks me to crank them up and to freeze the forms. After freezing the forms, Ed asks me to recall a time when I feel like this. After a few seconds, I start to recall an event. I recall a time when I hear my mom moaning while having sex with her boyfriend.

My parents are divorced. I live with my mother and sister. I am 6 or 7 years old. Suddenly, my mother brings a boyfriend to live in the house. On day, in the middle of the night, I hear a person moaning. I get out of my bed and I walk toward my mother's bedroom. I realize that my mother is the one moaning. I return to my room and I fall sleep.

We role play this part of the event. A tribe member role plays my role. Other tribe members role play my mother, her boyfriend and my father. I just observe. I start to recall more details about the event.

I recall that I see my father a few days later and I share the story with him. He still has feelings toward my mom. He tells me that the next time I hear the noises, that I call my mother or knock her door. I am my father's agent to interrupt my mother when she is having sex with her boyfriend. I also hope that someday my parents might get together again. I am willing to do what my father asks me. We are buddies.

The next time I hear my mother moaning, I get out of my bed and I walk toward her bedroom. I call her a few times so she is aware that I am outside her bedroom. She comes out of her bedroom. She is embarrassed. She does not what to say. She walks me to my bedroom and helps me to fall sleep again.

We role play the complete event this time.

Next, I take over my role. We role play the event and I receive rocks from parents. First, I receive an "interrupter" rock from father. (Later in the process, I recall being in the middle of my parents many times. Sometimes, they even ask me directly to choose between them. I recall not knowing which way to go. My father implicitly is also asking me to be on his side). Second, after I interrupt my mother, I receive an embarrassment / look down rock from her. I feel comfortable holding each rock with my hands. Ed asks me to try to put them down on the floor. I hesitate for a moment. I finally put them on the floor. I feel a weird sensation or feeling. A tribe member asks me if I feel naked. He is right, I feel naked.

We role play one final time. This time, I have the opportunity to forgive the rocks. First, I see my father. I tell him about the noises I hear at night. He tries to send me on the mission and offers me the "interrupter" rock. I forgive the rock to him.

Immediately, another tribe member gives me a rock with proactive responses such as sharing and asking for feelings. I share with my father that "I do not know what to do." I do not like that he is asking me to interrupt my mother. I also express my anger. I tell him that sometimes I am in the middle of them. I feel that one is pulling me to the right and the other one to the left. I basically do not know which way to go or "do not know what to do". (My favorite phrase when I work on career snapshots). My dad tells me that he is sorry for doing this.

Next, my mother offers me the embarrassment / look down rock. I forgive the rock. Immediately, I receive a rock with proactive responses. (Curiously, the pizza delivery guy "interrupts" the process at this point). I share feelings with my mother. I also share that I feel tension in my legs and dryness in my mouth. I am surprised when I tell my mother that she can go back and continue having fun with her boyfriend. At this point, the whole event is just funny.

We complete the process with tribe members checking in their roles. Finally, I release them from their roles.

Earlier on my way to Ed's house, I forget my favorite jacket in a taxi. I rarely forget or lose things. Before the meeting starts, I make a few phone calls to try to find it. We start the meeting and I forget about it. After my process, a tribe member asks me about my jacket. Somehow, I just do not want the jacket back. On my way back to the airport, I feel that I am just carrying what I need and I am returning home lighter.

Since the last meeting, I see myself talking to more people. Last weekend, I attend a speed dating event for the first time. I also purchase an ipod and I find myself enjoying and singing the songs when I walk on the street. I wonder if I previously consider these things too embarrassing.


Thank you or sharing you process. Congratulations on taking your dating and music appreciation to a new level.


A Positive Intention of Shyness

It can help you keep
your natural magnetism
in balance with what you can handle.


June 5, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Working Together

Hi, Ed,

At the Austin tribe meeting I feel excited and nervous.

Then we begin…

A tribe member takes the hotseat and somehow enlists all the other tribe members into his double-rock process. I state it's "his process" and realize it's more accurate to state that "his process" is actually "our process" as all of us are triggered in some way or another and that he is actually breaking the ice for the rest of us to go deeper into our own processes and experience feelings associated with our own rocks.

It seems we are all in this together. It's weird how TTP works. He expresses willingness and gets completion on his process. I can't help but marvel at Ed's process management and the tribe members' role playing.

Every single tribe member actively participates as a process manager or role player in his process, including the member that is newest to TTP, who jumps right in and faces her own issues while engaging in the role playing.

I feel connected through the whole process. I notice a kinder, gentler Ed . . . softer, yet more powerful. I notice a tribe fully committed to the process. I feel immense joy for the tribe member as he gets new resources and rejects the resources that don't work.

Another tribe member goes through his process and gets completion as well. I am moved by his willingness to "get into it." He asks for what he wants and gets it. He helps guide his own process by giving the role players feedback until it feels "real."

Another tribe member begins a process. His issues are shared by at least five of the nine tribe members. We laugh at how weird it is that all of us have similar issues or rather similar things that we want to change.

He begins his process. He doesn't get completion on his process as we honor our agreement to end the meeting at the designated time. He is left to "cook." Ed offers to personally do TTP via phone or FAQ with him during the gap between meetings. We are all left hanging a bit, as that must be what we all want to do.

I feel connected with each member of the tribe. There's something there that I'm not sure how to describe. We seem to share a commitment to deal with our rocks and support others in dealing with theirs to the best of our ability in that moment of now.

We seem to share a feeling of nervousness at exposing ourselves to others in the TTP process. It's a feeling of nervousness that seems to dissipate once we get together and are willing to feel the feelings of nervousness and have the AHA that a fellow tribe member sums up when he states, "I feel nervous about my issues and being here until I realize that everyone else here is just as F'd up as me."

We all share a laugh. We all share a moment. We all share a commitment to support one another. I feel warmth in my chest.

Ed, thank you for opening up your heart and your home.

Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting the Tribe Meeting.

Tribe Members

come together with joy and caring

to nail the guy on the hot seat.


June 4, 2013

Type O


You corrected my spelling of "freefall" into two words. If you search for the term, you will find three spellings: freefall (seems most prevalent), free fall, and free-fall.

Thank you for the catch.

I wonder if you can tell me the date and title of the FAQ item.

June 4, 2013

Intentional Vomiting

Hi Chief,

In the morning when I brush my teeth, I often feel urge to vomit when the tooth brush goes deep back of my mouth.

In the past I usually avoid this when it happens. Now I often go toward that point and stick the brush even deeper and triggers a string of vomit.

The feeling is strong, and it comprise two parts, the first is the contraction, and the second one is the release. Sometime I intentionally follow the trend and add force to the release part.

It brings out a lot mucus, actually from my sinus, and I notice that I might have minor sinusitis. It also triggers the spasm of the stomach and lower back muscle, which also helps to align my back joints and relieve back condition.

It's not something I recommend to others, but it's some new experience by going toward feelings.


Thank you for sharing your process.

I wonder if you have some situation or relationship you might like to rid from your life.



may indicate a desire
to rid yourself
of something or someone.


June 3, 2013

Trading Tribe Process (TTP) Report: Working Through Embarrassment

Dear Ed,

I am having an unusual (for me) reaction to my attempt to write to FAQ about my first Tribe meeting last week. I normally have free-flowing words and feelings when creating my contributions. During the past four days I notice a difficulty identifying what I might want to share, even though I can still visualize virtually every word and interaction and sound that took place at the meeting. Especially the sounds!

Several members share their feelings and two Rocks Processes are enacted. My role-playing participation is (for me) quite uninhibited, which only surprises me later. At the time I feel totally committed; fleeting feelings of embarrassment barely register.

Of course, I am just a player ... it is not my "stuff" being enacted ... or is it? Displaying myself in front of a group like that, the very thing I reported being fearful about, instead comes easily to me.

Only now am I wondering what the others thought of me. I know that's where I need to go, and will end up going ... sh--! It's going to be painful, I know it. I want to do it, I don't want to do it, maybe I can get away without doing it, but what is the point of that? Here I am announcing that I have to do it, that I will do it.

I've come too far to turn back, I am afraid as I run toward the cliff, and I know I'm going over. I don't just jump, I LEAP, my arms outstretched and the wind in my face. My life is too precious to hold back from experiences. I am in free fall.

I make a "mistake" in the Tribe meeting by not understanding the customs. Another member makes one too. We are gently corrected by the Chief, and again, my embarrassment is only fleeting. This might have mortified me in the past, as it exactly mirrors my fear: I will be spontaneous and I will offend or hurt someone, and they won't like me. I know this awaits me in future meetings ... SH--!!

I feel confused and completely clear at the same time. WTF??

(And for those who do not care for profanity, you may not care for me either)

Thank you for sharing your process and your insights about embarrassment.

In Rocks Process Role Playing

you might surprise yourself
how easily and naturally
you fall into your role.

June 3, 2013

Doing the Work

Hi Chief,


I am doing well on materializing my snapshot of back testing and auto trading system. Full time commitment really makes a lot difference. Turning down job offers is some new pain I encounter. And I acknowledge my such feeling and let go the less important opportunities, to get traction for my trading career.

Now I am doing what I really want to do. I want to finish my system design and back testing before I go back to look for temporary software engineering job to support my trading career.

The trading system design is advancing faster than my expectation. I already finish the modeling with UML and coding some of the modules (price data processing, strategy skeleton and some of the brokerage functionality simulation). I am designing a system not only simulate one market with one strategy, but also have the ability to simulate a system to trade multiple markets at the same time, giving ability to control risk allocation and more. I want to simulate a trading account as real as possible. I am getting there.

One benefit of designing the fully automated system is that it makes me think more clearly on my strategy. It helps to uncover the ambiguity of my trading rules. And the computing power might enable me to catch more markets than myself, who is a busy father of two.

I think of this method few years ago and feel hard to turn those subtle human thinking process into machine. After my tribe work experience, I learn to acknowledge my feeling of hardness of such work, and I find that it's no longer as hard as what I believe before.


Thank you for sharing your process - and your insights - and for setting an example of doing the work.
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