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(2009-03-31 14:39:57)


How this characteristic applies to our trading is also quite profound. The trading environment offers us an arena of unlimited opportunities to accumulate wealth. But just because the money is available and we can perceive the possibility of getting it, that doesn’t necessarily mean that we (as individuals) have an unlimited sense of self-valuation. In other words, there could be a huge gap between how much money we desire for ourselves, how much we perceive is available, and how much we actually believe we are worth or deserve.
Everyone has a sense of self-valuation. The easiest way to describe this sense is to list every active belief, both conscious and subconscious, that has the potential to argue either for or against accumulating or achieving greater and greater levels of success and prosperity. Then match the energy from the positively charged beliefs against the energy from the negatively charged beliefs. If you have more positively charged energy arguing for success and prosperity than negatively charged energy arguing against them, then you have a positive sense of self-valuation. Otherwise, you have a negative sense of self-valuation.
The dynamics of how these beliefs interact with one another is not nearly so simple as I’m making it sound. In fact, it can be so complex that it could take years of sophisticated mental work to organize and sort out. What you need to know is that it’s almost impossible to grow up in any social environment and not acquire some negatively charged beliefs that would argue against success or accumulating vast sums of money. Most of these self-sabotaging beliefs have long been forgotten and operate at a subconscious level, but the fact that we may have forgotten them doesn’t mean they’ve been de-activated.
How do we acquire self-sabotaging beliefs? Unfortunately, it’s extremely easy. Probably the most common way is when a child engages in some activity that a parent or teacher doesn’t want him to do and the child accidently injures himself. Many parents, to get their point across to the child, will respond to a situation like this by saying, “This (whatever pain you are experiencing) wouldn’t have happened to you if you didn’t deserve it,” or “You disobeyed me and look what happened, God punished you.” The problem with making or hearing statements like this is that there’s a potential for the child to associate every future injury with these same statements and, subsequently, form a belief that he must be an unworthy person, undeserving of success, happiness, or love.
Anything we feel guilty about can have an adverse effect on our sense of self-worth. Usually guilt is associated with being a bad person, and most people believe that bad people should be punished, certainly not rewarded. Some religions teach children that having a lot of money isn’t godly or spiritual. Some people believe that making money in certain ways is wrong, even though it may be perfectly legal and moral from society’s perspective. Again, you may not have a specific recollection of learning something that would argue against the success you perceive as possible, but that doesn’t mean that what you learned is no longer having an effect.
The way these subconscious self-sabotaging beliefs manifest themselves in our trading is usually in the form of lapses in focus or concentration, resulting in any number of trading errors, like putting in a buy for a sell or vice versa, or allowing yourself to give in to distracting thoughts that compel you to leave the screen, only to find out when you return that you missed the big trade of the day. I’ve worked with many traders who achieved various levels of consistent success, but found they just couldn’t break through certain thresholds in acquiring equity. They discovered an invisible but very real barrier similar to the proverbial glass ceiling that many women executives experience in the corporate world.
Every time these traders hit the barrier, they experienced a significant draw down, regardless of the market conditions. However, when asked about what happened, they typically blamed their sudden run of bad luck on just that - luck or the vagaries of the market. Interestingly, they typically created a steadily rising equity curve, sometimes over a period of several months, and the significant draw down always occurred at the same spot in their equity curve. I describe this psychological phenomenon as being in a “negative zone.” As magically as money can flow into a trader’s accounts when he is “in the zone,” it can just as easily flow out, if he is in a negative zone where unresolved self-valuation issues mysteriously act on his perception of information and behavior.
I am not implying here that you have to de-activate every belief that would argue against your ever-expanding positive sense of self-valuation, because you don’t. But you must be aware of the presence of such beliefs, and take specific steps in your trading regimen to compensate when they start expressing themselves.
第11章 像交易者一样思考
If you asked me to distill trading down to its simplest form, I would say that it is a pattern recognition numbers game. We use market analysis to identify the patterns, define the risk, and determine when to take profits. The trade either works or it doesn’t. In any case, we go on to die next trade. It’s that simple, but it’s certainly not easy. In fact, trading is probably the hardest thing you’ll ever attempt to be successful at. That’s not because it requires intellect; quite the contrary! But because the more you think you know, the less successful you’ll be. Trading is hard because you have to operate in a state of not having to know, even though your analysis may turn out at times to be “perfectly” correct. To operate in a state of not having to know, you have to properly manage your expectations. To properly manage your expectations, you must realign your mental environment so that you believe without a shadow of a doubt in the five fundamental truths.
In this chapter, I am going to give you a trading exercise that will integrate these truths about the market at a functional level in your mental environment. In the process, I’ll take you through the three stages of development of a trader.


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