The criticism against Dr Schwartz relates to the last third of his book, where he dicusses the Quantum Mind. That is a bit to spiritual for most scientist, and veers more towards Buddhism than science. It's funny that you first dismiss his science, only to propose something even more controversial: ACT.
I didn't want to get into a discussion about consciousness, I simply thought the book might be good for a kid. I am much more pessimistic on the concept of free will than Dr. Schwartz is, but I still found his book enjoyable. I like to expand my thinking as much as possible, even though I might not agree with the original premise. My point was just that for someone growing up, believing in having the power to change one's on brain can only be a strength. No point in being unhappy, just model your brain to be blissful. No need to have ADD, just model your brain to be able to concentrate. I think that is a better approach than admitting defeat without even trying, regardless of the validity of the concept.
Lastly, while neuroplasticity is not a new concept, the implications of it is. Dr. Norman Doidge made a decent documentary about, and wrote a book (which I haven't read), problems due to physical impairment. The brain used to be considered an immutable machine, but now it's accepted that neuroplasticity can actually repair stroke damages, e.g. This is a drastic departure from the old way of thinking.
P.S. If one can't see how treating OCD relates to relieving trading related problems, then I don't know what does. Remedying the latter is a lot easier than treating the former.
Not a joke. You do seem offended though and have rushed in and seem to misinterpreted both what I meant and what I can or can't see.
I think Scwhartz's work on OCD is superb but his extensions may be a stretch. I have read his book from end to end and thus agree with the criticisms at Amazon. And I can see relationships between elements of OCD and elements of psychological trading issues. The question I was trying to answer was about what could be applied to trading effectively. If you read both Schwartz's book and Russ's book you might see why I suggest the second.
I didn't suggest that anyone buy online courses. And if anyone reads your Wikipedia link on ACT they will question your suggestion that it is a quack version of CBT. You might read the book and give your opinion after that. I have read quite a few Buddhist texts and think that most will find them harder to relate to trading than "The Happiness Trap" or Dr Gary Dayton's work.
I didn't see this thread as about you and I hadn't seen my reply as about you or insulting to you. Sorry if I triggered something for you and you felt aggrieved.
Last edited by cusp; April 6th, 2012 at 08:36 PM.
Reason: added the 3rd paragraph for clarification
I was not offended at all; just being the satirical polemicist I've always been. I just wanted to get in one good fight before I left...
It seemed like you equated Schwartz' work to NLP and suggested mindfulness as an alternative, and I found that very strange considering mindfulness is a t the core of his work. I disagree with a lot of what he's writing, but, due to my affinity for esoteric ideas, I quite enjoyed his book.
I can't really comment on ACT, but, from what I read, I can't understand why wouldn't want to consult the original Buddhist texts instead. There are some excellent anecdotes in that material.
Personally, I find most of psychology to be pseudo-science, but, thanks to neuroscience, it seems to be veering in the right direction. I've always preferred philosophy for existential problems, and neuroscience for application of self-therapy.
I really don't like trader psychologists, probably because I see this things as a broader "whole". If you can control you emotions while trading, you can control them while playing sports or breaking up with your girlfriend. It's all the same. People tend to make things more complicated than they are.
Buddha said: "My words are to be accepted after examining them, not out of respect for me,". I think those are wise words to live by. Even Nietzsche with his "Got ist tot" had a sweet spot for Buddhism. Meditation is a powerful concept. I'm incapable of following directions, but I am a visual thinker and I guess I've developed my own meditation techniques. It's really all about acknowledging what one is really feeling.
Oh, don't forget to exercise. Neuroplasticity is worthless without neurogenesis!
In theory this seems logical, but from what I've seen (both for myself and others) being able to execute it in trading is a different matter. I've tried, done, excelled at, and succeeded doing all sorts of stuff. I approached trading with the same type of effort/commitment/focus/etc. that had previously brought me success. Trading kicked my ass pretty hard for quite a while. It has taken a completely different approach than anything else I've ever attempted. And I'm not talking trading methodology or strategy or whatever. No, the same thing that had contributed to my lifelong successes was stunting my growth as a trader: me.
Also, while it may seem like a matter of semantics, there is a difference between trying to control emotions and developing an active understanding of them. In the latter, I will seek out situations that complement my emotional framework and less likely to pit me against my emotions in some sort of internal pissing contest. I think it was Oscar Wilde who said, "I can resist everything except temptation." I like the idea of willpower as much as the next guy, but the bottom line is avoiding negatively tempting situations has a higher chance of success than trying to tackle it head on. It has taken me too many years of accumulating cinder block indentations on my forehead to erode the tendency to bulldog my way through stuff.
I'm not trying to deflect or detract from your ideas, not at all. I'm just saying that as simple as trading is on a purely functional level, there are reasons retail brokerages see so many retail traders blow out account after account. And a lot of those who blow out are smart, capable people who have also had their own history of success.
Also, to the original poster, I hope this side dialogue isn't too off-topic. I think it's related, but I can relate almost anything to anything. And I have been known to on occasion.
Anyway, I'm tired now and feel I've stumbled into ramble-y, so I'm gonna tap out for now
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. ~ Seneca
This post has been selected as an answer to the original posters question
Finding Your Zone: Ten Core Lessons for Achieving Peak Performance in Sports and Life
by Michael Lardon
Good book from a sports psychologist. Many examples from golf as the author worked extensively in this field, but you get a good idea of the core principles of peak performance in general, no matter in what field. It's also a short book and easy to read.