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Contributors Say Ed Says
Nov 30, 2015

Tribe Report

Beste Ed,

Ik wil graag aanwezig zijn bij de workshop in 2016.
Groeten uit regenachtig Nederland.

Three members present. After drumming and check-in, we start the meeting by sharing our intentions for this 4-quarter Tribe series. The chief wants the Tribe members to state clear, measurable goals.

I state I want to work on a suspected k-not around <hurting/disappointing others>. The chief asks what the problem is. I state that I often do/say things I don’t 100% want to do, to please others. When I try to say what I (not) want I often get hot and it feels like drama. After some more back-and-forth I commit to the following intention: I intend to fully experience my feeling of disappointing people.

Member 2 states his intention to realize initiatives that bring physical and spiritual health. The issue seems to be that he is not doing that in his job right now, but he is not able to move toward the goal.

The chief states his intention as “to create a self-scaling, health innovation company where people can do the best work of their lives”. As we talk more about his intention, the focus of the chief shifts around to different parts of the original statement. Not being able to “let go” is in the way of growing the company. Chief also mentions he might have an issue with “death” because he is not able to watch CSI Investigations with his wife. In the end we conclude his mission is not totally clear yet, and chief commits to updating us further via email.

Ready for TTP, chief asks who is hot. I say 7, other members says 4. Chief says 8 so we start his hot seat process.

Chief quickly gets into the form of clenching his fists and bending over, rocking on his chair. He says he feels sick. After some grunting he says he feels he is going around in circles, and stands up to walk around in small circles. He says he is not enjoying the feeling.

Back on his chair, he starts slapping himself on the head saying he feels stupid. He is enjoying this form, and smiling. He gets the AHA that there is nothing he needs to do with his company. If he relaxes and really (he puts emphasis on the word really) trusts his people, the company will go in the direction he wants. He also realizes there is no reason to hurry the process.

After a quick break I take the hot seat. I tell of a situation where I want to say I want to meet late, but the girl I´m dating thought we would go for dinner together and she acts disappointed.

I feel guilty about this although rationally I don´t think I do something wrong.

I quickly get in my form crossing my arms and bending my torso over my legs. I feel a cramped feeling in my stomach and feel like curling up. I make very strong PFFFF sounds, as if I am letting out steam in a controlled way. At the same time I make movements of “pushing away” with my hands.

The Tribe does a very good job of cheering me on and I get into another form of sitting a little more relaxed, with my forehead in my hand, and my elbows on my knees, slowly shaking my head. I still make the PFFF sounds. I put my head inside my shoulders, as if I am shrugging. I want to say “you are an idiot” and say it, but I don’t like it.

Around this moment I get a flashback. I am around 15 years old, it’s Friday night and we are with a group of 6-8 boys drinking beer, at my friend’s place. I know and like 2 of the guys, we became friends this year in our class at school. They invited me along with their usual group of friends but I don’t really like the others too much. I want to establish myself in the group and I feel the urge to make some sarcastic jokes/comments but I don’t. I have a sense of isolation/sadness, feeling distracted, in my own head. Nothing special happens after that, we all have a good night out.

I get back into my form of curling into a ball and making PFFF sounds. Then I get the idea to sit up a bit and push my hands into my stomach.

The Tribe cheers me on and I get really into it, and more flashbacks come, all having to do with my mother getting extremely angry when I say what I want/feel/think. A lot of memories come up, from candy and money to religion.

I feel more relaxed now and sit more straight up, with my head in my hands. I show my face to the Tribe with my eyes closed, and feel a lot of tension/feelings in my face. I try to focus on feeling it but when I think I might even start crying I start laughing and hide my face in my hands again. The chief asks if I want to roleplay or re-integrate but I feel empty and done, and I feel a bit rushed too (because I want to leave time for the hot seat of member 2 and). During check-out I feel tired and a bit sad, but also happy about a “good” hot seat.

Member 2 says he isn’t very hot but wants to try anyway. Very quickly he gets in a “paralyzed” form, laying on the floor sideways, curled up, with one arm around his legs and the other crossed over his shoulder. He says he wants to do his job the way he likes it, not how his supervisors tell him to do it. His next form is him pointing and saying **** you, loudly. And then out of nothing he says “I don´t want to feel your fear!” This is an AHA for all of us, because in previous hot seats this member dealt with the issue of fear / freezing in his job. We are all smiling and do a re-integration of his forms.

During check-out we all state we are happy with the Tribe sessions and are looking forward to more of this.
Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting your meeting.

Dank u voor uw interesse in het seminar.
Nov 30, 2015

Seeking Approval / Investment


I want to share my feelings with you. 

At times not so much anymore I am guilty of seeking others approval.  I realize this a form of control.

I was having a conversation with a friend about best investment ever made.  I thought long and hard about this and my wife interrupted and said "this is an easy one, the best investment you ever made was when you consulted Ed." 

Thank you Ed.
Thank you for sharing your process and for acknowledging the work.
Nov 30, 2015

Feeling Terrible

Dear Ed,

I feel terrible right now.

I agree to a business agreement on very detrimental terms in the past. I recently engage a lawyer who tells me that the terms of the agreement contravene the law and I can declare them void. I can't resolve the dispute out of court and the matter is likely to go to the judiciary.

I feel so many horrible feelings right now: weakness in my arms and shoulders, black acidic bile in my stomach, a churning belly, a barely controllable urge to cry and sob.

I regret my past actions and feel anger at the other person for trying to take advantage of me.

I also feel moral uncertainty: I question myself if I behave like a cheat right now.

I feel ticklishness in my chest and ribs and cramping in my right leg. I feel all alone and scared, cold and shivering.

I miss my sons. I miss a loving and happy relationship with my wife. I almost feel my life ending - a bit of an overreaction according to a voice in my head, but I feel what I feel.

I thank my feelings for giving me all their sensations. I pray for guidance - but I don't feel an answer. As I meditate and feel my feelings deeply I realize how rarely I stand and fight.

In the past I hate confrontation and let people walk all over me. I feel a little glimmer of a sense of purpose in the tightness in my chest. I must fight. I must defend my rights.

Your loving and thankful student.
Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your "terrible" feelings to Tribe - and coming to know their positive intentions.

These very feelings, as your allies, may help you stay on your path toward right livelihood.
Nov 29, 2015

Helen Fisher Talk - Personality Types (video)


I found this very interesting and entertaining, so I want to share it with you.
Thank you for sharing the link.
Nov 29, 2015

Chicago Tribe To Meet


I plan to host the next Chicago Tribe meeting on December 15th at 7pm at a downtown Chicago location.  To participate interested persons can send me an email at

Thank you.
Thank you for sending me your announcement.
Nov 27, 2015

Re-Reading The Trading Tribe

Dear Ed,

Many over here in [Country] ...... Love you along with regards!

Reading your book again to become better.

Thank you for sharing your process - and for acknowledging my book.
Nov 27, 2015

More on Bitcoin


Central banks hate bitcoin.

You can't inflate it away. You can't print more of it (unlike what central banks have been doing with their respective currencies to fund their wars or to kick the can down the road with respect to their gaping deficits).

It's a great store of value, above and beyond that of gold.

Taking into account the nine characteristics of money -- scarcity, durability, portability, divisibility, verifiability, storability, fungibility, difficulty to counterfeit, and adoption -- bitcoin matches or beats gold across the board in every category.

But bitcoin's killer app is stability of the monetary supply.

Thank you for extending your remarks.

I wonder how you see the Fed ever embracing Bitcoin, or any other form of currency that they can't inflate.
Nov 27, 2015


Dear Ed,

Noways I read your book regularly to grasp the concepts clearly.

Last month my ex wife needs guidance and support frequently.

She calls me many times and I help her file all her financial documents in the department though I am under no obligation to do so. My son objects to my helping her like this telling me that she does not deserve it. I know he is right.

I just help because we have common children.

After all her work is over, she calls me and tells me bluntly without any emotions "You know I always like you as a friend but never ever as a husband. I never wanted to marry you but it is in our destiny".

My response to her is "If you never loved me why the hell did you marry me and that also for 20 long years?"

She says: it's in our destiny. That's all. She puts the phone down.

Her words shake me deeply. Her ruthlessness in relationship always hurts me. Deep down again I felt pain, may be  pain of rejection. Pain of a break up. Pain of misjudging a person.

After she puts down the phone, I lock my door and cry for few minutes.
For twenty years I keep hopes for her. That she would change.

I realize that nobody can change the person unless that person wants to.

In stocks I sell very fast as soon as I realize my mistake.

In my life I can not.

Her words affect me for about five minutes very badly. I realize I still love her though our divorce has already taken place.

Then slowly I start feeling that in a way she helped me a lot by telling me the truth. The truth I know but never accept. I feel released from the relationship with her words: I never loved you.

I do not feel anymore love or friendship now with her.  In a way she released me.

Soon I start feeling much better. I thank her in my mind. Just now in your TTT book I read again about Breaking Up is hard to do.

I know my wife cheating me not only financially. There are many symptoms of cheating.   I have the feeling even my children know and that's why they both opt to reside with me.

I become peaceful after many years. I hope to remain peaceful now onward with this new realization.

Our both children are with me and we all seem to have stabilized our life.

In between I read that you recommend reading book Toxic Parents. I buy that book and now will start reading this coming week.

Thank you for all the guidance and support you have extended.

Hope I write in SVO-p as much as possible nowadays.

Take care Chief.

Loving Hugs as usual.
Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your feelings about <ruthless> <cheating> and <destiny> to Tribe as entry points.

These feelings, as allies, might then provide you with information - to help you attract and maintain an intimacy-centric relationship.

man crying

The Feelings You Don't Like

run your life.

Nov 27, 2015

Tribe Report

Hi Ed

I send this report in but I don't see it on FAQ. Perhaps it slips through the cracks. Perhaps you don't want to put it on FAQ, which I accept.


        Last Tribe we had no-one hot and no issues people wanted to work on, so we do snapshots (concise declarations of goals / desired end states). One member writes his goal as "6". The process of turning this into a comprehensible statement produces some frustration in the others. We have a few instances of things like "try to X" or "Look into Y" but in the end we get a set of concise clear statements of intent.

        This tribe has 5 members present, 3 apologies.

        We start at 7:30 pm with drumming, check-in and some exercises. I try a new exercise "tell me your favorite movie scene". One member mentions the final scene of "Schindler's List and is very moved recalling his visit to a concentration camp. Members seem to be getting better at bringing to mind events and feelings from the past. MY movie scene is the final scene of "The Sacrifice", about the end of the world.

        #1 Feels he misses a few trades from a lax attitude. But not hot about it.

        #3 (me) Health issue. I have a biopsy for possible cancer scheduled for later in the week under general anesthetic. The doctor thinks the chance I have cancer is 50%. He says it would "probably" be curable "at this early stage". I think the risk is much lower, less than 5-10%, as I have had various scans and probes which showed nothing, and the blood test results, combined with other metrics, suggest a low risk. Still he is a professor of medicine and so I cannot dismiss his opinions lightly. I feel quite tense at times about the situation and my family members are quite emotional about it too.

        #6 Work is OK now after his hot seat and using the book "How to Win Friends and Influence People". He even got better seats at a rock concert using these techniques.

         #7 Moving to <country> in a few days. Currently organizing a conference in <country> with her partner. Frustrated with how her partner works with her on the conference. She feels like the meat in the sandwich and feels she often finds herself making excuses for other people and covering their failures. Her move to <country> is make or break for her relationship with her partner. A lot is at stake as time is in short supply. She is giving it three months. She decides she doesn't work with her partner in future, after the conference. She plans to confine their relationship to the domestic sphere.

         #10 Still processing and leveraging his last hot seat. Feels a bit frustrated with people who don't understand his insight that a strategy his team is running is actually not sound, and that they have just been lucky so far.

        It seems to be unanimous that I am hottest so I go first. After a description of the issue I focus on the fear of dying. As I ramp this up with the support of the tribe, I feel vulnerable and under threat. I feel that the world and many of the people in it are cold and indifferent. it is not fair. When I try to recall when I felt like this, it was in primary school, grades 3-6. I can remember only a single instance in that time, after the first half of grade 3, when a teacher showed compassion or empathy for me or for another student.

        The process goes slowly, as it turns out, though it does not seem a long time to me at the time. I have multiple levels of confusion and uncertainty. In the past leaving all decisions to the doctors has led to some terrible outcomes for me and for family members, and I have strong opinions about the areas where the medical system breaks down.

        I have several goes at the hot seat trying to get to the core issue.

        I eventually decide that my rock comprises the feeling that the world should be fair and should care for me and I get angry and sad when it doesn't. I get this from my mother. She likes to be an innocent victim, and so do I at times.

I find better strategies - make the best use of the time I have, perceive and go with the trend of the systems around me, create and nurture relationships with caring people who I care for, create wonderful things, enjoy the wonderful things and people in the world.

        I don't feel I need to reenact this. Partly because this takes a long time already. Partly because the new rocks feel very strong in me now. I feel quite euphoric, like being at the end of an incredible trip. And I feel I cannot wait to get going tomorrow with making the most of my life. Whatever happens with the biopsy I feel a great positive change.

        #7 talks about her relationship and tells us how she feels and her strategy. She is moving to <country> to make or break the relationship. A couple of us feel she may be avoiding some issues. We spell these out. She has full conscious awareness of all these things and, as far as we can tell, she deals with them very directly. At the end I feel she has challenges of life but no rocks. Maybe though her partner could benefit from a hot seat.

        At the end she feels good for having gone through all this, albeit without a formal hot seat. Sometimes some people just like to have a rant and get it all out there.

        I feel sad that #7 is leaving. I feel she acts very courageously at Tribe and is very open and takes the risk of being vulnerable. We give her a card we have written on and tell her we miss her and wish her "Bon Voyage". She says she will visit Tribe when she returns here for holidays or work. She thinks of starting a Tribe in <country> but feels daunted by it. I think that she would do fine, but I don't say it. I give her a hug when she drops me off at the railway station for my long trip home.
Thank you for following up, for sharing your process and for documenting your meeting.
Nov 26, 2015



I'm meditating on things I'm grateful for in my life and you came to my mind , so there it is, I am thankful that I have met you Ed Seykota.

Thank you for checking in.
Nov 26, 2015

Wants a Manager

Dear Mr Seykota,

I'm a private investor. Do you manage client money?

Best Regards
Thank you for raising this issue.

My willingness to manage client funds depends on a number of factors, including: the client risk propensity, attachment to money, expectations and alignment on methodology.
Nov 26, 2015

What Stands

My Dear Ed,

While reading TTT book today and get the feeling that your FAQs is a big extension of your TTT book.

I read page 91. The sentence "Show me what's standing between you and your goal" is amazing.

So simple, so profound.

Hugs again.
Thank you for sharing your process.
Nov 26, 2015

Completion, Redux

Dear Ed,

This week's starting my intention is to complete my trading manual and also read your TTT book again because I know clearly that I have yet to understand deep meanings of many matters from that book.

I today complete my work 100%. I feel very joyful and share the news with my daughter who notices my joy.

Now I pick up your book and lo and behold, I open page 109. I read : If you want to do something, you have to do it now or not do it now.

So true.

I must have seen this picture on your FAQ. Wow. I now understand your statement: The now is all there is, at least for now.  Thank you Chief.


Thank you for sharing your process.
Nov 25, 2015

Rubix Champ


YOU might like this:
Thank you for sending me the link.
Nov 25, 2015


Dear Chief,

I today just now finish my trading manual and rules.

I feel very happy and it's all about 100% job satisfaction.

I want to finish off before this month end.

I check by behaviour. I looked at my intention. 

I saw I am in the right direction since last one week.

Very good result I got.  I somehow managed to enter into some zone and the work gets over faster with intensive focus.

You have helped through your replies. Your TTT book has surely helped.

Thanks a lot.
Thank you for sharing your process.
Nov 24, 2015

Reaching Out

Dear Ed,

Over the past several years I develop a new tradition that I enjoy very much: on my birthday, I reach out to people I care about and thank them for contributing to the happiness I feel about being alive.

Today is my birthday, so I want to express gratitude to you and to the FAQ community for the numerous opportunities for personal growth that I have experienced over the past year, whether attending Tribe meetings, attending your workshop in Puerto Rico, or simply reading FAQ's and sharing my feelings as well.

The feeling of being among like-minded people, who want to communicate more intimately and respectfully with others, is truly empowering.  We are all more human than otherwise, and receiving the personal feelings and insights of others creates a feeling of connection that I believe we are meant to experience.

Thank you for providing a forum for us to create that connection.  I feel very glad to be alive.

Thank you for sharing your process and for checking in on this, the special day of your birth.
Nov 24, 2015

No Answer


I went to the link.  I do appreciate the humor - always a good thing with market stress but I did not see an answer to the original question.

Original question: Ed,  do you use standard deviations in your trading and if so how? 

Thank you,
Thank you for following up.

Your question conjures up asking a cook how he uses a spoon - or asking  a carpenter how he uses a hammer.

Basically, you use standard deviation to quantify a data set as to whether the points tend to bunch up or spread out.

You can Google it to find out more.

I do not give trading recommendations or recommend systems on this site; see ground rules.
Nov 24, 2015


Dear Ed,

Today I am very happy with the progress made so far in finalizing and  giving finishing touches to my trading manual. Basically its a trading map to guide me in my trading. 70% of pages checked and set. 

Reading few pages of TTT book also makes me a better person.

You might like these words/lyrics of the song I have put in my TM (Trading Manual)

"Trend is up, Trend is down, I wanna profit all around. Trend is up, Trend is down, makes me feel happy ..."   inspired from an English song.

Good day Chief.

Best wishes and regards.
Thank you for sharing your process.
Nov 24, 2015


Dear Ed,

Since last few months I am preparing my trading manual to guide me for my plans to enter trading world in the non existent future. High aversion to loss and having the tendency to be perfect leads to delay. 

Focusing on being perfect and to complete my trading manual before I actually start trading leads to many horrible delays in terms of super opportunities lost.

I open my incomplete work just now and start to complete it in phases. Suddenly I remember TTT book and your remark in it.

I open page 10 and read your sentence: I have to simply acknowledge  my feeling about "wanting it to be perfect" and do it now.

I wholeheartedly agree with your view. I feel relived.

Thank you
Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your feelings about <having to do it right> to Tribe.
Nov 23, 2015

Charles Poliquin Event

Hi Ed,

It was great to meet you and hear you speak at yesterday’s Meeting of the Minds seminar in Dallas.  My wife and I enjoyed the seminar so much that we found ourselves not wanting it to end. 

I love your System Dynamics and model-based approach to analyzing the economy. We will be busy for the next few weeks digging into your on line material in order to learn more. 

You have also inspired me to do some of my own research into writing some C# code for trend following. 

My wife and I are both into nutrition, working out and studying investments so the conference topics were a perfect fit for us.


P.S. We have been humming your songs all day :-)
Thank you for sharing your impressions.


Ed With Charles Poliquin

Dallas, TX, November 21, 2015

Nov 23, 2015

Tribe Report

The Hotseat arrives last to the meeting and takes the most uncomfortable seat, right under a light, directly across from a woman. The HS states that the setting is “perfect.”
The HS arrives hot and ready to work. All the other Tribe members agree to support the member in the Hotseat. I manage the process and other Tribe members co-manage the process at various times. I notice the management of the process goes where it needs to go. During the process a Tribe member offers up a “Why?” question which results in the HS getting back into a cognitive, cerebral, “in-my-head” mode, and I quickly acknowledge that and the HS gets right back into the feeling. I regard the derailment as a necessary part of the process and one that the HS somehow invites to the process.
The HS offers framing and context by sharing some recent correspondence with the HS’s sister. All the Tribe members express feelings of jealousy at the relationship of the sister and HS. The sister’s correspondence is profoundly insightful, full of compassion, and sans of any bullshit. She describes the role of the HS in the family unit as well as how the family dynamics operate.
The HS expresses feelings of loneliness and rejection, along with medicinal physical resources: a trifecta. The HS feels loneliness, and the Tribe assists the HS in feeling loneliness by walking out of the room and leaving the HS all alone. The Tribe returns to the room, and receives confirmation that the HS is OK with the feeling of loneliness, which the HS describes as peaceful. The HS is OK feeling loneliness.
The HS points to the throat area and identifies that area as rejection. The HS feels rejection and coughs and spits and makes choking noises. I notice that the HS does not appear to like the feeling of rejection. The HS states clearly, “I don’t like that. I don’t like the feeling.”
At this point, I say, “I wonder if you’re willing to feel rejection and really get into it. You know how this works. This is your Hotseat, and we are all here to support you.” I poll the Tribe for willingness to support the HS in feeling rejection. All Tribe members agree in supporting the HS in feeling rejection. I have a memory of thinking that a rocks process will not work if the HS is not willing to fully feel rejection—the HS has to express willingness to feel rejection.
Once the HS gets really into feeling rejection, I, along with the other Tribe members, start laughing and making funny comments along the lines of, “That’s the best rejection, I’ve ever seen…”
The HS begins laughing while simultaneously feeling rejection. I notice the HS appears at a tipping point, and is laughing, and I say, “I wonder if you can feel rejection without laughing.” The HS bursts out laughing, and, after a pregnant pause points to his throat and says, “This is just a feeling.” Upon hearing this, I glance at a Tribe member, and we both nod in agreement that the HS gets completion on having willingness to fully feel rejection.

The HS then goes through a process of simulating relationships while feeling rejection and gets different results. The HS shares this process verbally with the Tribe as the HS is going through it. The HS seems OK and sometimes quite pleased with the new results. The HS successfully demonstrates mastery at feeling rejection—no formal rocks process is necessary.
During the checkout, I mention that the HS seems more “open.” Another Tribe member that is a woman repeats the “open” statement and it seems that a woman making that statement/feeling really resonates with the HS. I get a sense that the HS needs/wants to hear/feel that from a woman.
I notice a change in the posture of the HS at the conclusion of the meeting. Other tribe members comment on the more upright posture.
I marvel at the HS’s ability to summon all the resources necessary for the HS’s process. And I notice that the HS’s process is something all the Tribe members share. While the HS is working through the process, the process is working through all the Tribe members. I notice that the Tribe process seems to work better when all participants have levels of willingness to commit to the process that mirror the HS’s level of willingness to commit to the process. I also find reinforcement in the theory that the HS is the one that’s really in control and is running the meeting. The process manager’s ability to manage a HS’s process reflects the HS’s willingness to feel and commit to the process. The relationship between the process manager and the HS and all members of the Tribe seems to contain a positive feedback loop that promotes exponential growth and/or exponential decay. The connection appears subtle and seems to work best when all parties are remaining in the now. In short, the process works best when all participants are invested in the process.
I feel warmth, exhaustion, and happiness at the conclusion of the meeting. I feel happiness in playing a part in the HS’s process.
Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting the meeting.
Nov 23, 2015

Tribe Meeting Report


The Tribe met for a meeting. The HS came to the meeting wanting to work and made it clear there was an issue to address. He was motivated to make changes as he has years of frustration that he wants no more of.

HS starts off reading an email exchange between his sister and himself discussing life as they grew up. I was amazed two siblings wrote with such feeling and shared the deepest pains of childhood. There was no invaldation of feelings just complete love and understanding.

HS can't attract the type of woman in his life he wants. He easily attracts the other types. The smothering type or the one he can never satisfy. He can't ever get the one he has common interests or who is warm and shares feelings and enjoys working through her problems and not living her problems.

HS has the feeling of pressure below his adams apple or a constriction and get into forms. It is hard to find the memory. He knows all about the story and has thought of his memories of his childhood with the smotherer and the woman he can never please. Growing up he was never good enough even though he was brilliant. His parents used him to validate themselves and if he was exceeding in things that brought them 'glory' he was good enough. The smotherer used him for her affection needs. So with no matter how good he did but the bar constantly being raised and having a person in his life that used him to get her needs met, he just can't choose the woman that doesn't need him to validate herself or wants to smother him with herself.

As the HS does the process the PM asks him if he can find a happy face with the feelings of rejection he doesn't want to feel. Eventually the HS begins to laugh when thinking about the feelings of rejection and remmebering the memories of his childhood. The judge against rejection falls and he can see being rejected by women who think he isn't good enough is just a sign that the two aren't compatible with each other. I'm not sure I remember the outcome of the dealing with the smothering type but HS can feel the undesirable feelings of being in a relationship with a smothering woman and can now quickly feel the boundary and stops the relationship.

HS did bring up the positives of being alone caused by only finding relationships he doesn't want. By being alone, life is peaceful and a peaceful life is good. Finding a peaceful life with a woman to share feelings with and support is priceless.

Great work HS. I fully support you in continuing your work and finding a woman who genuinely shares feelings and loves you just because you are you.
Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting the meeting.
Nov 23, 2015

Sadness - Anticipating Death of Parents


I have a memory come up I haven't thought about for decades. I recall I feel incredibly alone and sadness feels me I also feel scared. These feelings and the thoughts come to me fairly often as a young boy usually at night when I am alone in my bedroom.

I realize I am the youngest in my family and that means I will have to watch my mom and dad die. Being the youngest of four siblings I will also be forced to see them die and then I will be all alone. A few times when the feelings are too much I go to my mom and tell her. She hugs me and she gets tears in her eyes but cannot comfort me in any other way. I wonder what other way I need comforting. I have this fear many times growing up as a very young child. And now in my forties I remember it again.

I feel incredible sadness again and I tear up. I tear up because I realize I have felt alone and sadness from such a young age. I notice I don't like the feeling but I can now feel the feeling. I do wonder what is behind it and how I can work with it to release it's power over my life.

I now have an entry point to take to Tribe. I wonder if you have any observations or feelings as you read my note.

Thank you.
Thank you for sharing your process.

I concur with your notion to take our sadness to Tribe as an entry point.
Nov 23, 2015

Tribe Meting Report -
Dealing With Loneliness / Throat Issues


I write this to share my recent Hot Seat Process.

My issue has to do with loneliness and with my historical inability to maintain a relationship with a significant other.

In preparation for the session, I go to great lengths to think about and to analyze my situation and to identify possible rocks. I exchange several emails with my sister who has complementary memories of our family dynamics.

For example, I have a critical mother, quick to point out my faults and slow to connect emotionally. I do not recall her ever giving me a hug or holding me. I recall my father having bouts of anger and taking it out on us by administering corporal punishment. I recall seeing stars upon receiving a surprise slap to the side of the face for saying something wrong.  My sister recalls receiving repeating beatings for leaving the screen door open. We have to say "Sir" as in "yes, Sir."

On the other hand I have a grandmother who likes to touch me and pet me, even to the point of crossing my personal boundaries; she occasionally inflicts physical pain on me – perhaps to establish authority and perhaps as punishment for not complying willingly with her other demands.

All the while, growing up, I have to maintain, in public, a facade as an ideal child from an ideal family. When guests come over to the house, I receive the compulsory invitation from my parents to perform math tricks – or otherwise to show off - in front of the guests to demonstrate my parents' skill in raising a young scholar.

Not knowing anything different, I assume I have a normal, even above-average family.  After all, mothers who kiss their children risk infecting them with germs – or so says my mother.  She knows best; as a school nurse, she knows all about medicine.

So I have a cold, unavailable relationship with my mother, a needy and smothering one with my grandmother and a domineering and violent one with my father and I have to confirm this as normal and act the part of an exceptional child.

Post puberty, my historical relationships with women tend to fall into three categories. (1) cold, distant, critical and invalidating - I try incessantly, unsuccessfully and obsessively to establish an emotional connection – and experience rejection and humiliation in return and then wind up expressing frustration and anger; (2) smothering and needy – I get little respect for my personal boundaries even to the point of suffering personal and property injury; (3) casual and formal - I have occasional medicinal contact by mutual consent.

I keep winding up in these situations by (1) selection of partners who approximate my models and by (2) projecting roles on to them to bring them even more in line with my scripts.

With all this information in mind, I enter the Tribe meeting and announce my intention to get on the hot seat and to get through my issue. I then read, out loud, some of the emails between my sister and myself – and notice tears welling up in me - and in my throat, preventing me from completing several sentences.

The Tribe leader authorizes me to proceed and elects to manage the process himself.  I figure that since he now has a lot of information about my family dynamics, he would certainly employ the Rocks Process.

This turns out to reflect my own preconception more than his style as he takes the process in another direction. He encourages me to feel lonely.

With that, I start to notice a lot of tension in my face and enormous discomfort in my throat.  As I get into it, the other Tribe members pile on with more encouragement to get into my forms. At one point, they all leave the room to, well, leave me alone and lonely.

Soon, and with more encouragement, I sense my throat turning inside out with pain as if someone has me by the neck with thumbs pressing in on my windpipe.  I also have a desire to throw up and to clear something nasty out of my throat. I also feel I have things I want to say that I can't get past the block at my throat. I also feel fear of corporal punishment and humiliation.

The Tribe gives me more encouragement to go deeper. I begin to gag and to wretch as whatever creature I have in in my throat wakes up and starts to wriggle around. Meanwhile my face tightens in disgust as I try to get rid of the disgusting feeling.

I see how this feeling runs my life and I want it to go away and leave me alone.

The process manager picks up on this and observes that I don't seem to like the feeling. I fully agree. “I just want to get rid of it and get on with my life.” He then reminds me, "You know the drill; the feeling you resist runs your life.  I would like to see some willingness on your part to experience this feeling and to make friends with it."

I think, "Of course. how can I miss something so obvious; you never see your own judgment."After noticing my own mind running through interpretations for a few moments, I again hear the PM encouraging me to move forward, “This time, smile while you feel it."

I find this suggestion so incongruous and also so to-the-point and, in retrospect, so obvious, that I have to laugh at the situation - and then I follow his suggestion. I start to grin and simultaneously experience the creature in my throat.

As I come to experience my throat and and get to know it better, I also notice the creature inside transforming from an adversary to an ally – one that can help me sort out relationships early on and can steer me toward having good ones.

I then see a thin line extending horizontally in front of me, a kind of spectrum of relationships available to me, with the desperate and futile attempt to win affection, the disgusting and futile attempt to protect my boundaries and futile medicinal contact – all occupying tiny and insignificant points along the spectrum. 

Then, I also notice the rest of the line contains a multitude of other possibilities – and that I no longer have to entrain my relationships to match one or another of my three dysfunctional templates. 

I get the notion that I no longer have to worry about any of this. I figure I can just go along with my life, reaching out for opportunities to connect with people along my normal paths and allow things to work themselves out.

I see that through the process of remaining open to others, I may at some point discover that I have new dimensions in the relationships I have with my friends – and I might also have new, different and nurturing types of relationships with people I would heretofore find unavailable or uninteresting.

Perhaps I might even wind up following the path of one of my male friends; I recall attending his wedding recently, and hearing him proclaim his joy at marrying his best friend.

Prior to the process, I would feel fear and apprehension for his well being, and grow cynical.  Now I see commitment as an opportunity to share lives together, on the loving side.

After the process, my fellow Tribe members tell me my face looks different and that my posture looks more open.  I sense I might have my head back a little more so as to get my Adam’s apple out into the open and into action where it can do me some good. I find other people more accessible and less threatening – and I find myself having less interest in impressing them and more interest in connecting with them.

I thank my Tribe for their support in creating a space for me to receive these insights – and to my Process Manager for ignoring my attempt to manage my own process and for guiding the Tribe and myself from A to B, elegantly, almost effortlessly, and enjoyably.
Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting your Tribe meeting.


The Feeling You Resist

runs your life.

Nov 23, 2015

TTP Workshop


I wonder if you have a workshop planned for 2015 or 16?
I’m in San Francisco, and would love to learn from you.
Thank you for expressing an interest in attending a TTP Workshop.  I plan to host one in 2016.
Nov 22, 2015

Dallas Event Feedback

Hi Ed,

It was great to meet you and hear you speak at yesterday’s Meeting of the Minds seminar in Dallas.  My wife and I enjoyed the seminar so much that we found ourselves not wanting it to end.  I love your System Dynamics and model-based approach to analyzing the economy. We will be busy for the next few weeks digging into your online material in order to learn more.  You have also inspired me to do some of my own research into writing some C# code for trend following.  My wife and I are both into nutrition, working out and studying investments so the conference topics were a perfect fit for us.


P.S. We have been humming your songs all day :-)
Thank you for sharing your reactions.
Nov 22, 2015

Standard Deviation


do you use standard deviations in your trading and if so how? 

Thank you for your time.
Thank you for raising this issue.

So a physicist, a biologist and a mathematician are sitting in a street café watching people entering and leaving the house on the other side of the street. First they see two people entering the house. Time passes. After a while they notice three people leaving the house. The physicist says, "The measurement wasn't accurate." The biologist says, "They must have reproduced." The mathematician says, "If one more person enters the house then it will be empty."
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