Passing by a Jeet Kune Do training center in Hong Kong earlier today got me thinking of Bruce Lee, his life, his martial arts and movie careers, and most importantly, his philosophy.
In one of my favorite books about Bruce Lee, Dynamic Becoming, author James Bishop covers Bruce Lee’s life and martial arts philosophy, some of it, could have easily come out of a trading book, without a doubt, Bruce lee could have been a great speculator.
The following are two sample quotes from the book, both relate to martial arts, life and trading.
“The great mistake is to anticipate the outcome of the engagement; you ought not to be thinking of whether it ends in victory or in defeat. let nature take its course, and your tools will strike at the right moment.”
Too many speculators, traders and investors are emotionally over invested in their ideas. In their mind their research is solid, their charts pointing higher and positive outcome is anticipated.
In fighting as in trading, anticipating particular outcome can lead one to get caught off guard at the most dangerous moment, when your opponent (the market) does something highly unpredictable, the ability to act in these moments requires ones to instantly apply the right tools, such as execute a stop loss on surprise negative news event, a tough psychological task when one is over anticipating a particular outcome.
“We must first understand ourselves in order to know anything and to understand and solve problems.”
As in the martial arts, trading starts with a battle with ourselves first and our opponent second. We must beat our fears, our insecurities and our emotional weaknesses, a speculator that does not understand himself is likely to have tough time applying the right tools of the craft.