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Luck Favors the Prepared and Persistent

James Altucher‘s latest blog post “The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Mastery” is worth a read if you want to know what it takes to truly master something. An excerpt:

At some point you have to cook 10,000 meals. Or play a million hands of poker. Or 1000s of games of chess. Or start 20 businesses.

Very few are successful right away. That would require too much luck and luck favors the prepared and the persistent.

In those 1000s of whatever you will encounter much failure. We all know that the best baseball players in the world are enormous successes if they strike out “only” 70% of the time.

When my dad died I went to his house and logged onto this chess account. I saw that he played about 30,000 games. He never got any better.

A lot of people can play the 10,000 hands of poker and never get better. Or bake 1000 cakes and never get better.

You have to remember your experiences, study your failures, try to note what you did right and what you did wrong, and remember them for future experiences.

Will future experiences be exactly like the old experiences? Almost never.

But you have to have the ability to say “Hmm, this is like the time four years ago when X, Y, and Z happened.”

Read entire article here. Good job James.

Ep. 92: Cheat Sheet for Trading Success with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Cheat Sheet for Trading Success with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio
Cheat Sheet for Trading Success with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

In his book “Trend Commandments” Michael Covel included a “cheat sheet” for the reader. It opens up with this quote: “Golf is not safe. My grandfather died playing golf. Speaking up is not safe. People might be offended. Innovation is not safe. You’ll fail; perhaps badly. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, what are you going to do about it? Hide? Crouch in a corner and work as hard as you can to fit in? That’s not safe either. Might as well do something that matters instead.” The cheat sheet focuses on core principles of trend following trading: profit in up and down markets; no more buy & hold, analysts or news; no prediction; the big money of letting profits run; risk management; a scientific approach to trading; strong historical performance during crisis periods; no traditional diversification; ride the horse that’s winning; no government reliance; and taking advantage of mass psychology. In his last podcast before Christmas 2012 Covel gives a cheat sheet podcast of sorts too; he presents invaluable audio clips from his collection of great trend following traders. These legendary traders include William Eckhardt; Bill Dunn (talking about risk management from his perspective); and Jerry Parker (talking about the difference between mean reversion and trend following). Why is it hard to accept their principles outlined? They sound rational and reasonable, right? Covel also excerpts a speech from Elizabeth Cheval to explain her view of chronocentrism. Covel continues on with three clips from David Harding of Winton Capital Management and again asks the question, “Why don’t we all go his way?” Unfortunately, much of the wisdom illustrated is not accepted or taught in mainstream education.

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