Friday, January 24, 2020

Coming in 2020: A Video-Based Course in Trading Psychology

All of us go through changes.  The role of psychology is to direct those changes, so that we are continually growing.  There has been an explosion of outcome research documenting the effectiveness of techniques that help us change in positive ways.  Some of this research is about methods that help us change negative patterns, so that they no longer dominate our lives.  Some of this research concerns methods that help us achieve new, positive states in our lives.  The average person (and, sadly, the average coach or therapist) has limited access to this research and ends up pursuing change in inefficient and often ineffective ways.  What the research tells us is that it is relatively easy to make initial changes in our lives.  More difficult is sustaining these changes and building upon those.  That's what growth is all about.

My work places me at the center of evidence-based methods of psychological change.  I coordinate a medical school course for mental health professionals in research-backed short-term approaches to therapy.  I have also reviewed the major approaches to brief therapies and co-authored a standard textbook in the field.  Much of that work reflects my practical experience coordinating student counseling programs and delivering performance coaching help to traders and portfolio managers.  Over that time, I have focused my efforts on "therapies for the mentally well":  ways of helping normal people achieve supernormal lives and careers.

Psychology is a perennial topic in the trading world, but rarely is it possible to find solid, evidence-based, how-to methods for achieving lasting growth.  Much of what is written is well-intended advice that falls well short of helping people navigate the growth process.  It was because of this vacuum that I wrote the Daily Trading Coach book/audiobook to help traders help themselves.  But a book is not a course.  Increasingly, I've felt the desire to directly teach traders how to act as their own performance psychologists.

It's for that reason that, starting the new decade, I will be teaming up with videographer Eli Francoeur to produce a video-based course on the how-to's of trading psychology.  Accompanying the videos will be a workbook that walks traders through various exercises and activities.  The stark truth is that many traders live in areas where they do not have access to trading psychologists.  Also, many cannot afford those services.  Having taught brief therapy methods for years at the medical school in Syracuse, I am convinced that it is possible to help people help themselves with state-of-the-art psychological methods.

The video series and workbook will be posted online, available free of charge anywhere in the world for traders with online connections.  There will be no promotions or sales pitches, but lots of how-to's.  My hope is to have this available by mid-year.  I look forward to working with video whiz Francoeur in creating a resource that can help us become our best selves--in markets, and in all of life.