Hi again, Denizens. I was thinking about what to chat about in this piece when a concerning event happened its way across my Facebook feed. A member of a particular crypto group had lost some funds so I reached out to see if I could help. The lost funds are not the issue I want to discuss, it was a simple misclick that became costly.
As I spoke to this person about their crypto journey, I realised a repeating theme that was happening in 2018. People throwing their money at things they know nothing about. And I mean nothing. No understanding of the point of public addresses and private keys, third party risk, let alone technical analysis, the fundamental value of a project or its vision. As the YouTube shills continue to creep out of the cryptographic jungle, we will repeat this mantra. GET WOKER!
‘All I Know is That I Don’t Know Nothing’
It may be Tibetan monks or Buddhists or some people wiser than us believed that true knowledge means accepting that you don’t know anything.
We may be getting bullish signals from Tesla spending $1.5bn on a BTC fund or news on Wall St Bets pamping dead stocks to ‘stick it to the big end of town’ and even the US Fed printing dollars to oblivion. These signals should always be met with caution. No one is a prophet and systems are much more complex than the sum of one article looking at one aspect of a situation. If a bunch of Redditors can manipulate a market in the bright light of day without consequence, then they are just highlighting how easily it gets done in the dark. There are a great number of gears than run different financial markets and instruments.
If you want to do well investing and trading in crypto then you need to understand that crypto isn’t just a place you stick money and you will make money. It’s not a Vanguard index fund. It’s a highly volatile, speculative and mostly manipulated market. You need to create contingency plans, safety nets and also, what sucks the most, cut losses if the plan doesn’t work. No one can know all the goings on in all these markets and scenarios so don’t expect you should. Stick to what you do know and keep it simple and protected. Don’t live the dream, live the reality. GET WOKER!
Markets are places driven on emotions and emotions can get individuals in trouble if not controlled. In an era of BLM, #metoo, Antifa, Qanon, etc. we are expected to have emotional responses to everything in the world. Some of the tin foil topped fellows may even go so far as to say we are being groomed in outrage so we are less practiced in controlled, rational responses. Our brains can only take so much stimulus and so much decision making. Make sure you only make the necessary decisions and choose to let go of the unnecessary ones.
Rise above the psychological parlour games that are degrading you through your socials feeds and focus on the things that matter. GET WOKER!
Trust and Mistrust
Now to get all existential. Everything outside of your mind is noise. Your mind is made to filter out the useless noise and then make sense of the remainder in order to find a truth. Sometimes that filter gets filled with gunk, just like your vacuum. We have more noise bombarding us today and it is our filters need cleaning out more regularly. Clean your mental filter. Exercising regularly, engaging in stories (written or TV/audio – it’s important to get away from thinking about real life for a while) and socialising are all great filter cleaners. Too much time in your own head can lead to overload and poor decision making.
Sometimes the filter can’t catch everything and some noise gets in. The noises that make their way in help form you biases. It is important to understand what these biases so you can minimise the negative impact they can have on your decision making. This is where the trust and mistrust come into play.
Being that all sensory input you receive is noise, then having a good, clean, well-tuned filter is more important than reliable and trusted sources. Trust is not something to seek from a blogger, vlogger, news program or external influence. Trust is something that you must have in yourself and your ability to comprehend information.
This also extends to mistrust. In order to use the right information, you must also mistrust yourself. Understand that you are a person that can use either the wrong information, or the correct information wrongly, and make poor decisions with that. Learn what to trust in yourself and what to mistrust. GET WOKER!
Garr! You’re confusing me!
But if I have to trust myself and also mistrust myself, how do I get woker? This is where my point begins to show. You can’t get woker by trusting me, that’s for sure, you read my history, right? Not by blindly following the current YouTube influencer - this term alone should ring alarm bells and not by taking cues from Elon or Dorsey, PayPal or Fidelity or anyone else ‘leading the charge’.
Getting woker depends entirely on you and this is the whole mantra of the crypto space - having control. Control of your own wealth means having responsibility for it too. And the biggest responsibility is to understand all aspects of it, through knowledge grafted together from many sources, with as much noise filtered out as possible, and recognising and keeping in check your biases. GETTING WOKER!
This space has many new and evolving concepts and this is the greatest downfall to any newcomer. Give yourself time to ripen up before fronting up your hard earned. It is full of complexity and only more to come. Allow yourself to understand one aspect at a time rather than trying everything all at once. Understand BTC.