The Art of Sitting Still and Waiting

In Reminiscences of a Stock Operator, the author describes how a stockThe Art of Sitting Still and Waiting speculator is much more likely to make money and to actually keep it if they learn how to sit still. Throughout this very informative narrative text, the author describes his experience on Wall Street around the turn of the century. That would be the last century, not the more recent one. Anyway, the book describes his experiences from age fourteen into his later years, going into heavy detail about human nature and emotional frailty and the influences of men.

There is an art to sitting still and waiting. It is almost a godlike quality, to be able to do this. Human nature rebels against this quality, since it demands that we use wisdom rather than unnatural methods. Sitting still and waiting breeds character in that it requires the human to be discerning as to WHY they are not charging forward with action right away. There is a subtlety to timing. Correct timing is the key to making sure that things go off smoothly and as they should. In the book mentioned above, sometimes the stock operator would sit and watch the markets for weeks or months on end without doing anything. If the market was not right for trading, then it would be unwise and therefore a waste of money to trade during that time.

Doesn’t this principle ring true for different areas of your life? Whenever you have tried to use unnatural methods before their time, doesn’t the result become much worse than if you had just let it be? Sometimes faith is not so much a belief in a higher power, but in the timing of nature and goodness.

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