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FOMO from PM perspective: Why we sometimes act like idiots and lose money on crypto trading

Project Management, or PM for short, is profession that deals with, you guessed it, projects. One possible definition of project:

Project is unique in that it is not a routine operation, but a specific set of operations designed to accomplish a singular goal. So a project team often includes people who don’t usually work together – sometimes from different organizations and across multiple geographies.“[1]

That means that team management is very important. And teams are made of people, individuals with their own personalities and emotions. One of basic emotions that gets in the way of project execution is fear. Fear from various stakeholders and with different influence on the project. Fear management, both personal for project manager and for rest of project stakeholders is very important and project manager has to know how to recognize fear and how to deal with it. Since being in crypto, I have heard a lot and seen a lot of fear, most prominently in two areas with their own crypto definition in short message (as with most crypto things, really):

1. FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out

2. FUD – Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt

This article is about first one as it is about one type of behaviour, while second one is more complex with more variables and will be covered in future article(s).

First, let`s define fear.

“Fear is a feeling induced by perceived danger or threat that occurs in certain types of organisms, which causes a change in metabolic and organ functions and ultimately a change in behavior, such as fleeing, hiding, or freezing from perceived traumatic events. Fear in human beings may occur in response to a specific stimulus occurring in the present, or in anticipation or expectation of a future threat perceived as a risk to body or life. The fear response arises from the perception of danger leading to confrontation with or escape from/avoiding the threat (also known as the fight-or-flight response), which in extreme cases of fear (horror and terror) can be a freeze response or paralysis.”[2]

So, what does that mean for FOMO?

Experiment after clinical and real world life experiment has demonstrated beyond all doubt that when human experience fear, stress hormones gets released. Those hormones are secreted mostly by amygdala and trigger fight-flight-hide response[3]. In another words, humans perceive the danger and within miliseconds decide if they are going to fight with it, run or hide. During that time all other bodily functions are neglected, hunger, pain, sadness, happiness do not exist as it is our existence in question. Direct result of this is that IQ falls to child level and our abilities to rationally judge reality diminish considerably. FOMO is really perfect example. Modern life has dictated our survival to be based on money (in the old days hunters would hunt, gatherers would gather and that is how they would eat and survive) and without it we are unable to function in human society. This playing with money is basically playing with one`s existence and when that is threatened, we act like idiots because this response is not suitable for sitting in front of the computer but running from lion on planes of Africa and experience inner turmoil. In that scenario, we do not need higher cognitive abilities, and in front of the computer we need them.

Even more simple, if you, reader, think that you will miss out on profit while everybody else is going to make money, your survival instinct kicks in (it does not matter that you are at home and safe) and it will compel you to do what it takes to survive. And since your attention is glued to screen, you brain interprets that as source of salvation or damnation.

It is very simple process, really, but extremely difficult to recognize (IQ falls in that situation) and even harder to change without a plan to do it. And it is hard to make a plan using flawed remembered data from the times of stress. Is there solution for this? Of course and it is very simple: make a plan and stick to it.

Yeah, I already hear you saying something like “how the hell am I supposed to make a plan based on false data and with no knowledge of principles involved”. And you are right. Solution is simple, making it reality is not. There are a lot of useful information online and it will require some digging and doing your own research. Or you could just follow series of articles that will deal with precisely that: how to make a plan and stick to it. Lot of moving parts and psychological tricks, that is why series of articles is needed.

Disclaimer: I have neither time nor energy to debate with creationists and similar Evolution Theory deniers. To those I would say two things:

1. Scientific theory is not the same as when you and I talk and one says “I think BTC will be worth $10,000 by beginning of 2018. That is my theory based on this or that article.” To which other interlocutor says: “I think that BTC will crash because it will be too regulated to serve it`s original purpose of security and transparency based on this or that article, that is my theory”. That is what we say and our theories are worthless when scientific method is applied:
“The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry is commonly based on empirical or measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning”[4] And according to that, Scientific Theory is:
“A scientific theory is an explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can be repeatedly tested, in accordance with the scientific method, by using a predefined protocol of observations and experiments Established scientific theories have withstood rigorous scrutiny and are a comprehensive form of scientific knowledge”[5] So, keep that in mind. Evolution Theory is Scientific Theory and it is strong and backed by evidence.

2. If you do not believe point 1., type in Google “observed instances of speciation” and may your journey begin.

Peace and love.

[1] https://www.pmi.org/about/learn-about-pmi/what-is-project-management

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear

[3] http://beforeyoutakethatpill.com/blog/2014/10/27/stress-hormones-and-the-fear-response-in-survival/

[4] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

[5] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_theory

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