(James Saft is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.)
By James Saft
(Reuters) – From Ray Dalio to Bill Gross, some of the biggest names in money management are practicing meditation.
At a conference last week in Washington, Dalio expounded on how his practice of meditation has helped his investment performance. Georgetown University, at the same conference, announced it would begin to offer a semester-long class on the discipline at its graduate business school. (link.reuters.com/kav47t)
While money managers often joke that clients are the biggest impediment to beating the market because they make emotional mistakes, the truth is that all investors, big and small, share traits which get in the way of making the best choices.
Meditation, which uses breathing and relaxation exercises in an attempt to bring stillness and repose to our usually chaotic minds, may offer some help.
“Meditation more than anything in my life was the biggest ingredient for whatever success I’ve had,” Dalio, founder of $130 billion hedge fund firm Bridgewater Associates, said in an interview at Georgetown in October. “(Meditation) gives me a centeredness, it gives me an ability to look at things without the emotional hijacking, without the ego, in a way that gives me a certain clarity.” (Related video: vimeo.com/50999847)