I just watched a short clip of Ray Dalio’s interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin at the New York Times Dealbook Conference (November 12, 2013). Link here.
In the interview, Ray Dalio gave a quick overview of his Economic Machine model, and interestingly shared that meditation is the one thing that has the greatest effect on his success. Some notes on the meditation bit:
- Meditation is just a simple exercise that allows you to clear your head and brings an equanimity to everything. It eliminates the stress, it eliminates the emotions.
- I’ve been doing it for 44 years, but I do it twice a day probably a third of the time, once a day probably a third of the time, and not at all [for the rest of the time].
- It’s such a great investment. I would say that more than any other factor having any effect on my success, it’s been meditation.
- Because the equanimity, and also the creativity, because it opens literally the two sides of the brain (prefrontal cortex and the amygdala) and allows a spontaneity, a creativity, an open-mindedness, so it’s good for not only the health because if you get stress it’s a terrible thing, it’s also very good because of the clarity and you don’t get the emotional hijacking, and it’s great for creativity, so it has helped me a lot.
- It’s the biggest gift I can give to anyone.
A little bit of googling showed that Ray Dalio had made similar remarks in the past, and that he practices Transcendental Meditation. Andrew Ross Sorkin also mentioned that Ray Dalio does it twice a day, 20 minutes per session.
Mindfulness meditation is now rapidly gaining popularity, with lots of websites, mobile phone apps, meetup groups, etc., so it’s pretty interesting that Ray Dalio has been doing it for 44 years!