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Some thoughts I’m having about how to succeed in trading that I trust help and serve your trading journey…
1. Consistency matters more than talent… I kept showing up no matter what, so I develop ‘talent’, which is really me working for years to get great at this one thing.
2. Feedback from a trader who is ahead of you on this journey is gold, so I shut up and accept all of it with gratitude… There are actually people who care enough to help me correct my faulty trajectory.. appreciate them especially when the feedback is not what you want to hear!
3. Whinging has to be limited to 1 or 2 minutes and then get back to building something that you love… I am a fairly negative person, so I’ve learned to focus on what’s working and what works, rather than all the things that aren’t how I want them.
4. If you can’t measure and analyse your trading performance, you are not a fully functioning trader… So, I got great at performance metrics, and I still search for traders I respect to study their trading and thinking strategies. I do this until I become great at it (never), and I love it. Because I see how many traders have to quit, broke, it seems the obvious thing to do.
5. Study. I still study. I study systems. I study patterns. I study thinking. I study strategies. I study myself. Over and over again. There’s no magic, just learned competence.
6. Think big… I set my sights on ambitious goals, not just in trading, anywhere in my life, and study and take tiny steps to make them reality.
7. Mediocre results come when we focus on ‘getting it right’… I never wanted mediocrity. I want excellence. So, if the majority of traders are worrying about avoiding mistakes, looking good to others, and never being wrong… I trained myself to not worry about that stuff. I changed my emotional soup, my values, my beliefs so that making mistakes meant progress, and that if someone judged me, it said more about them than me, that the only way to learn it is to lean in and push through no matter how painful.
8. Support others; champion others; give to others… So easy to be a selfish, self-involved superwanker. The world doesn’t need more of them, so don’t be that.
9. Be loyal. When someone makes a mistake, stick by them. We have all stuffed up.
We’re only going as far as our efforts. We can’t get great results with bullshit excuses.
We aren’t fooling anyone hiding and delaying our epic.
No one will do it for you. No one will come and rescue you, even if you are homeless on the streets. Nothing happens until you make it happen.
Blaming delays success and hurts someone, even if it’s only yourself.
There’s always a way.
Not a complete list of my focus, but hopefully gives you an insight into what it takes..
What’s one thing you’ve learned has helped you succeed?
A sneak peak into Behavioural Biases that if not made consciously aware of will unconsciously trick traders into making imprudent trading decisions that can lead to losses.
Professor Richard Thaler is one of the leading figures in the Behavioral Finance academic world and has been credited with the term “Mental Accounting”. Here is one of my favourite examples used to describe the bias.
The Man in the Green Bathrobe
A couple go to Las Vegas on honeymoon and after an enjoyable evening of dinner, theater and some bedroom activity Joe decides to soak in the night air by smoking a cigar on the balcony of their suite. After what seemed like a short break Joe discovers that Sophie is fast asleep. On his way over to kiss his gorgeous wife good night Joe puts his hands in the pocket of his green hotel bathrobe and discovers a casino chip in his pocket. It has the number 17 on it and an inner voice starts speaking to him, “Joe, this is the one.” Without wasting any time, Joe is off to the casino with his lucky number 17 chip.
He puts the $5 chip on 17 and up comes 17. Next spin he puts his winnings on 17 and again it comes up. Joe repeats this routine a number of times until he reaches the maximum bet the casino will take; he now has $268 million riding on 17 and after what seems like an eternity the ball lands on 18. Joe has lost it all. With the little bit of energy left in him, he walks to his room and flops on the bed. His beautiful young wife Sophie wakes up from her sleep and asks Joe where he has been. He responds that he was gambling, so she asked how he did, and he said “not too good; I lost $5.” This example illustrates how we compartmentalize our finance. Joe put the $5 and then the subsequent $268 million in a separate compartment from his wealth. To him it was never really his. The very same kind of mental accounting happens when we receive a refund from the taxman that was somewhat unexpected. Instead of absorbing the new money into our existing pot, we somehow see this new money as a windfall and worthy of extravagant spending, which is different from how we would treat our own money. I hope you can start to see how this error in judgement could have disastrous effects when approaching trading. I am sure none of you have treated the profits made on a trade as winnings to have a full go with.
From the wonderful Matthew Church.. on a sad day like today, another terror attack in London, a little bit of gentleness will do us all good.. xx
All of your ‘stuff’ is okay. 🙂
Consider this your friendly reminder… you’re wonderful. All of ‘you’ is wonderful.
The ‘f*ck you’ moments.
The complete certainty.
All of it… is all good.
Shit will happen – whatever ‘mission’ you’re on (for now, it’s changes, and that’s okay too).
It’s all micro, in the scheme of things.
Oceans rise. Empires fall.
And, you will be okay. <3
Embrace the presence of it all. ESPECIALLY for men. No ‘stoic is strong’ (it’s not) ‘I am on mission’ (whatever that means) ‘I am emotionally consistent’ (you’re not, nobody is) ‘I don’t have time to feel this’ (you do) ‘the pain is good’ (the pain isn’t anything, it just ‘is’).
You’re all good.
Have a cry in the bathroom in the office (I did), pick yourself up (and dust off the hairs without wondering whose they are or where they came from), fix your hair (it looks great, by the way), check your eyes (don’t worry, nobody can tell) and keep moving.