You have studied many methods and learned many rules. But that does not make you a trader. Learning how to trade is about the mechanics, the technical analysis that most put 99% of their focus on because they believe that in fact that is trading. But it’s not. Anyone can learn a set of rules or principles. And you have done that. Probably more than a few times. You learned one set of rules and when that did not work you learned another set of rules (method) and when that did not work, you yet again learned another set of rules, guidelines, or method, and yet here you are still in the same place as when you started.

Have you ever asked yourself why? Are all the ways and methods of trading failures? Not likely as there are many ways to trade. We know from experience that simpler is always better, but that does not make or break a trader.

What makes or breaks a trader learning how to become a trader not learning how to trade. What’s the difference? Learning how to trade is learning rules and concepts. Learning how to become a trader is learning how to control your own behavior. It’s learning how to act in your own best interest. Not some of the time, or most of the time. All of the time.

If you want consistent results you have to have a consistent approach. Your rules do not change, but how you apply them, how you follow them changes almost by the minute. You have felt it many times. Your rules say to stay on the sidelines, but the market is moving, 3, 5 8 pts and you are not in. You feel the incredible urge to get in the market. There is internal conflict as you can see the market is moving and you can imagine all the money you could have made. But your rules say no, not right now. So what do you do? You click the mouse anyway and get in “just this once”. Right? I will only take a few ticks you say. I just want to see…..when you start talking to yourself like that you are about to make a serious mistake. And that mistake is you are about to break your rules.

It has been said we do not trade the market, we trade ourselves. That is 100% accurate. It is not you against the market, it is you against yourself. When there is nothing to do, can you do nothing? If we are all honest, that’s a real tough one to adhere to. But that is what professionals do. They do nothing when there is nothing to do. They follow their rules no matter what even if the market moves 10 pts without them. Professional traders do not try to get every move.

Your rules define when certain market conditions exist, when the odds are dramatically in your favor. Breaking your rules automatically puts you in a low probability trade. Yet all of us have done it. Why? Because it’s human nature to act impulsively. That is what makes trading difficult, not the learning how to trade, but the learning how to control your own behavior when the market is moving in real time. It’s not about having a set of rules, it’s about staying disciplined and patient, and following those rules no matter what. And that is where most trader fail.

Learning how to trade, that can be done fairly quickly. Learning how to become a trader, that takes time to learn the skill and discipline that separate the amateurs from the professionals. If you are not consistent it’s time to take a look not only at the methods you apply, but how you apply them. If you look, there’s a pattern there, to both your profits and your losses. And that pattern is in your behavior.



Discipline and Patience

February 21, 2017

Every day intelligent traders blow out their accounts. Why? Because trading is not about how smart you are. Intelligence and trading success do not go hand in hand. First and foremost you have to know what a high probability opportunity looks like. It’s visual. You can’t “think” a trade. You can only “see” a trade. […]

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Time to Evolve

February 12, 2017

The only constant is change. This moment is unique and none other will ever match it. From the moment we are born, we are growing, growing older. It’s not optional. It happens whether we want to or not. Growth sometimes is painful, sometimes it’s fun. Sometimes it’s almost unnoticeable until you see someone after they […]

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Life and trading

April 2, 2014

It’s been a while since I have written anything on the blog. The reason? LIFE! Sometimes life just gets in the way of trading. Things happen. Family issues arise. Health concerns for yourself or someone close. The death of a family member or close friends. This is life and there are times when it is […]

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