I am not a very good trader. Actually I am quite awful. If you switched the buy and sell buttons on my computer I would be on the Forbes 400!
I opened an account 4 years ago with $10k. Made money my first few trades and was amazed at how easy it is to trade. A few months later the account was gone. I decided that I was not going to take it and bought every book and dove deep into the world of TA. I have learned pivot trading, fibonacci levels, price action (Elliot wave next?) but can not apply any technique with sustainable success.
I opened my second account with $20k and now sit with $5k left after 18 months. My problems are in my head and I don't know how to address them. I specialize in getting stopped out to the pip and cutting my winners early. I also tend to have trades go against me as soon as I enter them leaving me on the defensive end.
I have learned to control emotions and not to overtrade. I am very patient. I hope that your forum will help me to develop a mental state that will help me to overcome my obstacles. I also need to learn a good way to journal. There are so many trading styles and I have not found a good way to record my thoughts about a trade so I could learn from my mistakes.
I am very excited about this forum and hope that you guys can help me hold on to my last $5K!
PS I have been trading 6e, 5min chart, 20ema and volume. I use channels and trendlines.
The following user says Thank You to mattinnc for this post:
Broker/Data: various CQG brokers, Interactive Brokers
Favorite Futures: 6E, ES, ZB, Forex
Posts: 9 since Oct 2010
Thanks: 4 given,
Just want to say a "hello" to the futures.io (formerly BMT) trading community.
I came upon this site while in search of a less "elite trading" (if you would) site than what I was used to and Big Mike's might fill that niche, something that is more professional. I like forums as they are a good means to share experiences and ideas, which, if you are like me, I welcome since I trade from home and don't have that daily adult interaction that helps. Reading thru a few of the intro's above, it appears that there are many who could benefit from a communal sharing of ideas and advice.
About me: I have been trading since '87 (yes, I was on the floor that day) and have traded everything from equities to futures to options. Coming off the floor was one of the biggest adjustments I have ever made in my professional life, as it is 2 different animals. And trading by computer is harder (especially since you can't see the face of the other side of your trade anymore). My current vehicles of choice for intraday trading are 6E, CL, and NQ. I trade treasuries, but that is more longer term time frame, and forex, but my forex is more automated these days than discretionary. I think it is one of the easiest markets to automate, IMO, but I am sure there are equity traders who would disagree. I am only just getting back into equities but am a little hesitant, since I haven't traded it hard since they were quoted in fractions.
Hoping this is a better environment than what I am used to.
The following user says Thank You to Lou Grant for this post:
Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.
Need help? 1) Stop changing things. No new indicators, charts, or methods. Be consistent with what is in front of you first. 2) Start a journal and post to it daily with the trades you made to show your strengths and weaknesses. 3) Set goals for yourself to reach daily. Make them about how you trade, not how much money you make. 4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance. 5) Where to start as a trader? Watch this webinar and read this thread for hundreds of questions and answers. 6) Help using the forum? Watch this video to learn general tips on using the site.
If you want to support our community, become an Elite Member.
Ditto.....Read The Disciplined Trader and Trading in the Zone by Mark Douglas..i have not had abad trade since studying these two books. Its all Mental.....you have to SEE the trade to be successful. Good luck.
The following 2 users say Thank You to WoodButcher for this post:
I hear your story and it is not unlike many. So, I am going to do you a great favor. After 5 years, the worse you should be doing is spinning your wheels. Unfortunetly, that is not the case. You are still losing..and will blow $30k with this last amount.
So, I suggest you throw out everything on your charts that is not your own design. Do not use any other persons method you have learned.
The only thing you must keep is what you have learned about yourself as a trader in the live market. Pick your best trade strategy and trade only that 1 setup.
You must keep a very detailed journal.
Make it a rule to make some kind of profit everytime you click the mouse. Also make it a rule to bail at break-even instead of a loss whenever possible. Once you decide that the trade is not winning, then get out at BE if possible. DO NOT CHANGE YOUR MIND EVEN IF PRICE COMES BACK IN YOUR FAVOR. ONCE YOU MAKE THE DECISION TO NOT LOSE MONEY ON THIS TRADE, STICK TO IT.
This will require you to throw out all pre-learned theories about statistics, risk rewards, and all the theories of trading, and just decide to trade for profits - any kind of profits, instead of losses.
Do whatever it takes to have 1 tick over minus 1 tick. Start with a very small goal of just winning (any kind of win) 2 out of 3 trades. This means take 3 trades only. win 1, lose 1...then the 3rd trade decides. You have to spin your wheels first before you can start to travel. You have to learn how to stop losing. You have to stop being comfortable losing. You do not have to make money. You have to not lose money.
I also suggest you give it a time limit. This means if you cannot be stable within a certain amount of time or dollar amount trading, (I don't mean make any money, just not losing money) then you might have to do something else.
This may not be what you want to hear. You can hate me. Trading is not for everyone.
The following 4 users say Thank You to Jaguar52 for this post:
I got interested in trading a year ago. Six months ago I began taking it very seriously and cut back hours at work in order to simulate during market hours. Three months ago I began.
I look forward to trading being my primary income source. I think this is going to be the best job on the planet. I'm grateful for places such as this to help get that edge you need to be successful at trading.
The following user says Thank You to carlp for this post:
I have had my shares of wrong turns and moments of confusion just like everybody else about my life and career. Sometimes it becomes just "too hard" to hold on to the "faith".
I was trained as an accountant with a brief exposure to the corporate life of Big 4. Six months into the job, I realized that I had a hard time getting out of bed due to....."Fatigue" I guess. I decided to quit just like when I made the decision in the middle of the preparation for Chinese national college entrance exam to come to the States to continue my further education where I believe my talent would be better expressed and explored.
It sounds easy and quite smooth now. Looking back, it was horrifying and confusing--the fear of venturing into a new territory, the fear of missing out a better opportunity back home, the fear of disappointing your loved ones and the fear of being a failure of life etc. But it was the very experience that I went ahead despite of all fears and fought my way out of the "confusion" that built my confidence and self-assurance.
When I was quitting the Big 4, I found myself drawing on the same strength. Then this strength was built on more when I “squeezed” my head into Financial Mathematics program of the University of Chicago with an accounting degree. For me it was miracle … and I was “mad” enough to believe in it.
When I was sitting in a room full of econ/math PhDs and masters to take a qualifying exam for Credit Swiss’s summer quant internships, I looked around at the people in the room and I didn’t see myself as one of them. I couldn’t picture myself working as a Financial Engineer on Wall Street playing with mathematical models every day to come up with a better way of pricing the “fancy” derivative products. I don’t identify with the “hedger s” who sell derivatives to their institutional clients while being busy at figuring out the Greeks to hedge. All of these are worthy careers for the suitable ones. It is just not me.
I am a trader. I speculate. I take directional trades of the market and profit from being right and managing my trades skillfully. Yet, with tons of student loan piling up on my back, the potential 6 figure Wall Street salary indeed sounds tantalizing, promising and safe. It’s only human nature that most of us are risk-averse and seek security more than anything else. Thinking about this, I found myself again have a hard time getting out of bed or maybe worse.
For the 1st quarter of the master program, I had to read one passage from Success Built to Last by Jerry Poras before bed every night to keep myself from going into full “depression”. “When I was a kid they used to tell me I could be anything I want to be, no matter what! Somewhere along the line, we stopped believing that we could do anything.” the quote from the movie Astronaut Farmer was something I had to repeat 50 times a day to remind me to hang on. And hanging on I did. Painful period.
It was not until the middle of the 2nd quarter that I had an epiphany. If I like trading, why don’t I trade? I had a broker account opened in 2005 but never traded anymore after I started working fulltime. Why? Why do I have to trade for a prop shop, bank or hedge fund to feel like a trader? Why do I have to trade for anyone else?
Once these thoughts were clarified, I was back in my zone. To compound the effect, I found a revolutionary prop shop that would give me an opportunity to prove my trading ability with my performance. As a reward of my superior performance proven by my track record, they will back me up with $50,000 to start my trading business.
Make no mistake. Trading is hard; intraday trading could be even harder. It was never a smooth sailing. But despite being “beat up” every day by the market, I noticed myself fighting harder and better by the days. Like Mike Bella from SMB Capital said in his book One Good Trade: “You will be the worst trader you will ever be when you start. You will only get better from there.” On top of all, I am energized, excited, inspired, creative, curious, observational, disciplined….you name it. And this state is commonly known as “in the zone”. When I am trading, I am in my zone.
In Dr. Steenbarger’s book Enhancing Trader Performance he called it “trader’s niche”, which captures your imagination, creativity, skill, talent and interest. When operating within my niche, discipline becomes natural. I need “discipline” to do my math homework or to figure out Matlab codes. Yet, I could easily spend 8 hours straight trying to figure out my trade pattern, reviewing my trading video, writing my trade journal, playing around my performance metrics, or thinking of what the F* happened that I lost on a trade but was right on the direction? “Discipline” is unnecessary since trading is fun for me. I get “high” playing around trade ideas and performance research just as much as executing and managing trades. So if your job or career doesn’t give you the “performance high” and you need tremendous “discipline” to do the “right” thing, you might be in the wrong field.
The above mentioned is just a bit about me since I want to attract similar minds as that phrase:“物以类聚, 人以群分”. I believe I could learn from every one out there. Trading is a tough journey. Let’s support each other and make it more fun and meaningful together.
The following 4 users say Thank You to teaze for this post:
No bad trades after reading 2 books. Really?! That is so difficult for me to believe, but I have not read these two books yet. I have heard them mentioned many times, though. I am going to get them and read them myself since reading this message to see if they really are that good.