Mike - et al. thanks for the forum. I love it. lots of valuable stuff here.
Six months into my journey and have made all the standard mistakes: bought stuff I shouldnt have, bounced around securities, searched for holy grail, etc. Luckily (or unluckily) I have had absolutely no beginners luck whatsoever..... I only take unsuccesful trades in my strategy and then sit on my hands when the successful one i did not take rips. If there are going to be ten losers in a row - i hit all ten then give up before the eleventh rips. etc etc etc. I am sure none of this is new to people here.
I know my biggest issue is myself and my inability to remain unemotional when my strategy hits loser after loser.
I have now decided to take time away from it....close everything down, accounts platforms etc. and fix myself before coming back fresh.
Looking for recommendations on books/resources/strategies to fix my biggest enemy: my head before coming back to it. Also any other advice from those that walked away and re-tooled.
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Don't close that account, you will need your simulator. I have been at this for 2.5 years and have had the same problems you are having; I still have the same problems here and there. As a matter of fact I have passed on 3 of my set-ups this morning for God only knows what reason. If you realize that the problem is you, you have won more than half the battle. I did the same stupid crap as far as buying stuff, I am willing to bet I have spent even more ($30K) and I was still a loser. There is no method for sale that I know of that will give you nthe confidence you need to succeed; at least not for me.
As far as books, Mark Douglas' "Trading in the Zone" has helped me a lot, what has helped more is reading about other peoples struggles and the advice they received on this forum. As far as method I learned on this site that simple stupid is better. My motto is that if you can't write your strategy on a business card it is probably too complicated.
You are right: "you" are the problem and you should give youself a hard slap on the back for realizing that now rather than MUCH later as I did. We Are/can be our own worst enemies.
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thanks - ill get the book. luckily i have not spent much money (other than data feeds and a couple of indicators). one "course" that i am considering slandering pretty hard in this forum for others benefit (hesitating - if you dont have anything nice to say..etc.). I havent really bought any strategies because i wanted to prove to myself first that i could at least follow a trading plan (which i cant...obviously) on any simple strategy (winning or losing) before investing in a strategy that might ahve a positive epectancy.
Im not giving up...in fact my consistent failure is fueling my desire to succeed. quite frankly now its not about the $$$ its about proving i can do it.
I'm not long winded or a good typist but anyway I would also suggest not closing your account so you can still have real time charts to study and test on. What it comes down to is whatever stategy your using is not working. If you find something that works with consistentcy you will gain confidence to move forward. I would further suggest that you get a good understanding of price action and support/resistance these are KEY to this business. Start out with that, forget all the fancy indicators that will only serve to confuse you and you will get your feet on the ground.
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As others have said, keep the account open even if it is only minimally funded so you can continue to do sim trades.
However, you should know that sim has no impact in real world trading for most traders. Ask yourself, are you able to sim trade profitably day in/day out? Be sure you are actually tracking every single sim trade, not just the ones where you weren't "screwing around", and not just from memory. But most people can claim that even tracking every sim trade, they are sim profitable relatively easily.
Then they go cash, and blow up.
The focus is on psychology, which means you need to keep trading cash in order to keep learning or moving forward. Perhaps a futures account is too big for you and your current psychology. You might consider opening a Forex account where you can trade mini or micro lots for $1/pip (or less) to reduce or eliminate any concern of monetary loss, and just focus on trading small - but cash - until you build up confidence.
As for book recommendations, you should read all three of Brett Steenbarger's books - highly recommended, and I found them much more useful than Mark Douglas personally, although his books are highly rated as well.
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.
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watched your webinar and am following your two week advice.
will order the books - alread ordered one per ray's comments
im one of the "lucky" ones that makes same mistakes on sim as real....for whatever reason i treat sim the same
have drastically lowered my goals/expectations to build things back up. they are too lofty.
The other thing I'll tell you is that it's pretty difficult to craft a profitable strategy using fixed P/L ratios.
Successful traders generally have a profit/loss ratio of at least 2:1.
In order to achieve that, (and it's almost self fulfilling) you need to let your winners run and cut your losers short.
I highly recommend looking at your exits and how you judge when it's time to exit. Rather than base your exits off a predetermined profit amount (even if it's based on historical optimization)....it's better to base it off of some market action (reversal, re-penetration of an important level, etc). This will allow you to take advantage of some profits that may have been left on the table before.
Stop Losses can be either static or variable, but the important thing is that they recognize when things aren't going your way. I recommend using both types simulataneously (i.e. if it reaches your pain tolerance, get out. If the price action, momentum, volume, etc turn against you, get out, why wait for your stop limit).
I'm not saying that entries aren't important, but the ability to have a theoretically "unlimited" upside and a limited downside will help you greatly.
I'd rather have a strategy that loses 9 out of 10 trades, but when it wins, it wins REALLY big, than feature the opposite, a strategy that wins 9 out of 10 (with small wins) but the loser is a doozy.
That's because the big win/small loss/low percentage strategy is much more resistant to bad runs. With the small profit/high win% strategy, it only takes a few losers in a row to give you a frownie face.
The big win/small loss strategy affords you the ability to go on a bad run and recognize it (without getting knocked completely out) and determine if you need to make some adjustments or just hang tough.
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