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Gary's Place
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Gary's Place

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Week 3 ended stronger. I am done posting numbers. The reason changes. I am not going there unless it has purpose. Otherwise it is not the right thing.

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I am getting a better feel for how a mentorship will work, and it is changing the longer I think about it. To me, it is not as easy as a checklist. It might include some, but those lists do not mean as much when they are still required in writing. There needs to be a "shift".

I mentioned to @Private Banker something that included the word "ricochet", and that word came up again today with my wife after I went over my 3rd official week's performance with her. "Happy" was also in there. "Graduation that you never knew was coming, and did not recognize until later..." was more that just came to mind this afternoon, but not really nailing it.

I wanted to send a letter of thanks to a few people, for things they did but may not have realized, but in no hurry. The words will come when they come. "Urgency" is not real.

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GaryD View Post
I sat in the DCA airport for the 6th time in about 10 days. Tough trip, little sleep, lots of stress, and a lot happened since I left Orlando. I am finally home tonight, happy to see (in order); 1) my wife, 2) my dog, 3) my trading desk.

The wife and dog are irreplaceable, the desk a non-event in the whole scheme of life. But the latter has become a place of self-discovery more than anything, causing me to question things I thought I knew, believe in things I thought I shouldn't, understand the world in ways I was previously never concerned with, see myself in ways I might never have...

For a guy who is wired as a workoholic, trading teaches a tough lesson. Learning that making money is easier when I do not care is possibly the most foreign, and yet most beneficial, advance for me. Ironically, hard work is required to trade, but unlike other specialties, it does not provide anywhere near the key to success. Engineering a profit is a foolish quest. “Beating” the market is a misnomer. Observing, understanding, listening, waiting, thinking, believing... those sound like the words of a dreamer, an artist, a religious disciple. But not what comes to mind initially with the word “trader”.

Trading shares similarities with religious pursuits. The book of Matthew tells us that faith is what moves mountains. Well, it is also what allows winners to run. Perhaps a trading journey should start with a vow of silence. I picture a room of fresh wannabe traders, dressed in robes, spread out in a large room, as if they were in a Tibetan monastery. Some day hoping to be wise enough to trade. Move that stop and get whacked with a stick...


My meeting this Sunday morning finished early, and I had 3 hours in the DCA airport before boarding time. I went looking for something healthier to eat than I have had all week, and next to the whole wheat figs bars were the magazines. I don't subscribe to anything anymore, years ago received Architectural Digest, Wired, Florida Design, Playboy, Dwell, Inc., Money, Entrepreneur, Travel, etc. But I lost interest in all of them, and I know it is related to my career fall. Today I scan the front covers in groceries and airports, and pass.

But today the magazines seemed to bet arranged to speak directly to me. Reading left to right, the lineup was;

Fortune - “Hostess – Bankrupt...Again”
Money - “How to Reach $1 Million"
ID - “The Secret Files of My Personality – Who Am I?”

I bought #3. If I am going to trade full time, that is the most relevant.

Not what I searched for, there was something else, but I found this instead.

It had to do with monks.

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The words will come when they come. "Urgency" is not real.

Fantastic post

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  #75 (permalink)
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I went through all of the PMs, emails, Skypes, etc related to the mentoring, took all relative correspondence from each trader and made a Word document of it, including photos, etc. This will become your permanent record with me.

I also made a spreadsheet as a summary view, includes contact information, location, markets traded, checked off completed items, special notes, how many live calls we have had together. So far only two have heard from me, so I have a ways to go. There are a total of 13, feels lucky already.

I am thinking about this a lot, as I am in the gym, driving, biking. How does something like this work? You think it is going to be a very mechanical set of rules, and maybe it is, maybe not. But more important after any of that is a state of mind. And if it seems tough to change your own, imagine the challenge of changing someone else's. Turn that table around, and if I don't have complete trust in that person, I am out of there.

Just as there are so many versions of meditation, there are so many ways to look at a market. No one thing will save us, any more than selecting the right club makes that shot in golf. Put the same set of clubs in everyone's hands, put them all on the same course... then what makes the difference?

Now get to the top 3 of those, now what is going to do it? And that is just the futures.io (formerly BMT) version, the world is a big fucking place...

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I called my wife over to look at a photo I took recently. "Don't you love how the blue of the Asian session brings out the blue in his eyes?" She just looked at me...


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Jason Rogers View Post
Good one! Where did you read it?

It was from a friend.

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Another one of my favorite old posts I read again this morning. Roughly a year and a half ago. Cleaned up a few typos as I read. This was a milestone in my psychology. Not necessarily the turning point, but definitely an important realization that has stayed with me.



GaryD View Post
I took my dog to the lake, but there was a block party going on, so we made a lap and returned to the house. Not the best atmosphere for contemplation. I was going to go the the gym, but I can do that anytime. I decided on my mountain bike instead.


I pedaled into a park, just followed the winding paths around the lakes, across bridges, not really paying attention to where I was. The ride had two purposes; to aide my current cleanse, and to seek an answer to the question of the day. Where I went did not really matter, as long as my legs did not wear out.


I wound up coming out on a street I had not seen for years. It is street that I have somewhat avoided. My wife and I had separated years ago, and I was directly in front of the house that she moved into during that time. Not that the outcome was bad, but the memories of that time were not so good. I took a deep breath, realized it did not bother me anymore, smiled and continued down the road.

It ended at a cemetery. I would have normally made a U-turn, but today I rode right through the gate.


What struck me first; This is where we are all going to end up.

Whatever we choose to do with our lives, we will most likely make our final statement on a slab of stone with our names engraved.

Success or failure, does that really even matter? Isn't either one better, than not trying?


The cemetery split into many roads, and taking the first right I saw a big headstone with my last name on it. I slowed and circled for awhile, chuckled at myself for wondering if I was meant to ride that way today.

But since I was riding looking for answers anyway, let's go with it: It's the future, I am dead, and there before me is my grave. I am the only visitor that I can see in all directions. It's a beautiful Sunday afternoon, the rest of the world is out living.

What would I want my epitaph to say? The topic of the day was "fear".

“He was fearful and proud of it”?

No, but “Tenacious no matter what” did not seem like it either. “Managed risk effectively”?

I'm way off base, what does that have to do with the meaning of life?

What if it only listed one-word attributes, what would they be? Conservative, Dangerous, Bold, Reserved, Calculating, Patient?

No.


“Died Happy” is what I decided I wanted, laughed at myself a little and rode on.

“So what does that mean, Gary, and what in the world does it have to do with your trading right now?”, is what I was saying to myself.


I rode all through the cemetery, roads crisscrossing back and forth, set my target as a hilltop so I could really work my legs. Along the way I read the names, some a deep part of Orlando history, others interpreted as a continuation of what I was there to learn.


“Hurt” was one of the names that caught my attention. That is how the fear started. I had no fear to speak of, until I learned that not having it, hurt. In that respect, maybe fear is just one way of learning. You put your hand on a hot stove, it burns, you try not to do that again. But it does not mean we stay afraid of the stove for the rest of our lives. We just learn how to not get hurt. Fear, or maybe it's better called Respect, or even, Wisdom, are mechanisms through which we do that.


I saw “Price”. Oh, now don't try to teach me trading 101. Of course it's price “action”, but price itself does not matter. “Weeks”. Yes, I agree the greater timeframes can provide the best S/R analysis for bigger moves... (I had turned my internal dialog back to something silly, not really comfortable with contemplating my own mortality for very long, I guess.)


I reached the top of the hill and saw a section that was an island between roads, with small headstones that were noticeably more decorated than most of the rest. There was a green marker sign on a metal post “Baby Zone”. I could almost feel some of the pain of their parents' losses. My circling started again, slowly reading names and dates of those who never got the opportunity to even try. I have an opportunity, I should not waste it. Having found myself more emotional than usual lately, I started to tear up some. I pushed over the top of the hill, picked up some speed which helped dry my eyes.


“Back on topic, Gary. It's getting late”.


As hard as I have worked to become a successful trader, what does it matter if I am not happy? “Fear” should not be a part of it. Neither should recklessness, but that is not the trader I am today. If I feel I am ready to take a step forward, I should.

Yes, I made a lot of stupid trading mistakes in the past. So what? I learned from those mistakes, I studied, I practiced, I have done all of the things I can think of to learn not to touch that hot burner again. Once that lesson is learned, what are the chances I will walk up to a stove and just grab the burner to see what it is like?

Virtually, none.

Not today. Not as the trader I have trained myself to be.


I started to feel a sense of being on the right path to what I set out to discover, and bumped my bike into a high gear to really get a workout as I headed home. As the sweat started to roll, I thought of a recent comment about my age and how maybe I should not spend so much time in front of the screens. I joked back at my similarly-aged colleague, “and the same with your chasing pussy, but what else are we going to do?”


I am not ready to die, actually believe I have a long time ahead of me. If I want to be a trader, if that is where my passion is, why even consider not doing it? We get one shot at life, but sometimes many shots at success.


I have skills now, that I have earned, and I spent the time to develop those skills so that I could become a full-time trader, so that I could make some significant money, and have a chance to feel that I could right some of the financial wrongs of my past. That is not a “bad” goal. I might argue there are no “bad” goals, as long as it is what gives you purpose, drive, a sense of pride and accomplishment.


To be “happy”, we must have a purpose, we must feel we are delivering on that purpose. Having goals makes us feel alive. Reaching our goals gives us satisfaction. To me, that is living.



Last edited by GaryD; August 25th, 2013 at 11:32 AM.
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GaryD View Post
Another one of my favorite old posts I read again this morning. Roughly a year and a half ago. Cleaned up a few typos as I read. This was a milestone in my psychology. Not necessarily the turning point, but definitely an important realization that has stayed with me.

This was THE One Post that haunted me for many many days after I read it... almost as if you had sealed it with a tag 'Important' and labeled thus so that it found the same amount of importance in a reader across continents and far apart from you.

There were many subtle, grave, spirited teachings in that one single post; and the conveyance was poetic.

You have come a full circle, Gary and journaling starts and ends with you. For to read your journal, for every trader, nay, me, is almost to get into that subtle stream that is undergoing change, seeking direction but not finding it really, and then WHAM!ming it with your impactful post to drive home some point - some solutions rise out of your 'ramblings' to questions that have been haunting me for days, perhaps years!

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I am still lacking email addresses from a lot of people, skype names from three, and quiz answers from more than half.

Chop chop or be chopped.

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