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How do you overcome your boredom?


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How do you overcome your boredom?

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  #1 (permalink)
Spokane Valley, WA, USA
 
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I want to say firstly that I did do a search on this subject and although I found a similar thread, it was only similar in title. So let me first start by saying that I am a beginner. I have tried daytrading in the past but I was naive an clueless. I read the advice of others and then did exactly the opposite; did exactly what they said I would do. It was exciting and it made me nervous. The potential of big money and a lifestyle to go with it. A career that I could do into my 80s was also appealing.

I had to make some big mistakes and lose a lot of money before I changed my mentality and approach. Now it seems I have the opposite problem and here is where I would like some advice. Currently I am trading in a paper account using the ES. I find it boring and mundane! When I have to practice self-control and restraint, it's not nearly as exciting? Did any of you have the same experience? I find myself getting bored. I have looked at the chart every which way and drawn all the trend lines I can. That ticker is moving so damm slow that it is driving me crazy. When I use the NT playback feature, I predict the market movement and then turn up the speed to 300-5000 times! I wonder what you guys do to not got crazy? How can one just sit in front of a screen and watch this paint dry? Slight exaggeration but hopefully get what I'm saying. Thanks for the read!

John

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  #3 (permalink)
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I think that comes with paper trading... if you feel bored using real money, then either your very good, or have way too much.

I have approximate answers, possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty of different things. But I'm not absolutely sure of anything and there are many things i don't know anything about.
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  #4 (permalink)
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You may have something there. I listened to an Al Brooks webinar on Mikes's site and Mike specifically asks him about how he feels about paper trading and he discourages it. He believes that one should trade real money as soon as they are competent. He also mentions that perhaps one shouldn't start with the ES. He mentioned a handful of EFT's and such. I will have to consider this I think.

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  #5 (permalink)
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You will not learn paper trading the same way you would with real money. Starting small is key because you need to expect to lose while you learn, so limit those losses. ETF's and micro futures may be a good place. although one mans dime is another mans dollar you don't need to "overpay" to learn...

"There is something irreversible about acquiring knowledge; and the simulation of the search for it differs in a most profound way from the reality."
-Oppenheimer

I have approximate answers, possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty of different things. But I'm not absolutely sure of anything and there are many things i don't know anything about.
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  #6 (permalink)
Bundeburg
 
 
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I have a slightly different view on this.

While you trade you will experience a variety of responses (emotions/feelings/thoughts) to the events taking place. Nothing happening being one of those events. The level of risk one is taking will change the nature of the responses, most obviously their intensity. The key in trading is that one can respond to different events but one must stop oneself from trading off plan because of them.

So I regard all responses that might cause me to stray from the path of righteousness as chances to study myself and improve my performance. Mindfulness and a trading diary are a key tools to perceive what is taking place in your mind and delay/prevent actions that might take you off the path. Mindfulness helps most when you are becoming overexcited (a big position and you get hit by fear or greed and move off your rational sensible plan) but when you become aware of boredom you need to deal with it too.

One way is to find ways to stimulate your mind. Maybe some music? Maybe 5 minutes playing your game of choice. Maybe a timed break where you read or do some exercise. I have found that setting a kitchen timer or your pc equivalent for a period less than the time it would take for the next set-up to develop to be an effective tactic. Its important not to be so distracted that you miss the next set-up or that you come back "high" and take an impulsive trade without qualification and planning.

So, mindfulness to detect arising responses including boredom, labelling breathing and mindfulness to reduce overstimulated states, and timed alternative activities when you're too relaxed.

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  #7 (permalink)
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Focus man.

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  #8 (permalink)
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We are in the doldrums of summer as well. Things should start moving more quickly in September or so

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  #9 (permalink)
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You are bored? Good. This will teach you patience.

If you are trading for "action", "fast money", "bottles and models", and the like you are setting yourself up for failure. Learn to trade only when there is great opportunity. Find your accomplishment in the process of trading not in the outcome.

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  #10 (permalink)
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eudamonia View Post
You are bored? Good. This will teach you patience.

If you are trading for "action", "fast money", "bottles and models", and the like you are setting yourself up for failure. Learn to trade only when there is great opportunity. Find your accomplishment in the process of trading not in the outcome.

Nicely put...

I have approximate answers, possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty of different things. But I'm not absolutely sure of anything and there are many things i don't know anything about.
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  #11 (permalink)
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Remember, when you trade, you should be in zone. That means, you are focused only on market. If you can not do that, you have to change market, trading style or system. In trading is many many ways how to trade and 1st your job would be find that way, with which you be in the zone!
You must your weaknesses cover with your strenghts....

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.
Aristotle
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  #12 (permalink)
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Good trading is boring, add more contracts, automate, deal with it. I hate cold calling in sales but it's a necessary evil like the CIA.

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  #13 (permalink)
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Yes. I'm new too and I got what u mean.

Sometime I may even take a nap when I know there will be no singal in the next 10-15 mins.

Sometimes I get very nervous when I see my position isn't go to the way I want. And hope the time can run faster.

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  #14 (permalink)
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You need to find something to do while you're trading real time that isn't too mentally draining on a different screen or near your computer. At the point you're trading real money it should become so monotonous that you know exactly what you're looking for. It should be second nature. Often times listening to music, working out, posting, or playing guitar is good too if you're in chop. You want to look over at the screen every minute or so for a good setup continually focused, often times you'll see the potential for a setup which should make you stay tuned. I only really trade for two hours a day after 9:30 because that's all I ever really needed. However, you never ever want to enter a trade late if you missed the entry while doing something else, it's just something you have to accept.

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  #15 (permalink)
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pricestudent View Post
I wonder what you guys do to not got crazy? How can one just sit in front of a screen and watch this paint dry? Slight exaggeration but hopefully get what I'm saying. Thanks for the read!

John

Hi John!

I think the problem with you is that you don't have exact system of rules. So I suppose you didn't test it either. Therefore if you didn't test it, then you can not know what results you may have.
And from there is all the mess you described.
I trade since 2008 and all struggles I had in the beginning were because of lack of exact rules and system.

Let me take for example the market dynamic for the last 3 days in DAX index. It is obviously that the price is in a range of approximately 100points, and through the day I can see only 2-3 trades that I can take, but are not very good as setups and the risk/reward is not good either. So my choice is to enter and risk my stops to be hit for more than a 50%, or wait for the price to set higher ot lower price and start a decent trend where I can make better trades with higher probability of success.
For me trading is all about the money and I trade to make money. If I want to lose money I prefer to be on women or something else, but definitely not on the market on purpose.

So you should ask yourself, why are you on the market and what is your goal.
If you wanna make money, than even if it is boring this is not exuse to make mistakes.
And focus on the profit you can make if you follow your rules, and don't allow loses take control over you, which will happen if you don't follow your rules.


Well in the days when there is no volatility for the half of a day you can watch fashion tv, or play some game.
Even now I watch fashion tv in youtube

Choose more volatile market like TF or YM. They make decent moves almost every day and is never boring to trade them....or is never boring to me.

Hope that helps.

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  #16 (permalink)
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I agree with others that boredom comes with the territory, and have learned to live with it only to the extent it's an occasional hazard of doing business during the session I habitually trade (i.e., I look past it to end of session). When bored setups often behave like mirages, most imaginary while the real ones seeming to appear suddenly out of thin air right in front of us. Keeping end of session in sight seems to help in a couple of ways, first by helping one stay alert and focused on price pattern in the meantime rather than obsessing on the thought "I'M BORED!"--maintaining the effort not a minute longer than end of session, inaction not that big a price to pay compared say to losing one's shirt on an impulsive trade. Second, one survives boredom by learning not to let it turn into negative emotion, which besides souring us on trading more often than not can lead to over trading and hence frittering away profits. In other words, at the first sign boredom is turning into frustration it's time to quit for the day, IMO "the power of quitting" no less an edge than any other.

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  #17 (permalink)
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Porn

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  #18 (permalink)
Spokane Valley, WA, USA
 
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Well, I would certainly agree that boredom could definitely lead to overtrading. Maybe it is my nature but sure; I want things to happen faster than they do. It's probably just a maturity thing and provided I can overcome this, it should be okay. I think to that it might help me to keep an eye on more than one instrument at a time. If nothing else, just to keep myself busy.

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  #19 (permalink)
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Play Poker on another PC. Uses similar concepts.

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  #20 (permalink)
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If I see nothing happening in any market, metals, ags, bonds, currencies, indexes, then as I do my scanning around the screen a few times and there's nothing happening, then I don't get bored, I just get tired. It gets monotonous and I take a break, move around, make tea, find a snack, sometimes I take a quick nap, come back and see that I missed nothing. If the lack of momentum anywhere continues, I go do errands on my list. Sometimes I'll return at 3:30pm ET and that's when some activity starts, but I'll rarely enter a trade since much of the day was no follow thru so the likely action late is the same. Sometimes I'm wrong, but I am happy because I followed my plan I and know 100% for certain that no action in markets only lasts at the most, 2 days, maybe 2.5. At night if there's no action in 2 hours, I'll shut it down also. I used to keep watching until too late at night, but that messes up the next morning and that's when I found I missed some good action. I never force a trade any more, I learned that the hard way. I accept it now that I can not create anything in the market, action, momentum, whatever, I'm just an observer....

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  #21 (permalink)
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In response to those who say "do something else", in my own experience (Spider Solitaire and RC helicopters favourite distractions in the early days) it's better (more profitable) to stay focused on the job.

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  #22 (permalink)
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i have been thinking about this alot. my mind wanders so easy 'waiting' for a trade to appear.
and i think i came up with something.
i think the boredom comes in because the trader (me, in this case) doesnt have the setup that i am taking down to a science. i am still using my own bias in there.
i am not confidently waiting for 'my' setup to take shape so i can trade it.

how does a weak setup lead to boredom ? i see it as not having structure. i am sitting there waiting for something to occur but there is not really sure of what it is i am waiting for (but i think i will know it when i see it mentality which is dangerous)

does this sound plausible to anyone ?

good trading. lf

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  #23 (permalink)
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As a long term trader, we always have the option to take a few days off to renew and rejuvenate when we feel stale and are tired of searching for the next holy grail stock.

In the past I used to go onto chat areas and I would see day traders chatting but more importantly keeping each other apprised of intra-day stocks. One of the problems with trading on-line is that it is a solo job for the most part, especially if you are a single person and not part of a financial team (I am guessing there).

As a single person, one is limited as far as how many new opportunities you can find since you are always worried about missing the timing of your bread and butter play. Music does help fill the void sometimes but it can be a lonely occupation.

I saw those guys having fun chatting back and forth and each following 1-3 stocks and helping each other out by alerting when they saw an opportunity unfolding. Now these were intra-day swing plays on stocks I have no idea if you are doing options, futures, Forex or whatever and if this can apply to you, but if you can link up with a couple of other traders with similar interests and use something like SKYPE to link you together then you can feed off each other.

As a long term trader I do this though it is not critical as far as timing is concerned. I have a select few people that I "talk stocks" with once a week...to share opportunities and support each other.... it does work...everyone needs some support.

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  #24 (permalink)
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To alleviate boredom I do a light workout with free weights and still watch the screens.

Agree with Al Brooks; paper trading is for just getting the execution mechanics down. Then go live but small...

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Legendary Market Wizard
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If my current strategy wasn't showing any entries, I would look for other edges. I evolved my strategy over thousands of hours this way. It takes a lot of time and patience. Now I'm pretty set in what I do and if nothing is there, then I go to the gym or do something else that doesn't have to do with trading.

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  #26 (permalink)
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Massive l View Post
If my current strategy wasn't showing any entries, I would look for other edges. I evolved my strategy over thousands of hours this way. It takes a lot of time and patience. Now I'm pretty set in what I do and if nothing is there, then I go to the gym or do something else that doesn't have to do with trading.

A good golf tutor once explained to me that between golf shots in a match he only ever focussed on the trees, the birds and the bees, never on the golf.

Travel Well
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  #27 (permalink)
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If I'm ever feeling uninterested in doing things I normally would find interesting it's usually a result of low serotonin or dopamine levels. A good way to jump start the brain into getting back into a normal state is to simply exercise a little bit. It could be as simple as lifting some weights and doing a set or two. After exercising the blood flow increases, endorphins are released, and mood generally rises. Drinking a lot of water helps too. It's always good to keep track of these things like heart rate, dehydration, hungriness, exhaustion, blood sugar etc. It doesn't have to be precise but it can be the difference between sitting there staring at the screen or being productive and doing something interesting.

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  #28 (permalink)
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IMO, you're bored because the way you trade is not your trading sradingtyle.
Also, trading stocks that have a 3 minute chart moving in .05 increments wont
be as exciting as one moving in .25 clips. You're probably trading names that
don't have an underlying catalyst either.

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  #29 (permalink)
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I feel like the majority of time spent at the computer, you are not actually trading, only looking for setups(or should be). So boredom could definitely be a factor if you don't enjoy watching the markets. You might have some emotions well up inside you, but excitement would not be the emotion I am looking for when I put on a trade anyways. So it's obviously about balance.

Day trading also just might not be the fit for you. Swing trading allows you to spend minimal "chart staring" time if you are proficient, and allows you to place entries, adjust stops, and just get on with your life.

As for me I set timers so I can walk away from the screen, play around on the internet, read etc. without missing setups.

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