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Trading is boring, at least for me


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Trading is boring, at least for me

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  #1 (permalink)
 ctmvas 
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Staring in front of my monitor the whole day is difficult for me to do. Itís boring. It bores me to death. Itís so frustrating because it takes 1 second to backtest a strategy, but then when itís time to trade, and I have to sit in front of my monitor for 8 hours waiting every 5 minute bar to complete. It simply sucks. Maybe I lack patience.

The worst part is when I will leave my desk to do something else because Iím not seeing any opportunities, or I donít foresee any opportunities because the way the chart looks, and I will come back to my desk and notice a move a move I missed. This blows.

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 Big Mike 
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Make some changes.

Only trade the first hour and last hour of the day, for example. Rest of the day, go live your life or work on more productive things (still related to trading).

Create alarms and alerts to notify you of activity you want to participate in.

If you are consistently profitable, add another market or two to the mix.

If you are consistently profitable, up your size. This will make things more "interesting".

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 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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ctmvas View Post
Staring in front of my monitor the whole day is difficult for me to do. Itís boring. It bores me to death. Itís so frustrating because it takes 1 second to backtest a strategy, but then when itís time to trade, and I have to sit in front of my monitor for 8 hours waiting every 5 minute bar to complete. It simply sucks. Maybe I lack patience.

The worst part is when I will leave my desk to do something else because Iím not seeing any opportunities, or I donít foresee any opportunities because the way the chart looks, and I will come back to my desk and notice a move a move I missed. This blows.

I'm guessing you found a method that tests well, but you also found out that it is hard to trade in real time, because of the boredom factor.

Consider either automating your trading (then you don't have to be there), or change your strategy as Big Mike suggested - make it fit what you like (certain hours, certain number of trades, etc).


If you do nothing, and continue to trade a strategy that bores you, you are on a sure road to ruin. You'll miss trades, or start taking flyers. Your performance will not be close to your historical testing, that is for sure.


The ironic thing is many traders consider good trading to be boring.

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 vegasfoster 
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Ditto. I would further qualify that "something else" beith not crude and practice for a few months before going live. If you haven't already, I would also recommend that you analyze your stats by hour. I use to trade all day and found I didn't make any money after the first 3 hours anyway, so I stopped.

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 liquidcci 
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Really trading should be boring in many respects and you want to keep it that way. It should not be unsatisfying but craving excitement via trading can ruin you. It can cause to start trying to make your life more exciting by getting into trades you should not. Lets face it the euphoria and fear created by being in a trade can be quite addicting. Even fear can be a rush.

All that being said I get what you are saying and I have found automation to be a key for me. I don't want to stare at a monitor all day long for endless hours. I can get so much more done in other aspects of my life by allowing a bot to execute my plan.

"The day I became a winning trader was the day it became boring. Daily losses no longer bother me and daily wins no longer excited me. Took years of pain and busting a few accounts before finally got my mind right. I survived the darkness within and now just chillax and let my black box do the work."
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 addchild 
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Just cause you're stuck at your desk doesn't mean it has to be boring. Learn a new skill, or language, play video games (my third monitor is now dedicated to my xbox), do probability puzzles, learn more about markets, or about other instruments, The CME Group risk management handbook is always a good read!

You could also automate, or just choose a different line of work, because if your not interested in what you do, it will only get more monotonous as time goes on.


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 josh 
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liquidcci View Post
Really trading should be boring in many respects and you want to keep it that way.

This is the retail educator's mantra, and I hear it all the time, and for some reason people just take it at face value.

I agree in the sense that it's not productive to get angry and make decisions as a result that are harmful to oneself. However, a boring profession is worse than prison. Why would you want to make money, if you are literally bored for hours a day on end? I know that lunchtime isn't the most exciting, so nothing wrong with doing something else during that period, but if trading is not exciting to someone, then I think he needs to consider another profession.

Somewhere towards the middle/end (if I recall) of this video, PTJ talks about this a bit. Whatever the case, it's a fascinating video about the man:



He is the antithesis of "trading is boring" and I would be willing to bet that the ones who do this as a career do not find making money boring, nor are they automatons when losing money. Note how PTJ responds on a 6 million USD losing day--he is not super angry, but he vows that "they" will repay him. Also, on a 5 million USD winning day, he is very anxious and nervous as the close nears. Hardly the "cool hand luke, mr. robot" image that is so often touted as the only way to be. Perhaps the trading educator's "be emotionless" advice needs to be reconsidered, particularly as we are all different and some of us will be bored, and some of us will actually find it exciting and fun when we do something for 8-12 hours a day.

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 rubyslippage 
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ctmvas View Post
Staring in front of my monitor the whole day is difficult for me to do. Itís boring. It bores me to death. Itís so frustrating because it takes 1 second to backtest a strategy, but then when itís time to trade, and I have to sit in front of my monitor for 8 hours waiting every 5 minute bar to complete. It simply sucks. Maybe I lack patience.

The worst part is when I will leave my desk to do something else because Iím not seeing any opportunities, or I donít foresee any opportunities because the way the chart looks, and I will come back to my desk and notice a move a move I missed. This blows.

I'll share a couple action steps that helped me, because for the longest time I'd get bored watching chop or narrow range consolidation, or I'd take a few "probe" trades that went nowhere, then I'd take a break and come back to see a strong move that came off a clean signal.

1. Find another trader or two to chat with during chop/consolidation periods.

2. As soon as you feel the urge to step away because the price action's making you stir crazy, give it 20 more minutes (set an alarm or timer).

If you do #1, be careful about discussing stuff where you have to scroll back on your charts, because you'll still end up missing the move if you can't stay focused on the right edge.

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 Fadi 
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ctmvas View Post
Staring in front of my monitor the whole day is difficult for me to do. Itís boring. It bores me to death. Itís so frustrating because it takes 1 second to backtest a strategy, but then when itís time to trade, and I have to sit in front of my monitor for 8 hours waiting every 5 minute bar to complete. It simply sucks. Maybe I lack patience.

The worst part is when I will leave my desk to do something else because Iím not seeing any opportunities, or I donít foresee any opportunities because the way the chart looks, and I will come back to my desk and notice a move a move I missed. This blows.

Yes it is boring, it bores me to death too
That's why I only trade longer time frames now, daily/weekly/monthly charts; and on top of that I have found that this is where the real money lies... much more than intraday scalps and making my broker fortunes through commissions - but that could be just me.

Also, over the days when I used to wake up in the middle of the night to watch the overseas sessions, over the days I used to sit in front of my screen for more than 15hrs a day, over that over this... Over my 6 screens arrays too, and over my super subscriptions to all possible data feeds, news feeds, websites, platforms, and you name

Those were the days hehehe... yes, when trading was all new and exciting, a lot to learn, and a lot to discover. Waiting for the 5min candle to form live was the most exciting thing ever!
But guess what? Those were the days in which I would be wiped out by news or institution plays too, jump over an earning report or fed releases; and unfortunately the days I used to watch my account shrink month after month.

It is rare to read on this forum that a trader is getting bored; but I would qualify that as a new phase in the process where trading ultimately should become just a tool, a means to an end, to make money and live financially independent
Then you go get yourself a living! Hopefully sooner than later...

Congratulations if you have reached that phase.

Sincerely
Fadi

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 liquidcci 
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josh View Post
This is the retail educator's mantra, and I hear it all the time, and for some reason people just take it at face value.

I agree in the sense that it's not productive to get angry and make decisions as a result that are harmful to oneself. However, a boring profession is worse than prison. Why would you want to make money, if you are literally bored for hours a day on end? I know that lunchtime isn't the most exciting, so nothing wrong with doing something else during that period, but if trading is not exciting to someone, then I think he needs to consider another profession.


He is the antithesis of "trading is boring" and I would be willing to bet that the ones who do this as a career do not find making money boring, nor are they automatons when losing money. Note how PTJ responds on a 6 million USD losing day--he is not super angry, but he vows that "they" will repay him. Also, on a 5 million USD winning day, he is very anxious and nervous as the close nears. Hardly the "cool hand luke, mr. robot" image that is so often touted as the only way to be. Perhaps the trading educator's "be emotionless" advice needs to be reconsidered, particularly as we are all different and some of us will be bored, and some of us will actually find it exciting and fun when we do something for 8-12 hours a day.

@josh I agree with much of what you said but I define boring different from unfullfilling, unsatisfying etc... I don't think someone should spend their life doing something that brings no personal satisfaction. I can be bored trading but it can still be a satisfying occupation that I enjoy. I do not want it to be exciting. I want it to be emotionless and emotionless is boring.

So I am very bored with trading but also very satisfied and really like doing it. I would never encourage someone not to trade because they finding it boring. I would encourage them to quit if they can't make money or it brings no sense of personal satisfaction. I think you could say that about a lot of occupations.

I lost a ton of money back when trading excited me now that it bores me I make money. Go figure.

"The day I became a winning trader was the day it became boring. Daily losses no longer bother me and daily wins no longer excited me. Took years of pain and busting a few accounts before finally got my mind right. I survived the darkness within and now just chillax and let my black box do the work."
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 Traderwolf 
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liquidcci View Post
I do not want it to be exciting. I want it to be emotionless and emotionless is boring.

I lost a ton of money back when trading excited me now that it bores me I make money. Go figure.


@liquidcci,

Ha! You have put into words what I have really been striving to do... Get myself in a state of calm and relaxation where I am not excited or excitable when taking trades; fear and stress are on the distant back burner. Decisions are fairly automatic and result in little emotion. I have always heard that very accomplished traders are very "bored" when they trade because it is just a matter of following a routine. Following the routine is gratifying in that at the end of the day the profits you have made give you a sense of accomplishment and the ability to enjoy some of your other passions in life..

Thanks for shedding your light into this!! I agree with @josh... I would say that a newbie that is not really "excited" by trading initially should most likely walk away.. There is nothing boring(to me) about it when you are new and learning and seeing the potential of making or losing a pile of money in minutes with no restraints except your bank account...

All the best,

Wolf

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 liquidcci 
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Traderwolf View Post
@liquidcci,
Following the routine is gratifying in that at the end of the day the profits you have made give you a sense of accomplishment and the ability to enjoy some of your other passions in life..
Wolf

@Traderwolf great statement. The routine and successfully following is where the gratification is in trading at least for me. The daily mechanics I would not call fun. I have never enjoyed a backtest or sitting in front of a computer for hours on end. But the end result and where it can take me in life has some exciting possibilities.

Bored with the mechanics excited about where I can be in a few years.

"The day I became a winning trader was the day it became boring. Daily losses no longer bother me and daily wins no longer excited me. Took years of pain and busting a few accounts before finally got my mind right. I survived the darkness within and now just chillax and let my black box do the work."
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 ctmvas 
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Thanks for the advice guys. I'm looking at things from a positive view point now...

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 josh 
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liquidcci View Post
josh I agree with much of what you said but I define boring different from unfullfilling, unsatisfying etc... I don't think someone should spend their life doing something that brings no personal satisfaction. I can be bored trading but it can still be a satisfying occupation that I enjoy. I do not want it to be exciting. I want it to be emotionless and emotionless is boring.

I understand your unfulfilling / boring distinction, that is a good point. I guess we would have to just have different opinions about the emotionless part. To each his own!

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 ZarethKnyght 
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I'm still new to things but I don't associate boring with being emotionless. Being emotionless to me sounds like being in control of your emotions enough that it doesn't interfere with your decision making. I would never encourage someone to do something that bores them. But boring means that you're not enjoying what you're doing. If you're not enjoying what you're doing, you're not living your life to its fullest.

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 artemiso 
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ctmvas View Post
Staring in front of my monitor the whole day is difficult for me to do. It’s boring. It bores me to death. It’s so frustrating because it takes 1 second to backtest a strategy, but then when it’s time to trade, and I have to sit in front of my monitor for 8 hours waiting every 5 minute bar to complete. It simply sucks. Maybe I lack patience.

The worst part is when I will leave my desk to do something else because I’m not seeing any opportunities, or I don’t foresee any opportunities because the way the chart looks, and I will come back to my desk and notice a move a move I missed. This blows.

I'm going to suggest something slightly different.

Boring things are usually what makes you a better person. Studying. Weight lifting. Running 120 miles per week. Shooting 10,000 baskets from the same spot. Memorizing precedent cases in law school. Cooking your own meals and washing your own dishes. Taking blood tests before and after a race. Setting up the chess board 10,000 times over and over again until you become a grandmaster.

You could make some improvement by adopting a better regimen, e.g. finding an effective use of the 5 minutes you are waiting for each bar to complete.

However, there is a minimum amount of boredom that you must put up with, and chances are, you're better off enduring the boredom until you're used to it rather than changing your trading style. Changing your attitude towards the boredom might help, but in the end, that's overrated: I am extremely passionate about piano, I love classical music, but I'm terrible at playing the piano.

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 liquidcci 
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I guess what I am really trying to say is I must be Dr. Spock when trading and Captain Kirk outside of trading. Just sayin.

"The day I became a winning trader was the day it became boring. Daily losses no longer bother me and daily wins no longer excited me. Took years of pain and busting a few accounts before finally got my mind right. I survived the darkness within and now just chillax and let my black box do the work."
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 RichardHK 
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liquidcci View Post
I guess what I am really trying to say is I must be Dr. Spock when trading and Captain Kirk outside of trading. Just sayin.

Actually, I suggest you keep both 'in your head' whilst trading: Captain Kirk to take disciplined trade actions, after consultation with Dr Spock on trade analysis. You could add a few more 'voices' for even more success. Seriously!

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