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How do I not take losses personally?
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How do I not take losses personally?

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josh View Post
I am not advocating behavior which would tend to be unprofessional, like throwing a chair out of a window, but I agree with @mattz -- anyone who loses a shitload of money and says "that's okay, not a big deal," is not a fucking trader. Do they engage in stupid behavior after a loss? No, that would be unprofessional. Do they get pissed off enough to work on their craft? Hopefully. It's necessary to detach the emotional component of losing insomuch as it does not affect the next trade--this can lead to trouble. But losing money sucks, and anyone who says otherwise is full of shit. You have never heard so much cursing as when you are in a group of professional traders who are having a bad day. Makes a group of cursing sailors seem like saints.

There are different approaches.

Going back and looking at floor traders I think some of them were swinging 50% of their net worth on a daily basis every now and then and that can have a crushing emotional effect, so obviously there is going to be throwing chairs and everything else.

But I prefer to not take risks like that. No single trade, no single day, would ever upset me. Even a string of bad days would barely upset me. Now a string of bad weeks, that will definitely upset me.

I subscribe to the trade "I don't care size". Over time my "I don't care" size has increased, and I think it will increase for everyone as you get more and more accustomed to the size. If I suddenly doubled my size then I would also see a direct effect on my temper and the end of the day or week. Not just if things went badly but probably if they went well too, because it would be like riding a high. In other words, it's not normal. And I believe a trader should try to always be normal.

I remember a story that went something along the lines of: A trader sit next to me in the office. I never knew if he was having a good day or bad day, until it was lunch time. If he offered to buy, it was a good day.

I approach things in a similar way. This is not something that has come easily or quickly, it has taken a long time to get to this place of "I don't care".

Mike

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