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Disengage the simulator
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Disengage the simulator

  #1 (permalink)
Elite Member
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Disengage the simulator

So today I made three winning trades and three losing trades. The winning trades more than covered my losses so that should be a good day, right? Wrong. Each win was made in simulation mode. I was very frustrated to say the least. After savagely beating my punch bag and looking back on things objectively I have decided I need to be completely done with live sim. I have a fully funded account, which is big enough that trading one contract at a time will take me a long long while to deplete.

Now today tells me a few things. While my entries on my losing trades weren't perfect, in retrospect I would have made those trades 10/10 times. I was correct in entering those trades, where I placed my stops and my targets, but I was wrong and I accept that. The only problem was that instead of entering live on the next setup, I hesitated and I did it on sim. So some lessons to be learned is that I am still nervous trading real money, but I shouldn't be. My strategy is simple and effective. After all, going 3 for 6 with two home runs and a base hit is pretty good.

So the problem isn't my strategy, its me. My solution to this is simple. I will take a max of one live trade per day on one contract. I will not trade on sim anymore live, only on replay after hours to practice my entries, exits, stops, and targets. I will take my one trade and either make a profit or a loss and quit for the day. When I can take my losses and profits with the Spartan reserve I know I am capable of, then and only then will I seek to increase my trading. I have also written out my rules and posted them to my monitor. If I violate my rules I suspend myself from all trading for 24 hours.

I am never going to get over this hurdle hiding in the simulator. I need to face this head on and tackle it. I have the discipline and am fully capable of it. Hope everyone else is having a better day in the markets, I'm going to go try to have a good rest of my day now. Any comments, questions, concerns would be greatly appreciated.

-JR

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  #2 (permalink)
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  #3 (permalink)
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Sg7JR View Post
So today I made three winning trades and three losing trades. The winning trades more than covered my losses so that should be a good day, right? Wrong. Each win was made in simulation mode. I was very frustrated to say the least. After savagely beating my punch bag and looking back on things objectively I have decided I need to be completely done with live sim. I have a fully funded account, which is big enough that trading one contract at a time will take me a long long while to deplete.

Now today tells me a few things. While my entries on my losing trades weren't perfect, in retrospect I would have made those trades 10/10 times. I was correct in entering those trades, where I placed my stops and my targets, but I was wrong and I accept that. The only problem was that instead of entering live on the next setup, I hesitated and I did it on sim. So some lessons to be learned is that I am still nervous trading real money, but I shouldn't be. My strategy is simple and effective. After all, going 3 for 6 with two home runs and a base hit is pretty good.

So the problem isn't my strategy, its me. My solution to this is simple. I will take a max of one live trade per day on one contract. I will not trade on sim anymore live, only on replay after hours to practice my entries, exits, stops, and targets. I will take my one trade and either make a profit or a loss and quit for the day. When I can take my losses and profits with the Spartan reserve I know I am capable of, then and only then will I seek to increase my trading. I have also written out my rules and posted them to my monitor. If I violate my rules I suspend myself from all trading for 24 hours.

I am never going to get over this hurdle hiding in the simulator. I need to face this head on and tackle it. I have the discipline and am fully capable of it. Hope everyone else is having a better day in the markets, I'm going to go try to have a good rest of my day now. Any comments, questions, concerns would be greatly appreciated.

-JR

It is tough to go from Sim to Live, but you need to remind yourself that the market is not going to be any different, it will not change, it does not care that you were on sim and now you are trading 1 lot.

If your trading system calls for you to take more then one trade per day then I would really not advise you to just tell yourself to take 1 trade a day for more then a couple days. In the same way that you want to transition from sim to live, you will only have the same results from live trading as you did sim trading if you trade the same way. So if you normally take 5 trades a day, and you go live planning to take only 1 trade a day you are not trading your system.

Maybe for the first day, get in that first trade. Set your targets / stops and then just sit back and let either the target or stop be hit. Don't do one iota of trade management. If it takes 5 min or 5 hours, just let it happen and you will realize that live trading isn't so bad after all

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  #4 (permalink)
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Sg7JR View Post
I have a fully funded account, which is big enough that trading one contract at a time will take me a long long while to deplete.

But do you have a method or system which has a proven edge, so that every trade you enter has a net positive expectation? There are many other considerations, too, of course (such as money management and position-sizing), but this should surely be the starting-point for trading it live?


Sg7JR View Post
I was correct in entering those trades, where I placed my stops and my targets

Sure ... this can easily be so; some losing trades are inevitable?


Sg7JR View Post
I will take a max of one live trade per day

This is where I don't follow your reasoning.

Excuse me if I'm interfering, but here's how I look at it: either your method/system gives you an edge, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, you shouldn't be trading it live at all. If it does, you should surely be trading it as often as possible, whenever "fully qualified set-ups" arise in whatever your market is?

I don't see how you can gain anything, by limiting it artificially to one trade per day.

Sometimes the week's second-best and third-best trades will turn out to have been "subsequent" trades (i.e. trades in situations which happened to arise after you'd already done one trade - successfully or unsuccessfully - on that day). Why run the risk of excluding those just because you've already traded once?

(Unless you're trading something like a "first opening-range breakout" method which, by definition, arises only once a day? But presumably you're not, since you started by commenting on today's 6 trades?).

I wish you good luck, anyway!

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  #5 (permalink)
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Thank you for your responses. Maybe I should clarify things a little. My strategy looks a larger time frame and attempts less trades per day so 1-3 is reasonable for a morning. When I started out I was taking 15-30 trades a day, and I quickly realized it wasn't going to work well in the long run. I was winning, but after commissions I was hovering around even. I have been lurking around here for a while, and after reading others experiences and watching webinars I realized most traders end up backing up and looking at the big picture eventually, simplifying things and trading less, so I reformed my strategy for that. Realistically 6 trades is a lot for my strategy so I am guilty of over trading a little this morning, simulated or not.

My strategy and money management are well defined and sound, but I will post about that in another thread dedicated to strategy instead of psychology. I was looking for a method to dealing with the psychological and emotional side of trading, which is what I am struggling with. The one trade a day was the best I could come up with, but maybe I should just stay the course and trust my setup. And stay off sim...

To be honest I before I went live I thought that the whole sim vs live thing was all just made up and I didn't think it would affect me. I was humbly wrong. It does feel good to vent about this to other traders though.

-JR

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  #6 (permalink)
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Sg7JR View Post
To be honest I before I went live I thought that the whole sim vs live thing was all just made up and I didn't think it would affect me. I was humbly wrong. It does feel good to vent about this to other traders though.

Really! I'm glad several here warned me about it - It's quite different. Glad I started with a small lot size. Going to stay small until I get my comfort back.

Good Luck, Good Trades

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