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Millions Made, now what?


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Millions Made, now what?

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  #1 (permalink)
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Was talking to some people recently and wanted to ask this question. First, some info.

When I started trading full time I very much had goals in mind. The goals are basically identical today as they were then, which is to accumulate enough money to be able to retire early (age 40 was/is goal) and move to some place in the Caribbean.

I always planned to continue to trade, but not for income - rather, for enjoyment. I do not want to be dependent upon trading income any longer than I "need" to be, as we all know it is just as easy (easier?) to lose as it is to win.

I am doing very well on my path. And why I create this post is simple: For me, I have a clearly defined end in mind where I will take my proceeds and my trading results, and I will take a definitive action with them, thereby achieving my goal.

What I wonder about, is that it seems a lot of others do not operate this way. And I am curious as to why, and what they use for their own objectives and goals. There are a large number of people on futures.io (formerly BMT) who already have more money than even my "target" amount, yet they are still doing this every day.

So, the questions I pose to anyone who wants to try to answer:

a) Do you have a set goal in mind for when you will "retire from trading", thereby having secured your funds for living and may continue to only trade as a hobby, but not for income?

b) If you have a substantial amount of money already accumulated towards this goal, or if you have surpassed the amount of money needed to safely retire, what is your reason for continuing to trade for income instead of treating it like a hobby?

c) Is there a difference between making your own money (starting with zero), and inheriting money or "family money" when it comes to goals and these decisions?

d) Why is it some people never seem to "have enough"?

How is it that some people let it get away from them (from my view) where they are never satisfied? They are always wanting more. Bigger house, more cars, etc. I like nice things too, but I always have a goal in mind and I never stop working towards it.

I guess for me, I kind of view trading like some people view an 8 to 5 job. I have an end time in mind, and while I don't mind staying late some days, I am going it so that I can enjoy the weekend vacation. In other words, my "quitting time" is my goal of being able to retire from trading and have enough money to not work again and live my life the way I want.

I can't see working late or even working at all every day forever.

Mike

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  #3 (permalink)
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Simpler:

If you already have millions, why are you sitting in front of a screen trading 8 hours a day instead of traveling the world, cruising, out at the pool, or basically any place other than trading?

Mike

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I can respond based on my experience and the things I have seen.

I did have one instance where I considered walking, but I was 33 and had a brand new baby and two on the way. Any place that I'd walk away too is not an appropriate destination or them.....twelve years later that is still true.

I think there are two distinctions that you are making that may not be universal. Just talking about me...I keep trading because I love to trade. Some guys say they will retire and golf or fish or travel. Those guys might not LOVE what they do. I golf or fish or travel any damn time I want to. Trading allows me that privilege. So I guess I view trading well as the lifestyle not the method to attain a lifestyle. I trade to pile up victories because I love to compete, the dollars are just the result of good trades.

I guess that description means that for me trading transcends "for income" or "for enjoyment". Can it be both...without being either?

I think there are huge differences between guy that where born with money and guys that made their own. I'm thinking about the legendary traders that I know and all that I can think of made their own fortunes. The guys that came to the floor with dads money never really seemed to pan out...even the ones that where second generation floor families. I might be a lunatic Mike but my account balance is a reflection of the spoils of war...i get a bigger charge out of being victorious in battle than I do about walking away to some other unknown.

That leads to the issue of having enough. That depends on the primary motivation. Money is always in there, yes. But if I never make another dollar trading or if I make many millions more, whatever I have will always be just enough. I don't let the money or the loss/lack of it define me.

I'm here because I love to compete. The markets are still the most competitive arena in the world and the last bastion of true Capitalism. I guess I could shift the mix a little and trade less but that would not be a need issue, it would be because there is something else that I enjoy more.

That make any sense?

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  #5 (permalink)
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Some people say that if you're only trading as a means to an end, you'll never manage it long enough to get where you want to be.

I don't necessarily agree with that, but I do think you have to keep your long term goals and short term goals seperate, and use them as motivational factors in slightly different ways. For instance, I don't sit down and visualise my long term goal every day, but I do do that with my short term goals (part of my pre-market procedures). But, "visualising" my long term goals is something I might do once or twice a month.

(FYI, my long term goal is to have enough money to buy enough real estate so that I can live off the income, have a bit stashed away so I can give each of my kids (if/when I have them) a private education, my own home w/ no mortgage, and that'll do me fine. Then I want to pack a rucksack, take my camera, and f**k off round the world for 5+ years. Do it on a shoestring. Then come back to the UK, teach Geography in a public (private) school, find some 30yr old french teacher and knock babies out like there is no tomorrow. I'll restore old furniture as a hobby.)

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  #6 (permalink)
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My goals in trading are currently just trying to be a better trader and the many details that go with it
such as reducing MAE, better entries and attaining consistency etc.

I hadn't thought too much about longer term goals. If I did make it to be a millionaire, I would want to try to own or run a franchise. Or maybe buy and work a farm. (Howard Graham Buffett - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) Learn survival skills. And take flight lessons up to and including commercial level turboprop or turbofan plane ratings. Although I know it's too late for me to think about any career in this except maybe a tour pilot. Or maybe go back to (graduate) school or do self research in a technology hobby. Lots of possibilities. I have a retired friend who is busy self-faceting gemstones. He used to be in a club finding fire opals in deserts or such. Jim Rodgers said recently on CNBC he was learning to drive a tractor and farming. Of course remember to donate some percentage of one's winnings to the Church or some charity.

I'd agree I don't see trading as the goal to be the only all time consuming occupation for the rest of my life. However it's been very consuming for me and I found I enjoy learning about it with some degree of obsession.

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  #7 (permalink)
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I think wldman nailed it pretty well. Competitive personalities and family situations. I don't like to lose. Trading is a challenge. I'm not usually sitting for 8 hours. Usually I work mornings until lunch if that. (I'm on here now because wife out shopping with her mother and I'm addicted to futures.io (formerly BMT) )

A lot of people who have businesses that are successful love what they do and it becomes not about the money. I enjoy trading most of the time (when I'm winning). It is a way of keeping score. I won today. etc.

So me and the misses might be more adventurous with living arrangements and I think I will probably trade less once the kids are grown and out of the house. We will travel more since not locked into summers or when school is out. At least that is my fantasy. We looked pretty hard @ bailing out to the Caribbean and spent the whole summer there one year to see what we thought. Wife missed her parents. Kids missed their friends. Island fever. etc More than that the schooling situation wasn't what we wanted. Then there is the parents are getting older back in the US thing...

We live at the beach now near the things we want to be near to. We have 2 places in Panama so as to traveling the world, cruising, out at the pool, etc - can do that now.

I am actually leaning more to a rent personality as I get older. Why own a plane if I can rent one. Houses entail property tax, maintenance (especially at the beach), etc. and lock you into one location. We kinda learned this with Panama. I spend money in Panama whether I go there or not.

I'm 42. No family money. Basics are paid for. All from trading. Never did the 401k stuff when I was a corporate guy. (maybe should have) I don't think I could just stop trading right now and never make a dime more - probably run out since I plan on living a while and/or maybe i'm just addicted to trading.... I have scaled back the toys and house thing not so much because of money but because of simplicity. Less stuff to break. I feel like this is something I have gotten from trading and it has affected my life in a positive way more than the money.

I don't see trading as a trouble or a tie down because you can do it from anywhere and the time commitment is what you make of it. I have the fancy hotdog desktop computer with monster monitor but most of my trades are taken on my old laptop which I can take anywhere.

So Mike - why do you do futures.io (formerly BMT)? It's not for the money. Must be the glory.....those late nights fighting spam People find passions. I think for the better traders the game just becomes a passion.

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websouth View Post
...
I am actually leaning more to a rent personality as I get older. Why own a plane if I can rent one. Houses entail property tax, maintenance (especially at the beach), etc. and lock you into one location. We kinda learned this with Panama. I spend money in Panama whether I go there or not.
...

"If it flies, floats, or fornicates - rent it" - Felix Dennis.

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I'm 59 years old and have been trading for a living for 40 years; and I hope the good Lord gives me the opportunity to trade for another forty. My mom turns 98 this coming September, so I don't think its an unreasonable request. I tried "retiring" when I left the floor and "cashed out", via the CBOT IPO, about 5-6 years ago, but it didn't quite mesh with my "Type A" personality. I believe the traits that motivate and drive successful people are the very same traits that keep them from retiring. Besides, making lots of money, just never seems to get old.

My father was the hardest working man I ever met, and after he retired, he was lost, and then he was gone. Trading gives me purpose beyond my family. It keeps me vital, in an area of my life I hope never declines. I can do it from anywhere, at any time, and I can remove myself from it, at anytime I choose. I've never worked a day in my life, because I love what I'm doing. Being able to support yourself via trading is a tremendous gift, and privilege that few people ever get to enjoy.

Why would I want to quit, that?

BTW: Stay trading, my friends.

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  #10 (permalink)
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My third paragraph - I never want to stop trading. But I do want to switch from income necessity to voluntary hobby.

I don't want to become someone who never has enough.

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