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What is your biggest trading challenge?
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What is your biggest trading challenge?

  #21 (permalink)
Elite Member
Manila, Philippines
 
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overtrading has been a real problem for me. i get bored easily and tend to place a trade here and there and then lose the trade.

recently bought a PS4 to somehow get my hands off the trading screen if i don't see any signals. now another problem arises.... undertrading.

another problem is lack of discipline really. need to break my bad habbits.

"You are only as good as the decisions you make."
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  #22 (permalink)
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Itchymoku View Post
I found with other jobs I've had that forcing myself to wake up regardless how tired I was to get there on time over and over worked with coffee. Going to sleep on time was really just a function of being tired from waking up early. (hopefully my new diet should help a little)

Do you have any tips? What do you do to maintain a balanced sleep schedule?

Thanks,
Itchy

I've always been a night owl which led to being late to work most mornings, thankfully I was always the boss!....then I started trading...and I live in the MST time zone, which meant if I wanted to trade US based markets I had to get out of bed pretty darn early for me.

I struggled a lot with this for a while then I read an article on Lifehacker about how to get into a new sleep habit.

So this is what I did.

1. I set concrete parameters about what I time I would go to bed. I know I need 7 hours a night. No more no less. So I counted backward from my desired wake time and thats my bed time.
2. No TV one hour before bed. I can fudge on this now but in the beginning I had to make it a solid rule.
3. I got a sleep app for my phone that wakes me when I'm NOT in REM sleep and in a half hour window before my desired wake time. This helped a ton with not being groggy when I wake up.
4. I bought a high quality eye mask. This was to block out my wife's late night habits of watching TV on her phone or on the ipad and create absolute darkness.
5. I use ear plugs to create absolute silence.
6. I turn down the AC quite a bit. Science has proven you sleep better in a cool room. For me its around 68 degrees.
7. I created a bed time routine. I follow it to the letter every night. This routine tells my body its time to go to sleep. This includes some minor stretching of arms and legs while laying in bed....seems to relax me really well.
8. When the alarm goes off, I get up. No snoozing.
9. No heavy food at least two hours before bed. I dont sleep well if hungry but a light snack before bed helps me...maybe a banana or something like that.
10. No alcohol. This messes my sleep cycle up like crazy.
11. No caffeine a few hours before bed....this should be obvious but for some its not.

The results:

By following these steps, I went from a night owl to an early riser. I can't even sleep in on weekends unless I stay up several nights in a row. Most days I wake up without the alarm on my phone. And most nights, I'm ready to sleep around 10 or so at night. My body simply shuts down when its ready to go to bed. And i went from laying awake in bed for what seemed like hours to being able to fall asleep almost instantly.

I should add this took about 45 days to really work for me. Those 45 days were pure torture but I did it. I knew I had to or trading wouldn't work for me. But now its just part of my life....

Hope this helps.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris

Last edited by PandaWarrior; June 26th, 2014 at 01:20 AM.
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  #23 (permalink)
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My worst trading problem??? Boredom is by far and away the biggest issue...but I'm working on this issue....its not solved yet but getting close.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #24 (permalink)
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Itchymoku View Post
I agree with most of the points here but taking a long break isn't feasible for me, maybe a few days considering I just got out of a break up after a year and a half but even the emotional aspect I ignore while trading. Trading is what I do and I highly enjoy it. It does drive me to stay up till the opening hours, I just need to rearrange the sleeping patterns I have. With forex I could stay up at night with no problem but with trading NQ it requires me to be awake during the morning. I have a lot of willpower, it's just that I was satisfied for a while making a few trades a week so I didn't change anything but now I want to do more. I can make it work because I have before. I don't mean to make a big deal about it because really it's something I can fix. I appreciate the response.

I do feel you, there are a lot of things that go hand in hand with trading regarding discipline in life not only with diet but also exercise, supportive friends and family, and many other subjects we talk about daily. Although willpower alone is not enough I believe it does constitute a good chunk of what is necessary, but yes there are many other things needed.

You can trade around the clock, at some point you have to make a decision about what kind of trader you are going to be. Swing trader in forex? Great, set your sleep schedule to accommodate this or monitor your positions during regular business hours. I know a guy that swing trades forex and only looks at his trades on Sunday evening and once or twice in the evening during the week.

Intra day trader in futures or stocks??? Get enough sleep to be at your sharpest when the market opens in your time zone.

There really isn't any other way to look at this. You must make a choice. You can't work around the clock without serious health consequences. Short term you might be able to make it work, but long term you will pay a steep price for this.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #25 (permalink)
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With me itís procrastination. Or maybe Iím lazy.

Not doing my preparation; not keeping my trade log up to date; not getting out of bed on time; taking a day or a week off;

Then again thatís what I like about trading. I can get away with all that stuff that I couldnít if I had a real job.

The other stuff on the poll aside from lack of funding can be summed up as lack of discipline.

It is hard to find the Truth when you start your search with a preconceived notion of what the Truth will be.
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  #26 (permalink)
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Itchymoku View Post

Do you have any tips? What do you do to maintain a balanced sleep schedule?

Thanks,
Itchy

One way I found to get to sleep easier is to first lie on the bed, then sort of daydream about something,
maybe how you're going to be better in trading in that, or some discussion thread i.e. let the mind wander...soon the details will get blurry ..and zzz,

(you may not realize you've fallen asleep at that point)

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  #27 (permalink)
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Cloudy View Post
One way I found to get to sleep easier is to first lie on the bed, then sort of daydream about something,
maybe how you're going to be better in trading in that, or some discussion thread i.e. let the mind wander...soon the details will get blurry ..and zzz,

(you may not realize you've fallen asleep at that point)

Ever since I was a child the tv has helped me go to sleep otherwise I roll around in the darkness in endless thoughts till I eventually get up and go back out into the living room on the internet. I like it on low brightness/volume. I find it somewhat hypnotic in a sense.


Last edited by Itchymoku; June 26th, 2014 at 03:18 AM.
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  #28 (permalink)
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Biggest challenges:

Overtrading and not following the rules. Keeping a journal and rigorously posting there EVERY SINGLE DAY I TRADE, each trade, has helped a great deal with this.

For the overtrading part I think I am finally through the worst, at least on sim that is. Some good reminders against it or me are:

"If you can't stick to your setups, you can't go live. This will lead to be a sim-trading moron forever, eventually. U want that?"

"Even with slow markets tree are usually at least 3 viable setups - 135$ for 2,5 hours doesn't sound bad, so don't burn it on entertainment in between the real trades"

"U sure that makes sense? If not that really messes your statistics - and you can't even explain it!"

As for following the rules, I basically tackled and overcome all the major/catastrophic issues that may very well ground one's account (they did for me) , being
# widening the stop
# adding to losers
# reentering after a stopout

I believe that for many people these three issues come one after another,
1) you don't want to acknowledge that you are wrong so you don't let the market proof it.
2) you now understand that at some point you are definitely wrong (aka stop) but as it goes against you it is too much pain to just do nothing, so you add some - of it turns then you feel grate because you got the bottom right at least the 2nd time..
3) you get 1) and 2) but still dislike failure. So at the smallest sign in favor of your original idea/direction, you jump back in. This is also the step where you start to develop some habit of overtrading, or a facet of it I should say.
I been there quite some time without realizing what I did to my risk exposure, thus incorporated overtrading as a deep habit.

What I now still encounter is the urge to TIGHTEN my stop, although not permissible.
I usually don't, but it quite frequently freaks me out to sit there for 15 minutes one tick from getting it to break even and still having my full stop loss in place.
Again, journaling helps a great deal to keep the stops where try belong, yet I still need to overcome this mentally and build a good habit around it.

What helps immediately? Leaving the desk while in a trade
Of course I can't do that once I'm live so I need to tackle this before I get there.

I'm sure there are plenty other shortcomings but for now these are my main drivers for improvement on the soft-skill side of things

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  #29 (permalink)
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Cloudy View Post
One way I found to get to sleep easier is to first lie on the bed, then sort of daydream about something,
maybe how you're going to be better in trading in that, or some discussion thread i.e. let the mind wander...soon the details will get blurry ..and zzz,

(you may not realize you've fallen asleep at that point)

I should have added with the suggestion: daydream about pleasant thoughts rather than some problem of the day. Like something funny, or a movie scenario, tropical island vacation, driving along a coast etc., something that wasn't negative stressful and let the mind wander with that. I agree ruminating over some problem thoughts can keep myself awake instead.

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  #30 (permalink)
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What to do with all the money.... sike

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