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Catching Big Waves - a trader's journal of surfing the the markets
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Catching Big Waves - a trader's journal of surfing the the markets

  #3751 (permalink)
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researcher247 View Post
Bored as fuck on my month-long vacation on a Sunday night; so I'll throw another comment into this thread.

Hey--overachiever workaholic @GaryD; why don't cha trade an asset class from 4:30am or 5am est up to 6:30am or 7am est full time with appropriate trading size--say @1% of your risk capital per trade (based on avg. risk per trade) and then say--work 75% of your normal workload?

Then when you are working on all your building stuff--you can work at 110%--bust that shit out and NOT compromise your trading?

When you trade you trade (I am sure you can find a great trading instrument early in the a.m. 6E or Dax or Bund or Ftse 100 or whatever). See if you can work your way up in size (no pressure 'cause you keep % of your total margin risk per trade low) and work your way up the foodchain while you are making big money in your consulting?

You work 25% less to compensate for your other 'full-time' job (90-120 minutes is full-time daytrading, btw for many people).

No offense and no worries, but I don't see you upping your contract size and upping your trading salary doing what you are doing now.

If what you are doing now is your thing--then keep doing it. You don't have to burn any bridges with the compromise--but you'll have to go to bed a bit earlier and not drink too many beers if you get up early.

When I am based on the west coast I have to get up @3:45am PST~~so, you'll have that advantage on me!! : )

In Colorado though--you'd have to be up @3am MST--that is not cool though.

Ever thought about just being an East Coast consultant?

peace

hedvig


Well, for one, I have not traded anything other than crude for a long time, and while it can be a moody and volatile animal, it is what I seem to understand better. I watch 6E, so that would be my first choice if I were going to a 3am instrument. But even things like new events make more sense to me as to why the price of oil would move as opposed tto the value of a currency. But, let's assume I could get past the learning curve.

The real issue is not whether I can make money, because despite the fact that I am not making what I would like to in trading, I am doing well in the other things I do. What has happened to me, is I chose my original career path soley for the purpose of making a lot of money, but never because I enjoyed doing it. I one day broke free, and then transitioned what I did for a living to keeping the good parts and eliminating the bad, and did that for several years with great success. But that fell apart on me, as we have discussed. And in hindsight, had I just continued to drudge along in the work I did not enjoy, I would have come out so much better financially.

So, back to the old ways of 80 hours a week, in something I can barely stand, is the thing I knew to do to dig myself out of a hole. And I am somewhat out of that hole now, but looking at moving to full time trading as something that gives me far more satisfaction and personal freedom.

But, it also carries with it risk, and I went down that path once before, choosing something I enjoyed over something practical, and having it blow up on me. One side of me does not want to be afraid to take risks again, and wants to be free to follow whatever path I choose, but the memories of failure are a tough thing to overcome, and so I am clinging to this middle ground of keeping my trading skills honed while I keep the main source of income flowing.

Here's what is the real deal killer to your proposal though; I do not want to arrange my trading so that it allows me to work full time. I want to adjust my mind so that I am more relaxed with uncertainty, and I want to be able to pursue something I feel is more aligned with my spirit.

I was prepared to move along, go to full time trading, when a client lost their account, which caused me to see a significantly reduced workflow, which seemed to be the "push" I was looking for. And then, the new company that took over the work of my client asked me if I would keep doing the same thing for them. "Hooray"... with great sarcasm.

Yes, the money would flow, but that is not the point. If I were not afraid of the unknown, I would tell them "no, thinks but I have other plans". And I even did that initially. Then this job in Denver came up, for my old client, and it was presented to me in a way that I could not turn it down... And now the potential new client is hitting me hard with offers.

So, I came to Denver full time, instead of hiring someone as I always have in the past, and saw it as a working vacation, to clear my head, get a better view of what I really wanted out of life. I packed my monitors, rented a place in a "resort" property, and set up shop as a trader in the morning and a project manager in the afternoon. It actually works well for me to trade crude on Colorado time. The Denver job is not really tough. I could manage that from noon until 4pm EST. It's the bigger picture that is tough on me.

And, last week I just had a lot of things going on. Tough issues on four jobs, all east coast time. I probably would have not tradeded at all had I not come to Denver to sort out some personal decisions. And, I am net up since I got here, so all is not bad.

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  #3752 (permalink)
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researcher247 View Post
Bored as fuck...

I have said that myself, but really, if that were a true analogy, we're doing it wrong.

 
  #3753 (permalink)
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GaryD View Post
Well, for one, I have not traded anything other than crude for a long time, and while it can be a moody and volatile animal, it is what I seem to understand better. I watch 6E, so that would be my first choice if I were going to a 3am instrument. But even things like new events make more sense to me as to why the price of oil would move as opposed tto the value of a currency. But, let's assume I could get past the learning curve.

The real issue is not whether I can make money, because despite the fact that I am not making what I would like to in trading, I am doing well in the other things I do. What has happened to me, is I chose my original career path soley for the purpose of making a lot of money, but never because I enjoyed doing it. I one day broke free, and then transitioned what I did for a living to keeping the good parts and eliminating the bad, and did that for several years with great success. But that fell apart on me, as we have discussed. And in hindsight, had I just continued to drudge along in the work I did not enjoy, I would have come out so much better financially.

So, back to the old ways of 80 hours a week, in something I can barely stand, is the thing I knew to do to dig myself out of a hole. And I am somewhat out of that hole now, but looking at moving to full time trading as something that gives me far more satisfaction and personal freedom.

But, it also carries with it risk, and I went down that path once before, choosing something I enjoyed over something practical, and having it blow up on me. One side of me does not want to be afraid to take risks again, and wants to be free to follow whatever path I choose, but the memories of failure are a tough thing to overcome, and so I am clinging to this middle ground of keeping my trading skills honed while I keep the main source of income flowing.

Here's what is the real deal killer to your proposal though; I do not want to arrange my trading so that it allows me to work full time. I want to adjust my mind so that I am more relaxed with uncertainty, and I want to be able to pursue something I feel is more aligned with my spirit.

I was prepared to move along, go to full time trading, when a client lost their account, which caused me to see a significantly reduced workflow, which seemed to be the "push" I was looking for. And then, the new company that took over the work of my client asked me if I would keep doing the same thing for them. "Hooray"... with great sarcasm.

Yes, the money would flow, but that is not the point. If I were not afraid of the unknown, I would tell them "no, thinks but I have other plans". And I even did that initially. Then this job in Denver came up, for my old client, and it was presented to me in a way that I could not turn it down... And now the potential new client is hitting me hard with offers.

So, I came to Denver full time, instead of hiring someone as I always have in the past, and saw it as a working vacation, to clear my head, get a better view of what I really wanted out of life. I packed my monitors, rented a place in a "resort" property, and set up shop as a trader in the morning and a project manager in the afternoon. It actually works well for me to trade crude on Colorado time. The Denver job is not really tough. I could manage that from noon until 4pm EST. It's the bigger picture that is tough on me.

And, last week I just had a lot of things going on. Tough issues on four jobs, all east coast time. I probably would have not tradeded at all had I not come to Denver to sort out some personal decisions. And, I am net up since I got here, so all is not bad.

Trading is not that different from other aspects of life and the same principles often apply; manage risk first, push your luck second. I think that means you should not quit your day job until your trading results are so solid that this decision becomes very easy to make. If this is what you really want to do, I'm certain you'll get there but don't rush the process before its ready..Keep building up your trading account and build up your firewall..

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  #3754 (permalink)
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  #3755 (permalink)
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The orange trendline provided a good amount of selling volume to use as a backstop.


Last edited by GaryD; August 21st, 2012 at 06:49 PM.
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  #3756 (permalink)
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I hit crude from the short side today. Not the popular side for most of the morning, but it worked for me today. Once ES gave in it was a lot easier. The chart was from my first try, dropped around -12, but that is the approximate area where my trades took place. Net89 for my last day in Colorado. Going home.


s

 
  #3757 (permalink)
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Jedi View Post
Trading is not that different from other aspects of life and the same principles often apply; manage risk first, push your luck second. I think that means you should not quit your day job until your trading results are so solid that this decision becomes very easy to make. If this is what you really want to do, I'm certain you'll get there but don't rush the process before its ready..Keep building up your trading account and build up your firewall..

I am just afraid of some things when it comes to pursuing a risk-based career. Trading account is good, stops are good. I am getting closer every week. The final step is just to let go. Harder to do the second time in life than the first.

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  #3758 (permalink)
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GaryD View Post
I am just afraid of some things when it comes to pursuing a risk-based career. Trading account is good, stops are good. I am getting closer every week. The final step is just to let go. Harder to do the second time in life than the first.

Y, I agree.. Trading will always be around and the best part of the trade day is usually the 1'st 90 minutes anyways..

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  #3759 (permalink)
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Jedi View Post
Trading is not that different from other aspects of life and the same principles often apply; manage risk first, push your luck second. I think that means you should not quit your day job until your trading results are so solid that this decision becomes very easy to make.


Where I am in this process, is when I have distractions or when I feel rushed, or confined to a time period, I do not trade as well. So the true results of full time seem like they will not be known until I eliminate the outside obligations. I know for a fact that my average hold time and average win size increases considerably when I have nothing else going on.

I have gone 30 days without a losing day probably 10 times or so, have not kept track, but the amount I made is small relative to what I can make in a "real" job. And the back and forth motion of wins versus losses feels different than having a budget and knowing I am under it. But, that is changing as well.

I really only have myself in the way, scared to walk away from something that is a significant income for something where the end result is completely unknown. Even though I have not worked for someone else for 20 years, and I would think that entreprenurial view, never receiving a "paycheck", no benefits, no vacation days, unless I got up and made something happen, would be an easy transition.

But just as some people will never go into business for themselves, preferring the "certainty" of a set schedule, defined responsibilities, predetermined salary, 401k, etc., being independent is something I know well and I no longer question whether or not I will be able to make it from month to month, in the buseiness I am familiar with. But it took a few years of being in business for myself before that feeling of always needing to work to find the next thing (which I always have even today), changed from something that felt like uncertainty to something that felt OK.

My guess, from knowing how my life has worked, and from receiving input here, is that the uncertainty of trading changes from being uncomfortable to being normal over time. For example, @reseacher247's comments about things like, "this is one trade of thousands" (or something like that), helped me see there is a similarity in anything where you are on your own.

When I filed my bankrupcty, I went to a lot of friends to talk about it first. One of them, who is possibly the most succesful guy I know, shared that he had moved back in with his parents more than once in his career. He told me, "once you now how to make money, it is easy to do again". And in some ways he was right, and I am doing it all over again. So, why not just run with that and be content? Because, I did it before, and it was not something I enjoyed doing then or now. The developing part, yes that was something I loved. But, by that point I was completely autonomous. I found the deal, put it together, did the analysis, the conceptuals... it was creative, artistic, fun. And I did not need the money, so the time was a lot more free. I may still work 80 hours, but only if I was enjoying it (which sometimes, I do).

The business I started a few years ago is one where I am on call nearly 24/7, always on the go in airports and motels and rental cars, and constantly on an extremely tight schedule. 24 hours is a big deal. It is the indentured servant part that grinds on me, and I believe my trading is good enough where I could walk away, but the "real job" provides the comfort of a long history, I do not ever wonder if I will make money, ever.

Really, my issue in a nutshell, is that the thought of trying it for a year, failing, and starting over a 3rd time, while possible (and truthfully maybe even easier since I fell apart once all ready), is just something that kind of lurks in the back of my mind and casues me to have more fear than I wish I did. And fear and trading do not mix well. If I don't take the leap, I will never have the chance to develop the comfort of just knowing things will work out, as I do in my work today.

I am drawing some similarities between my experiences, starting to relate an unknown in one world to an unknown in another. For example, my jobs typically last 6-8 weeks. That means, I am always interviewing for a new job, always. From what I know today, I have no idea what I will be doing in October, if anything. My calendar today says I will be unemployed. But, the reality is, I never am. I just know that, but for no good reason other than, I just know. My guess is if I was on my own in trading for a year or so, the uncertainty would fade away, and the belief about the future would be no different.


Thanks for your thoughts, it is always good to get outside stimulus to help get things onto paper.

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  #3760 (permalink)
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GaryD View Post
Where I am in this process, is when I have distractions or when I feel rushed, or confined to a time period, I do not trade as well. So the true results of full time seem like they will not be known until I eliminate the outside obligations. I know for a fact that my average hold time and average win size increases considerably when I have nothing else going on.

I have gone 30 days without a losing day probably 10 times or so, have not kept track, but the amount I made is small relative to what I can make in a "real" job. And the back and forth motion of wins versus losses feels different than having a budget and knowing I am under it. But, that is changing as well.

I really only have myself in the way, scared to walk away from something that is a significant income for something where the end result is completely unknown. Even though I have not worked for someone else for 20 years, and I would think that entreprenurial view, never receiving a "paycheck", no benefits, no vacation days, unless I got up and made something happen, would be an easy transition.

But just as some people will never go into business for themselves, preferring the "certainty" of a set schedule, defined responsibilities, predetermined salary, 401k, etc., being independent is something I know well and I no longer question whether or not I will be able to make it from month to month, in the buseiness I am familiar with. But it took a few years of being in business for myself before that feeling of always needing to work to find the next thing (which I always have even today), changed from something that felt like uncertainty to something that felt OK.

My guess, from knowing how my life has worked, and from receiving input here, is that the uncertainty of trading changes from being uncomfortable to being normal over time. For example, @reseacher247's comments about things like, "this is one trade of thousands" (or something like that), helped me see there is a similarity in anything where you are on your own.

When I filed my bankrupcty, I went to a lot of friends to talk about it first. One of them, who is possibly the most succesful guy I know, shared that he had moved back in with his parents more than once in his career. He told me, "once you now how to make money, it is easy to do again". And in some ways he was right, and I am doing it all over again. So, why not just run with that and be content? Because, I did it before, and it was not something I enjoyed doing then or now. The developing part, yes that was something I loved. But, by that point I was completely autonomous. I found the deal, put it together, did the analysis, the conceptuals... it was creative, artistic, fun. And I did not need the money, so the time was a lot more free. I may still work 80 hours, but only if I was enjoying it (which sometimes, I do).

The business I started a few years ago is one where I am on call nearly 24/7, always on the go in airports and motels and rental cars, and constantly on an extremely tight schedule. 24 hours is a big deal. It is the indentured servant part that grinds on me, and I believe my trading is good enough where I could walk away, but the "real job" provides the comfort of a long history, I do not ever wonder if I will make money, ever.

Really, my issue in a nutshell, is that the thought of trying it for a year, failing, and starting over a 3rd time, while possible (and truthfully maybe even easier since I fell apart once all ready), is just something that kind of lurks in the back of my mind and casues me to have more fear than I wish I did. And fear and trading do not mix well. If I don't take the leap, I will never have the chance to develop the comfort of just knowing things will work out, as I do in my work today.

I am drawing some similarities between my experiences, starting to relate an unknown in one world to an unknown in another. For example, my jobs typically last 6-8 weeks. That means, I am always interviewing for a new job, always. From what I know today, I have no idea what I will be doing in October, if anything. My calendar today says I will be unemployed. But, the reality is, I never am. I just know that, but for no good reason other than, I just know. My guess is if I was on my own in trading for a year or so, the uncertainty would fade away, and the belief about the future would be no different.


Thanks for your thoughts, it is always good to get outside stimulus to help get things onto paper.

I think I understand your situation and the dilemma of your choice a bit better now. I agree that it is a tough decision and an uncomfortable one and ONLY YOU will know the right decision because you're in it. I do think you're seeing all the elements correctly. The only thing I might add is the planning process to explore your goal. Perhaps you don't have to walk away from your business but pursue new business less.. Create some downtime for yourself and trade full time during that downtime and see what happens.. Perhaps the decision will become more clear in doing so. If fear is hindering that decision, is it fear of uncertainty, fear less income or fear of consistency? Will your past trading performance be enough to support your current lifestyle with the income you're accustomed to? Though nothing ventured, nothing gained, you can still do it with a plan, a stop loss and manage risk with a few initial scales..

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