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The PandaWarrior Chronicles
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The PandaWarrior Chronicles

  #1621 (permalink)
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lancelottrader View Post
I'm glad you're health is improving.
I wonder sometimes how much my trading could be impacting my health. Although I've always been healthy, eaten well..and exercised..I get constant adrenaline rushes when I trade. I often get very stressed out. I feel my heart beating 100 miles an hour ( this is usually after entering a trade when I have just had a couple of losses already) and I know my blood pressure is probably spiking. I get headaches for hours sometimes after a stressful session.
Besides those reactions, I do fairly well with my trading... but being I recently turned 50..I am concerned a bit about the physical toll it's putting on me.

Do you feel your trading had any impact on your heart condition or do you remain mostly calm when you trade?

I used to have the sweats, the shakes, the you name it and I had it....a session would leave me drenched and exhausted. Somewhere along the way, that left.

I think it has been in part due to a few factors.
  • I've gotten used to it??????
  • I'm more confident in my set ups and know they have a certain expectancy
  • Some stress management ideas
  • Limiting my trading hours although after today I might revisit this.... lol...
  • Embracing the uncertainty (I think this the most important)

It sounds to me like you are setting yourself up for a heart attack. Stress plays really unpleasant tricks on your body. Even if you don't think it's affecting you it is. My suggestion is you need to find a way to deal with the stress before it kills you. Change your trading style to something less stressful, perhaps automate it somehow, turn it over to a manager or another trader you respect with instructions on how you want it traded, etc......or find that place inside yourself that embraces the unknown and allows the market to play itself out. After all, all you're doing is placing a bet that something might happen. Figure out how much you are willing to lose to find out if you are wrong and embrace it.....let it run if you are right....

Something I've just started doing is adding to a trade. Starting small and adding when right. The great traders do this while us scared retail traders are looking for scale outs.......this has helped with my initial stress when entering a trade. I'm wrong small and even though its been just this week, I'm right big....its the old adage, shit like a bird and eat like an elephant. Most do it backwards, they eat like a bird and shit like an elephant. I think this will make a huge difference in both my losers and winners over time.

If you want to talk more specifics about your situation, PM me. I'm always happy to assist if I can.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #1622 (permalink)
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PandaWarrior View Post
I used to have the sweats, the shakes, the you name it and I had it....a session would leave me drenched and exhausted. Somewhere along the way, that left.

I think it has been in part due to a few factors.
  • I've gotten used to it??????
  • I'm more confident in my set ups and know they have a certain expectancy
  • Some stress management ideas
  • Limiting my trading hours although after today I might revisit this.... lol...
  • Embracing the uncertainty (I think this the most important)

It sounds to me like you are setting yourself up for a heart attack. Stress plays really unpleasant tricks on your body. Even if you don't think it's affecting you it is. My suggestion is you need to find a way to deal with the stress before it kills you. Change your trading style to something less stressful, perhaps automate it somehow, turn it over to a manager or another trader you respect with instructions on how you want it traded, etc......or find that place inside yourself that embraces the unknown and allows the market to play itself out. After all, all you're doing is placing a bet that something might happen. Figure out how much you are willing to lose to find out if you are wrong and embrace it.....let it run if you are right....

Something I've just started doing is adding to a trade. Starting small and adding when right. The great traders do this while us scared retail traders are looking for scale outs.......this has helped with my initial stress when entering a trade. I'm wrong small and even though its been just this week, I'm right big....its the old adage, shit like a bird and eat like an elephant. Most do it backwards, they eat like a bird and shit like an elephant. I think this will make a huge difference in both my losers and winners over time.

If you want to talk more specifics about your situation, PM me. I'm always happy to assist if I can.

Thank you so much.

Failure is not an option
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  #1623 (permalink)
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lancelottrader View Post

Do you feel your trading had any impact on your heart condition or do you remain mostly calm when you trade?

I didn't answer this directly....

No I do not feel like my trading affected my heart condition. My entire family on both sides has some form of heart disease. All my numbers are good. There is no reason for me to have heart disease other than the genetic factor.

This is the only thing that worries me. Are my diet and exercise changes going to be enough? The great unknown for me....and I have to embrace it just like trading....if I'm wrong, its not just a ten tick stop, its life or death. That freaks me out a bit.....but I'm learning slowly to be ok with it......slowly....

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #1624 (permalink)
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Just take it slowly, @PandaWarrior. In a sense we all are between live and death - anybody can be hit today by car, murdered on streets, choke on chicken bone. It's only about probabilities. But as we are traders and play a game of probabilities every day we know that any single event can have absolutely random probability of occurring. We don't have millions of lives to decide scientifically whether to fly on a plan or drive by a car with regards to accident probability. It either happens or not for us. Take is same way. Relax and let it be. All the kudos to you.

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  #1625 (permalink)
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lancelottrader View Post
I often get very stressed out. I feel my heart beating 100 miles an hour ( this is usually after entering a trade when I have just had a couple of losses already) and I know my blood pressure is probably spiking. I get headaches for hours sometimes after a stressful session.
Besides those reactions, I do fairly well with my trading... but being I recently turned 50..I am concerned a bit about the physical toll it's putting on me.

Do you feel your trading had any impact on your heart condition or do you remain mostly calm when you trade?

@lancelottrader

Don't hesitate to just go to you doctor, get checked out and then you will know if there is anything to worry about.

Most likely your heart and body are just keeping up with the pace of modern life and those signs are signs that you are indeed alive !! Go get it sorted with a doc.

Think of it as the ultimate risk management !

p

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  #1626 (permalink)
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I've begun using my handwritten journal more and more. I find the process somewhat cathartic vs typing here in this thread. I can't read what I wrote because my handwriting is crap but it still helps me think.

From a trading standpoint, I've begun thinking about the POP aka, The Phantom of the Pits.

He has three rules:

1. Assume you are wrong when entering a trade. Let the market prove you correct. Never assume you are correct. Positions established must be removed unless proven correct.

2. Press your winners without exception. This means you must if possible add to winners.

3. A trader must know when and how to take profits based on his/her method/timeframe/style/instrument. (Paraphrased from the book)

The key point of rule three is there is no optimum way of taking profits. Each method has advantages and drawbacks. The trader must act in his/her best interest and within the confines of rules one and 2.

In light of these rules I've begun the following:
  • Entering trades with a single lot (My max is 3-5 depending on a couple of factors)
  • Looking to add to the trade once its gone in my direction some distance
  • Exiting the entire position at a predetermined measured move from entry zone

Over the last few days, I've had varying degrees of success with this. I sought the advice of a seasoned trader here on the forum whose advice to me was to find the method and frequency of adding that suited me. That scaling in and out was purely subjective. Another member PM'd me and told me I was on the right track, gave me some personal examples of his success (which I won't repeat here, most of you would not believe me if I told you what he said as his success using a scale in approach was/is far beyond what most of us would imagine is possible).

These last few days have seen a few larger than normal losses due to improper scaling in and some larger than normal winners due to scaling in.

The result was that yesterday, I was in a winning trade right out of the opening gate, my plan had been to add to this trade once it got going, however, I chickened out and closed it during the first pullback. Then price proceeded to climb to my measured move target some 60 ticks away after first presenting me with an opportunity to scale in. This would have been a wonderful trade had I not chickened out.

Last night in my paper journal. I wrote one thing: Tomorrow, my only job is to hold a trade past the first pull back and add to the trade somewhere in the pull back or HH or LL area.

Today, after a couple of small losers following rule 1, I entered a trade with a single lot, at this point I was down about half my daily loss limit. As price got going in my favor, I recognized I needed to hold and follow my plan from last night. So I did.

As price pulled back, thankfully it was a pretty small pullback, I endured that, and placed my buy stop at the higher high. Don't be afraid to buy the higher high or sell the lower low I once heard a very successful trader say. In a trend, just enter and let it ride. So I did.

Price took me in on my add on, continued going my way, then pulled back again. At this point, I was nervous and reluctant to add again so finished the trade with only the two units. However, I had an opportunity to add another unit and in the future, I'll try to put this one on as well.

Eventually price made it to my target area and traded through that zone by a few ticks, then reversed and spent the rest of the day trending the opposite direction. None of which I got because I quit at that point.

The net result, I went from being down half my daily limit to being positive around my daily average. A nice profit swing to be sure.

A major takeaway from these two days:

There are two:

1. Don't chicken out.

2. I learned where my add on will be risk free most of the time. It turns out when my second entry order was triggered, my blended entry was several ticks away from where I would put my stop. Which meant that from this point forward, my trade was completely and totally risk free. I would either earn a few ticks or a break even if I chose to give the trade a bit more breathing room. Which is what I did. I went BE and let it ride from there. As price got closer to my target, I started tightening up the stop by trailing the small swings on the chart, once it got within a few ticks, I trailed two trend bars back and that was it. Price filled my target and my day was done.

The trade was executed with near perfection. Almost by accident in some regards, the perfect add on was just random in terms of where I put it on, however, I now have a benchmark on where to look to add with regard to the number of profit ticks I need before I add on.

Its been a good day in more ways than this but I'm really pleased about the lessons I've learned over the last few days. I recognize and realize there is far more to learn but I know this one thing. If I lose small (rule 1) and win big (rule 2) my equity curve can't help but have a nice upward slope to it.

The only real wild card is rule three....where to take profits and for the most part, I have a consistent and repeatable method to do that. I just need to allow the trade time to fulfill that method.

Today's chart....losers are not plotted....I am interested in only remembering this winning trade as an example of what to do.....I already figured out why my losers didn't work so no point in rubbing it in here.

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Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #1627 (permalink)
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PandaWarrior View Post

2. Press your winners without exception.

What if that were your focus, and let it hit your breakeven if it wants to? Risk 7 ticks on one, 10 ticks on another, 12 ticks on the third. It moves hard, double up, and risk losing the whole trade to breakeven.

What would change if you broke even on it?

What would change if it ran?

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  #1628 (permalink)
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GaryD View Post
What if that were your focus, and let it hit your breakeven if it wants to? Risk 7 ticks on one, 10 ticks on another, 12 ticks on the third. It moves hard, double up, and risk losing the whole trade to breakeven.

What would change if you broke even on it?

What would change if it ran?

All excellent questions. None of which I've answered yet. I'm just getting into this. But....

I think the correct response to all three are similar.

What happens if it breaks even? Oh well. Thats trading.

What happens if it runs? Wonderful, thats trading with the exception that if I can, I should add again. Keeping rule 1 in mind and following rule 2.

What remains to be seen is my emotional state if after waiting for a setup and trigger, I enter, press the trade and it ends up being BE. How will I feel? Will I want to revenge trade to make up for it? Enter next time with larger size initially? Chase the runner? Who knows? Only time will tell.

However, I am slowly becoming much more comfortable with the uncertainty of trading and the apparent random distribution of winners and losers. This is why I like rule one so much. It demands I enter small so the losses are small. And why rule 2 is so important. You win big when you win.

I forgot to mention I was reading a trader the other day whose win rate is around 25-30% but yet makes in the mid 6 figures every year. Why does he make money? He presses the winners. He loses with 1-3 units and wins with 5-10 units....I don't know how many lots are in the units but even if its only 1 lot per unit, the math still works.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #1629 (permalink)
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PandaWarrior View Post
....and I have to embrace it just like trading....if I'm wrong, its not just a ten tick stop, its life or death. That freaks me out a bit.....but I'm learning slowly to be ok with it......slowly....

What if you trade like it doesn't matter, because we all die anyway?

OR,

What if you trade as if your health depended on it? (that one is deep.)


We trade for a lot of reasons, but trading just because "it is something to improve on", makes it more relaxed.

Forget about the outcome, follow what you know to do, and stop caring so much. Does it matter, really? Can you trade as if you were giving advice? I have a hard time doing that, we all do, but it smells of irony.

Please know that I am wishing you well.

None of it is worth risking your life, but no one ever said that is required. So how would you trade then?


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  #1630 (permalink)
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GaryD View Post
What if you trade like it doesn't matter, because we all die anyway?

OR,

What if you trade as if your health depended on it? (that one is deep.)


We trade for a lot of reasons, but trading just because "it is something to improve on", makes it more relaxed.

Forget about the outcome, follow what you know to do, and stop caring so much. Does it matter, really? Can you trade as if you were giving advice? I have a hard time doing that, we all do, but it smells of irony.

Please know that I am wishing you well.

None of it is worth risking your life, but no one ever said that is required. So how would you trade then?


I have a theory born from my days in real estate. Buyers and or potential clients can smell desperation. They use it to drive a harder bargain than they otherwise would have attempted. So in the early days when I was desperate, I learned to conceal my fear and desperation much like an actor conceals his stage fright and performs anyway. I got good at not caring as this was the only way I could figure out how to close with conviction....like this particular sale/client/deal did not matter one bit......and I started closing more deals. I think people like dealing with those that display confidence.

In the same way, I think trading without caring about the money is the proper way to trade.....difficult to be sure but proper. It allows you to focus on the process as though you were teaching while trading.....something I did frequently in the real estate business. I spent a lot of time mentoring others and you must do it correctly when you are on stage like that.....in the process, I became much better at what I did....to the point of it being effortless....my eventual goal for trading.

And in some respects, my life (financial at least) does depend on my trading......therefore I must trade like it doesn't. Hows that for a paradox?

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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