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David_R's Trading Journey Journal (Pls comment)


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David_R's Trading Journey Journal (Pls comment)

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  #61 (permalink)
 David_R 
Market Wizard
San Jose, Ca
 
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I really don't want to post today, but I committed to myself that I would keep a journal.

Ben B has been mentoring me and I felt I was making some improvements as can be seen in the last few posts. Today i traded alone and things fell apart. I lacked the confidence in the trades and ended up messing with them once in. The morning should have been very profitable and I should have been done before 9AM pacific time. Unfortunately that did not happen. Once I messed up the first trade and it moved with out me it just continued. I guess I should have called it quits for the day, but kept thinking I could recover some losses. Nope. Anyway, one chart. Not really in the mood to make details of footprint charts and volume charts of divergences etc., so I just show the Ninja chart with markers and my levels to trade for the day.

I did my homework the night before and selected my levels off the market profile. The market traded to the levels and planned, but the execution and management was another story. No winners today. Today is an F-- in every and all facets.

D

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  #62 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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David,

Congrats are in order for posting. It is hard to do, but you will surely benefit from it in the long run. Each day you report a bad day to the journal, the next day you will bear that in mind and focus more on doing a good job.

Even if you have days and days and days of losers, it is all very beneficial. It will help you realize the method itself is not working the way you had planned, assuming you are giving yourself "A" grades for its execution. If your execution is below B, then perhaps the method works but you still need more time to trade it well.

Either way, you benefit from everything you are doing here. So I strongly encourage you to keep it up, it will be well worth it!

Mike

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  #63 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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BTW,

I wanted to also say that trading with a buddy is a really great tool, assuming they have a similar style as you. You've got to be open and honest with them, preferably you can see their DOM/trades and they can see yours. Then you share your rules with each other and that extra accountability can really help.

I posted a story about this in my advice thread a few weeks ago (was talking about Gary and I trading together) and how amazing the psychology is and how much and how strongly it works against you.

Mike

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  #64 (permalink)
 David_R 
Market Wizard
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The saga continues and so does the not so good outcome. Today I grade myself a D overall. The first problem is I was not up in time to catch the open and a long setup at one of my predefined levels. The second problem is that I traded more than my plan defines. The third problem is i traded a 2 setups not in my plan, a breakout of the high of day and a double top at the high of day. But of course the main problem is me. Like yesterday just one chart.

The text got cut off, but the third level to trade today was yesterdays POC at 10884

D

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  #65 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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David,

Why did you trade the last two trades of the day?

Mike

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  #66 (permalink)
 David_R 
Market Wizard
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Big Mike View Post
David,

Why did you trade the last two trades of the day?

Mike

Mike, the first one, the long I "thought" we would get a higher high. The market was strong all day and I have been burned more times than I care to admit shorting into strong moves up. Of course it was more of a fakeout and I know that it was a bad trade to take and I do kick myself for taking it. The second one of the last two, was based on the red candle that closed on its low, but at one time was higher than the green candle before it. The red candle also had more volume than the green up candle, so I felt selling was coming. This is more VSA stuff which for some reason I can't get out of my head and is not supposed to be part of my plan. Additionally, I think I took the last trade because I was pissed and frustrated because I watched the market move 100 points with out me all day and nothing in my plan helped me to participate except for the opening area of 10790 which I missed.

D

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  #67 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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David,

It seems that 90% of your reply was trying to defend your position to take the trades. Only the very last sentence of the reply is the real reason you took them.

You said yourself in your first post that you didn't follow your plan. My question was to stimulate you to determine why you didn't follow your plan.

It is only when you start to clearly recognize, as you did in the final sentence of your reply, the true reasons you break your own rules that you will be able to catch yourself prior to doing so in the future.

For instance, after a lot of work specifically in this area you will still have a desire to overtrade and a desire to trade emotionally. But, you will also be able to stop yourself by clearly remembering all the times that you broke your rules before, and the outcome and result of doing so.

This is why some say (myself included) that one of the worst things that a trader can experience is negative reinforcement. For instance, two big winners on those trades where you broke your rules. This will set you back a long way and it takes a lot of work to realize that you have rules for a reason. You must trade your rules. You can change the rules if you want, 1 or 2 rules at a time no sooner than every 2 weeks, but you should trade your rules as exact as possible in the meantime.

I know you know this stuff already. I'm trying to empower you to change and find what you need to break the cycle.

Mike

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  #68 (permalink)
 David_R 
Market Wizard
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Big Mike View Post
David,

It seems that 90% of your reply was trying to defend your position to take the trades. Only the very last sentence of the reply is the real reason you took them.

You said yourself in your first post that you didn't follow your plan. My question was to stimulate you to determine why you didn't follow your plan.

It is only when you start to clearly recognize, as you did in the final sentence of your reply, the true reasons you break your own rules that you will be able to catch yourself prior to doing so in the future.

For instance, after a lot of work specifically in this area you will still have a desire to overtrade and a desire to trade emotionally. But, you will also be able to stop yourself by clearly remembering all the times that you broke your rules before, and the outcome and result of doing so.

This is why some say (myself included) that one of the worst things that a trader can experience is negative reinforcement. For instance, two big winners on those trades where you broke your rules. This will set you back a long way and it takes a lot of work to realize that you have rules for a reason. You must trade your rules. You can change the rules if you want, 1 or 2 rules at a time no sooner than every 2 weeks, but you should trade your rules as exact as possible in the meantime.

I know you know this stuff already. I'm trying to empower you to change and find what you need to break the cycle.

Mike

Mike,

Thank you for the feedback. I appreciate it a great deal and that's not BS. I think I may have taken your question to literally. It certainly wasn't my intention to defend or justify taking those trades. I thought when you asked why I took them you wanted to know the thought process, but of course that really isn't important.

"It is only when you start to clearly recognize, as you did in the final sentence of your reply, the true reasons you break your own rules that you will be able to catch yourself prior to doing so in the future." I totally agree with your statement and I am hopeful that recognizing these reasons and documenting it that it will help me in catching myself in the future.

Thank again,

D

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  #69 (permalink)
FuturesTrader99
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David_R View Post
Additionally, I think I took the last trade because I was pissed and frustrated because I watched the market move 100 points with out me all day and nothing in my plan helped me to participate except for the opening area of 10790 which I missed.

Hi David,

Been there done that, I can totally relate. There's billions upon billions of dollars sloshing around in this market, moving back and forth like there's no tomorrow, and all we can manage to capture is a few pennies here and there ..... if we're lucky.
Would you believe me if I told you I used to make around 50 trades per day trying to chase those elusive institutional money ? The only one who got rich was my broker.
I still fight the urge to overtrade to this very day. I never gave the idea of journalling any serious consideration until I came across this forum. It's tedious, time consuming, and a lot of work for what I previously thought was little reward. But I've come to the realization that all paths do lead to Rome. In other words, consistency is the holy grail. Chasing is reactive. Planning is proactive. Sounds cliche, but you really do have make it a habit to begin with the end in mind. What do you really want, and how serious are you to committing to attaining it?
I believe everyone's journey towards becoming a successful trader must go through what it personally means to them to be consistent. Day in, day out. For some, it comes easy to them, for they have a natural talent for this vocation. For myself, I need to work at it not because I don't have the skill set, but because I have all this other "stuff". That is how the light bulb clicked with me, which motivated me enough to start the journalling, so I can shine the scope on what baggage I am carrying and how do deal with it. Those problems will never go away until I figure out how to deal with them.
We are competing with black boxes on the other side of the trade. The least we can do is execute consistently, almost like the machines........

Sorry if I've sounded too preachy......

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  #70 (permalink)
 rassi 
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Sometimes when you try to ride a horse after a donkey I throws you off a few times, it doesn't hurt too much but makes you more determined to ride it properly as you know its much better than that old donkey your used to!

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