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The Way of the AttitudeTrader
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The Way of the AttitudeTrader

  #101 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, T4
Broker/Data: IQFeed
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AttitudeTrader's Avatar
 
Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
Thanks: 6,868 given, 857 received

Training Day 38

Mission Plan: 2013.03.12.218-238

All off-base assignments completed. Reporting for duty.
I was able to get everything squared away yesterday afternoon, and I need to be here working, so I'm in the office today after all.

Kevlar, bullets & batteries checked and ready...
08:25 T-Minus 5...weapons live...head on swivel...eyes peeled...prepared to engage.

Trade #232
08:36 Short on [Core] setup. Win or lose, it's irrelevant. Record the trade, watch it, and learn...
08:40 Price actually touched my intended exit level, but didn't exceed it by 1 tick to hit my MIT order.
08:45 Price pushed all the way back up beyond my entry price.
08:46 Feeling a lot of anxiety about this coming back up. Really?! What the **** for?! It's ONE trade out of the THOUSANDS that are coming! Get over it and focus on what your next move will be!
08:52 Exited trade at MKT 3 minutes prior to report per my rules.
08:52 No Joy. -6 ticks.
Record results, stabilize/regroup, and prepare for the next assault. Focus only on the task at hand.

Trade #233
09:20 Short on [Core] setup. Win or lose, it's irrelevant. Record the trade, watch it, and learn...
09:28 I was planning to invoke my [COS1] rule, but decided to take this [Core] setup. Regretting it now...
09:39 No Joy. -10 ticks.
Record results, stabilize/regroup, and prepare for the next assault. Focus only on the task at hand.

No entry
10:06 Price touched my entry price, but because my MIT order is 1 tick below that, I didn't get a fill on this valid setup. Price reached target level, so trade is over.

No entry
11:25 Price touched my entry price multiple times over a 20 minute period, but because my MIT order is 1 tick below that, I didn't get a fill on this valid setup. Price reached target level, so trade is over.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
13:30 Friday new entry cut-off time. Finished for the day and week.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: I followed my plan, but it was a dull day and I had a couple of setups that didn't get filled.
    -
  • Observations: I'm finding myself in a little bit of a down mood regarding my trading right now. I think it has to do with the reduced number of setups I'm having now and dealing with the outcomes of the decisions I'm having to make. Things aren't quite as "clear" as they were in Phase 1. I'll have to adjust my attitude about this over the weekend.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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Last edited by AttitudeTrader; March 16th, 2013 at 12:39 PM.
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  #102 (permalink)
Site Administrator
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Happy Birthday @AttitudeTrader



Mike

Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.

Need help?
1) Stop changing things. No new indicators, charts, or methods. Be consistent with what is in front of you first.
2) Start a journal and post to it daily with the trades you made to show your strengths and weaknesses.
3) Set goals for yourself to reach daily. Make them about how you trade, not how much money you make.
4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance.
5) Where to start as a trader? Watch this webinar and read this thread for hundreds of questions and answers.
6)
Help using the forum? Watch this video to learn general tips on using the site.

If you want
to support our community, become an Elite Member.

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  #103 (permalink)
 Vendor: www.iqfeed.net 
Omaha NE
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Robert Carrillo's Avatar
 
Posts: 271 since Jun 2012
Thanks: 234 given, 374 received


Happy Birthday AT!

First time I've commented on a journal, and I'd suggest it be required reading for anybody considering a (successful) career as a trader. Your dedication to the process, and not the results, is inspiring to say the least.


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  #104 (permalink)
Elite Member
Bethesda, Maryland
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Favorite Futures: stocks
 
Posts: 5 since May 2011
Thanks: 36 given, 2 received

One word... DEDICATION.

Fantastic journal AT. Keep at it.


AttitudeTrader View Post
Mission Plan: 2013.03.12.218-238

All off-base assignments completed. Reporting for duty.
I was able to get everything squared away yesterday afternoon, and I need to be here working, so I'm in the office today after all.

Kevlar, bullets & batteries checked and ready...
08:25 T-Minus 5...weapons live...head on swivel...eyes peeled...prepared to engage.

Trade #232
08:36 Short on [Core] setup. Win or lose, it's irrelevant. Record the trade, watch it, and learn...
08:40 Price actually touched my intended exit level, but didn't exceed it by 1 tick to hit my MIT order.
08:45 Price pushed all the way back up beyond my entry price.
08:46 Feeling a lot of anxiety about this coming back up. Really?! What the **** for?! It's ONE trade out of the THOUSANDS that are coming! Get over it and focus on what your next move will be!
08:52 Exited trade at MKT 3 minutes prior to report per my rules.
08:52 No Joy. -6 ticks.
Record results, stabilize/regroup, and prepare for the next assault. Focus only on the task at hand.

Trade #233
09:20 Short on [Core] setup. Win or lose, it's irrelevant. Record the trade, watch it, and learn...
09:28 I was planning to invoke my [COS1] rule, but decided to take this [Core] setup. Regretting it now...
09:39 No Joy. -10 ticks.
Record results, stabilize/regroup, and prepare for the next assault. Focus only on the task at hand.

No entry
10:06 Price touched my entry price, but because my MIT order is 1 tick below that, I didn't get a fill on this valid setup. Price reached target level, so trade is over.

No entry
11:25 Price touched my entry price multiple times over a 20 minute period, but because my MIT order is 1 tick below that, I didn't get a fill on this valid setup. Price reached target level, so trade is over.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
13:30 Friday new entry cut-off time. Finished for the day and week.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: I followed my plan, but it was a dull day and I had a couple of setups that didn't get filled.
    -
  • Observations: I'm finding myself in a little bit of a down mood regarding my trading right now. I think it has to do with the reduced number of setups I'm having now and dealing with the outcomes of the decisions I'm having to make. Things aren't quite as "clear" as they were in Phase 1. I'll have to adjust my attitude about this over the weekend.

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  #105 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, T4
Broker/Data: IQFeed
Favorite Futures: 6E
 
AttitudeTrader's Avatar
 
Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
Thanks: 6,868 given, 857 received

Weekend Review and Stats

A review of the week

Because I have more latitude in my decision-making now, I'm feeling like my trading isn't as "consistent" as it was before. I'm following my rules, but I'm also feeling unsure of myself because of the discretion I have. I'm experiencing the regret of making a decision to do one thing and then watching as the other thing works out better.

Regardless of how I feel though, it would appear that on balance, my decisions have worked out to my benefit, and were probably the reason I had a positive P/L this week.

I also noticed, more than usual this week, that having a daily loss limit (which I've had from day one of this training exercise) definitely takes some of the fear out of my trading. Mostly because I know that I'm only going to be able to take a certain number of losing trades, and that tends to make me feel a little more relaxed.

A look at the stats

Expectancy is trending down again, but I think I'm realizing something in a little more profound way now than before. It's becoming clearer to me that the trends, up or down, in my expectancy (and P/L) are about the method and not about me. In other words, I know that my profitability hasn't suffered due to my inability to follow my rules and execute appropriately. It has only to do with the method/rules I'm following.

And when I look at it that way it gives me a sense of relief, because I'm proving to myself that, even with a mediocre method, I'm developing the ability to make profits from my trading over time. That may not sound like a big deal because I think everybody believes that they're already at this point (I did).

But the power I've gained from knowing that I'm able to follow my plan, through thick and thin, has helped to begin solidifying my confidence in one very big part of the trading puzzle. And I think that it is an extremely valuable thing to have going for me.

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I find it interesting that I'm feeling a little let down by this week's P/L (+$168.50), when just a few weeks ago, simply having a positive week was enough to make me very happy. I'm sure it has something to do with having such a good week #7 and such a bad week #8, as well as the topic I'm going to discuss below.

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I'm having a lot of losing days lately. I'm not sure what else to say about it at this point.

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Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans

When I started this journal I said, among other things, "I'm honestly frightened. I'm frightened because I'm afraid this is going to be painful; I'm afraid it's going to take a long time; the risk of bruising my ego here is large." Those statements are still just as true.

Some of the things I've shared so far, and some of the things I've done, have been a bit embarrassing, and today's post will push me even deeper into "ego-bruising" territory.

As much as I'd like to only be seen as strong, in control, and completely self-assured, that just isn't the case right now. I'm just as unsure, fallible and "human" as the next trader.

The vast majority of what I've been doing and discussing during this exercise so far has been to do with how I'm trying to improve my trading by following my plans, building my skills, using my tools wisely, etc. But I have only just hinted at the effect my "real life" has had on my trading and my attempt(s) to be successful as a trader.

I experienced the effect of those "real life" issues more than usual this week. They affected my overall attitude toward my trading results and the way I'm perceiving my future as a trader.

I make my living right now in a self-employed contractor arrangement (not salaried) where I only make money when the work is available to do. And the work has been slowing down dramatically over an alarming stretch of time - which means very little money is coming in, and I've had to use reserves that I'd put aside for slower times. This seems to automatically make me put more emphasis on my need to get to the point of being able to make money from my trading, which is not a good thing.

I also have over 200,000 miles on my trusty, but well-worn Explorer (a critical component of my "real" job), which is in need of quite a bit of (costly) maintenance, or replacement. I have my daughter's car to maintain, college tuition & related expenses to help with, a house that needs maintenance, and all the other expenses related to having a family and living in general. I have far more personal debt than I should, due mostly to turning down better paying jobs over the (many) years in order to remain freer to pursue my trading. I also have the bare-bones, absolute minimum account size to use for my trading, and if things don't turn around with my job/income, I'll have to use that money to live on.

Not only is this a far-less-than-ideal situation, but it is highly embarrassing to me to even be in it. So I've felt the pressure of that this week and I'm sure that that has had a large impact on how I'm viewing this week's (and prior week's) results.

However, the reason I'm sharing this is because I've spoken to and read comments made by traders over the years and just recently, who have mentioned some of their personal "issues." And I can't help but wonder how much those things are affecting them, and how they're dealing with it.

Those issues cover a whole range of peripheral things that affect their trading (but aren't limited to):
  • Insufficient capitalization - either because they lost it trading, had to use it for other things, or just didn't have it to begin with.
  • Insufficient time due to work - either they don't have flexibility in their job schedules, or they don't have the ability to change jobs because they need the money their current job provides.
  • Insufficient support from family/friends/work - some have spouses/partners, or even friends/associates who either harbor a non-verbalized resentment, or an outspoken antagonism, toward their "dream" to become a trader and the time they spend pursuing it.
The job of trading is hard enough for someone who has plenty of capital, plenty of time, and plenty of support. Throw in the personal situations we have, and it makes becoming a successful trader exponentially more difficult.

I'm very fortunate to have no resistance regarding my trading from the people around me, but I still have some serious issues that I have to deal with, or I'll be out of the trading game and watching from the sidelines.

The thing I'm finding from my own experience, and the experience of others, is that we all seem to have some combination of issues we have to deal with. I have to figure out what the **** I'm going to do to improve my situation, but so does (almost?) everyone else.

Doing the best you can, with what you've got, from where you are

It's easy for someone on the outside - especially someone who is already successful - to say, "You shouldn't even be trying to trade until you have a good passive income situation or capital cushion, the time to spend learning and trading during your market's session, and the support from your family, friends and colleagues."

But who the **** has all of that - much less at the same time?!

So for me, and I think for many, this becomes not a thing of "getting all your ducks in a row, and then starting your journey to becoming a successful trader." It becomes more like, "doing the best you can, with what you've got, from where you are."

I may be embarrassed by my current situation, but I still have a great deal of respect for myself. I'm proud of the father I've been to my daughter and the way that she has been able to witness me continually striving to become a better person. I'm proud of the husband I am to my wife. I'm proud of the son I am to my parents. I'm proud of the brother I am. I'm proud of the uncle I am to my nieces and nephew. I'm proud of the business partner I am. I'm proud of the way I've honored my debts to creditors as difficult as it has been. I'm even proud of how I treat our pets.

I'm proud of how much they all respect and trust me. I'm proud of the person I've become and that I'm becoming.

I realize that this is a much truer measure of my worth than my current situation is. And I will use it to fuel me as I continue forward.

Where the determination is, the way can be found

Benjamin Franklin
"Energy and persistence conquer all things." - Benjamin Franklin

I'm still coming to grips with the level of determination that is required to become a successful trader - especially a "retail" trader.

The first post (on my blog, which I've referred to before) of this journey keeps swirling around in the forefront of my mind and has become a guide for my activities over this weekend. I'll probably read it a few times over the course of this weekend to keep me focused on the attitude I need to maintain...

Where the determination is, the way can be found

"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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  #106 (permalink)
Elite Member
Tulsa OK
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader/Jigsaw Tools
Broker/Data: Deep Discount Trading/TT
Favorite Futures: ZN, ZB
 
Posts: 162 since Jul 2009
Thanks: 138 given, 206 received

This is the best post I have read here in a long time. I am going to reply to different parts of your post, hope you don't mind.


Quoting 
"I'm honestly frightened. I'm frightened because I'm afraid this is going to be painful; I'm afraid it's going to take a long time; the risk of bruising my ego here is large."

No pain no gain. An oversimplified statement, but something I believe is key to personal growth. Early on in my trading I came across a quote that has stuck with me. I can't remember exactly where it is from, but I think it came from a modernized version of The Art of War. "Without conflict, there is no opportunity for growth." Without any internal conflict, you probably would not be feeling pain, or you would not be worried about the possibility of pain. So don't shy away from this, the pain / potential pain you are feeling is the result of an internal conflict(s) that needs to be resolved. I absolutely believe the discovery of these internal conflicts and the things we do to remedy them are the real path to profitable trading. So when/if that pain comes, embrace and and do not lose heart, you are one step closer to the goal of profitable trading.

About your ego. You should do more research on it. Ego is usually a good thing, when it keeps you from doing things not acceptable within current moral boundaries dictated by the society you reside in. But a lot of time the needs of my ego usually run counterproductive to the results I am trying to achieve in trading. It's worth learning more about your ego and how to manage it.



Quoting 
I make my living right now in a self-employed contractor arrangement (not salaried) where I only make money when the work is available to do. And the work has been slowing down dramatically over an alarming stretch of time - which means very little money is coming in, and I've had to use reserves that I'd put aside for slower times. This seems to automatically make me put more emphasis on my need to get to the point of being able to make money from my trading, which is not a good thing.

I also have over 200,000 miles on my trusty, but well-worn Explorer (a critical component of my "real" job), which is in need of quite a bit of (costly) maintenance, or replacement. I have my daughter's car to maintain, college tuition & related expenses to help with, a house that needs maintenance, and all the other expenses related to having a family and living in general. I have far more personal debt than I should, due mostly to turning down better paying jobs over the (many) years in order to remain freer to pursue my trading. I also have the bare-bones, absolute minimum account size to use for my trading, and if things don't turn around with my job/income, I'll have to use that money to live on.

Not only is this a far-less-than-ideal situation, but it is highly embarrassing to me to even be in it. So I've felt the pressure of that this week and I'm sure that that has had a large impact on how I'm viewing this week's (and prior week's) results.

A few years ago I was in the same position as you regarding work, debt, savings and risk capital. If you read my journal you will see me interacting with Big Mike from time to time on what I was doing to lay a better financial foundation before getting back into trading.

There is nothing embarrassing about where your at. It is what it is, based on choices you have made in the past. The only thing to do is assess where you are, and start making new choices if you don't like the direction your headed. Embarrassment assumes you care about what others think about how you are living your life. There are very few people in this world you should allow to have that type of impact on you, and from what you wrote later in this post about the pride you have in how you have handled yourself as a husband, father, son and business partner, I see no need for embarrassment.

The thing you wrote about capitalization though, it added a tremendous amount of pressure on me when I started trying to trade to earn a living. That's when my greatest losses came. So there is a conflict here that needs to be resolved, although I'm not sure what the answer is.


Quoting 
Doing the best you can, with what you've got, from where you are

Absolutely. That's all you can do, but be real with yourself about "the best" part. There are a lot of things I did, picking up more work, cutting expenses like crazy, things that hurt at first but I don't even think twice about now. People walk into my house and feel sorry for us because we don't have TV, there is barely any furniture and what we do have was all free (i.e. not really nice at all). It's OK though, I know what I am working towards so their pitty does not bother me.

I bring this up to help you think about ways you could extend your savings.


Quoting 
Where the determination is, the way can be found

I love your attitude. Will Smith has some great things to say about success. Maybe you might find it helpful.
Motivation, Success, Greatness. -Will Smith - YouTube

Hopefully I did not come across wrong. I have a hard time articulating my thoughts. But man this was a great post, it resonated with me a lot, and I wanted to offer encouragement.

20,000,000
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  #107 (permalink)
Elite Member
Georgia, US
 
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AttitudeTrader View Post
Because I have more latitude in my decision-making now, I'm feeling like my trading isn't as "consistent" as it was before. I'm following my rules, but I'm also feeling unsure of myself because of the discretion I have. I'm experiencing the regret of making a decision to do one thing and then watching as the other thing works out better.

The discretionary trader experiences this hellacious "son of a bitch" (for lack of a more appropriate term) called uncertainty (as you said, "unsure of myself") at some point or another, regardless of whether he first learns to follow a plan and then learns to think for himself, or whether he learns to think for himself first and then to follow a plan later. I'd say you're simply experiencing what's natural when you go from having to not think and only follow orders, to having to make decisions and then being okay with the decision not working out as you would have liked. In the first case you have "no choice" but to follow rules, so it makes a loss more bearable, almost removing responsibility. It's the primary reason IMO why so many traders want so many rules--rules remove discretion, and thus responsibility. In the other case you have a choice, and you live with the results. So, what you are experiencing is quite normal I think; don't sweat it.


AttitudeTrader View Post
Where the determination is, the way can be found

I think you hit the nail on the head, that the way can be found with determination. Determination is not the way, but it can buy time to find a way. As long as we realize that determination alone is not enough, but that it is a tool and a prerequisite for success, then we are okay. It keeps us going during tough times, and without it we'll shrivel up under the heat of pressure and natural obstacles. What's a shame is when people do the same crap for years expecting different results, but who expect to improve because they have determination. But those who have it and use it for its intended purpose can actually benefit from it.

Hope you have a good week!

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  #108 (permalink)
Elite Member
los angeles, ca usa
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Favorite Futures: es
 
Posts: 703 since Feb 2013
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The thing I'm finding from my own experience, and the experience of others, is that we all seem to have some combination of issues we have to deal with. I have to figure out what the **** I'm going to do to improve my situation, but so does (almost?) everyone else.

Powerful, powerful statement.

I like you am finding myself in my trading and largely because of you have committed myself to a deeper level of honesty, transparency and self evaluation. Thank you for that.

If I could add one comment about embarrassment. It not only comes from how you perceive others to perceive you but its power comes from how you perceive yourself and your ability to manage, control and resolve issues important to you.


Last edited by stoplight; March 17th, 2013 at 11:47 AM.
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  #109 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, T4
Broker/Data: IQFeed
Favorite Futures: 6E
 
AttitudeTrader's Avatar
 
Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
Thanks: 6,868 given, 857 received

Thank You All


Big Mike View Post
Happy Birthday @AttitudeTrader

Mike

Thanks @Big Mike !


fosch View Post
One word... DEDICATION.

Fantastic journal AT. Keep at it.

Appreciate it @fosch !


jimjones26 View Post
This is the best post I have read here in a long time. I am going to reply to different parts of your post, hope you don't mind...

...Hopefully I did not come across wrong. I have a hard time articulating my thoughts. But man this was a great post, it resonated with me a lot, and I wanted to offer encouragement.

Thank you so much @jimjones26 . I truly appreciate the ideas and encouragement that have come from your own journey.

I actually have a little (4" x 4") 4-picture montage of Will Smith hanging on the wall of my office as a reminder.


josh View Post
The discretionary trader experiences this hellacious...

Well said @josh . Thanks!


stoplight View Post
I like you am finding myself in my trading and largely because of you have committed myself to a deeper level of honesty, transparency and self evaluation. Thank you for that.

If I could add one comment about embarrassment. It not only comes from how you perceive others to perceive you but its power comes from how you perceive yourself and your ability to manage, control and resolve issues important to you.

I appreciate that @stoplight , and I'm glad that it has encouraged you in that way.

Words have different meanings for each of us, and "embarrassed" is the word I would use right now for my situation. I'm well aware of what "being embarrassed" means with regard to our perception of ourselves and how we believe others perceive us. But my use of the word here should in no way imply that I'm buried in it. It is simply "where I am" right now, and is providing powerful motivation for me as I move forward.

Thanks for your comments.


Robert Carrillo View Post
Happy Birthday AT!

First time I've commented on a journal, and I'd suggest it be required reading for anybody considering a (successful) career as a trader. Your dedication to the process, and not the results, is inspiring to say the least.


I'm flattered and sincerely appreciate your comments @Robert Carrillo . In fact your comments mean quite a lot to me because, although you had no way of knowing, we've spoken on the phone on several occasions. I've been not only impressed by your professionalism, but your willingness to work with me and help me out. You clearly demonstrated that you cared and were trying to do whatever you could to meet my needs. I can actually recall where I was when I hung up after speaking to you one time and thinking, "Man, he was so helpful!" And I'm quite sure that was one of the times I had to cancel my service!

So, even though I've told you and others at IQFeed that I appreciate your service, on the phone and in electronic correspondence, I'll take this opportunity to thank you again for the way you do business. Your data, IMO, is of extremely high quality and very stable, but the customer service exhibited by everyone I've dealt with there is without a doubt one of the reasons I enjoy being subscribed to your data feed.

Thank you.

-AT

"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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  #110 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, T4
Broker/Data: IQFeed
Favorite Futures: 6E
 
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Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
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Training Day 39


Trading Plan: 2013.03.12.218-238

On time for work. (I'll explain this later.)
07:50 At my workstation and going through my morning prep checklist.

Pre-market look
No major US reports, but a lot of Eurozone speakers throughout the day today.
ES gapped down hard overnight and the range is larger than usual. This may be problematic for my stop distance.

Trade #234
08:36 Short on [Core] setup.
08:38 Stopped out. -10 ticks.
Price flowed right through my stop.

Trade #235
08:56 Long on [Core] setup.
08:56 Target 1. +6 ticks.
09:00 Price has not tested/pierced the overnight high. Will it turn down now?
09:00 Stop for Lot #2 to b/e. Price came back down within 2 ticks of my breakeven stop. Still not sure I like this b/e stop, but I have to keep it until this sample size is over and see if it helped/hurt.
09:02 Target 2. +10 ticks.

Trade #236
09:07 Long on [Core] setup.
09:09 Stopped out. -10 ticks.
Price had broken through O/N high and there was no visible resistance above, but that didn't matter.
****! Stopped out to the tick before price turned around and powered up to hit both of my target levels. Having to work to shake this one off.

Trade #237
09:24 Long on [Core] setup.
09:27 Target 1. +6 ticks.
09:28 Stop for Lot #2 to b/e.
09:36 Target 2. +9 ticks (MIT slippage larger than the usual 1 tick).

Trade #238
09:40 Long on [Core] setup.
Holy ****! Price came within 1 tick of my stop (09:47), moved up to within 1 tick of my first target level (09:49), came back down to languish for a while within 1 tick of my stop again (10:00), charged back up to hit my target level (but didn't exceed it to hit my MIT order) (10:12), pulled back down within 1 tick of my entry price (10:20), then powered back up to finally hit my first target (10:24)
10:24 Target 1. +6 ticks.
10:25 Stop for Lot #2 to b/e.
10:34 Stopped at b/e with 1 tick positive slippage. +1 tick.
****! Stopped out to the tick on the breakeven stop before price moved back up to hit T2.

Missed a valid setup
My breakeven stop was the same as the entry for the next valid setup. I wasn't prepared to take the next setup because I was still in the previous one, so I missed a new entry. I could have done something different with the breakeven stop since I was getting a new setup at the same price, but I'm going to continue to keep the setups separate for the time being.

[COS1]
11:20 Invoked [COS1] rule.
11:30 [COS1] rule saved me from a losing [Core] (long) setup.
12:35 The [COS1] setup I've been keeping an eye on would have made for a nice winner here too.

[COS1]
12:58 Invoked [COS1] rule.
13:13 Wow [COS1] saved me from another losing [Core] (short) setup.

Trade #239
13:57 Long on [Core] setup.
13:59 Stopped out. -10 ticks.
Could have invoked [COS1] rule.
I had the option of invoking [COS1] and it turns out that the accompanying setup would have been a very nice winner.

Entry missed by 1 tick.
14:22 My actual entry level was touched, but it wasn't exceeded to hit my MIT order.

After-market wrap-up
  • Objective: Trade with a serious prop shop mentality.
    -
  • Outcome: I had one trade stop me out to the tick and another that stopped me out to the tick on my 2nd lot b/e stop.
    -
    I followed my plan today although I had major issues with my attitude.
    -
  • Observations: I lost it today - my focus on my objective, my confident attitude, everything.
    -
    This morning I got the idea that maybe the militaristic mode I've been using is getting a little old, and that I don't really need it anymore.
    -
    So I thought that maybe it would be a good idea to act like I'm working in a prop shop. I still think it's a decent idea, but not for me and not right now.
    -
    I completely lost the overall mentality of discipline, mental and physical strength, following rules, etc.
    -
    I still followed my rules - I didn't take any trades outside of my rules, and I didn't miss any trades I should have taken - but my attitude was so different I couldn't believe it. And although my trades were all within my rules, I pulled up a longer time-frame chart again which is technically a rule-breaker. And it is partially responsible for my anxiety today.
    -
    I think the bottom line is that I became more focused on my P/L performance because of the "environment" I had decided to act in, than my own performance and attitude.
    -
    One thing that I can guarantee is that I'll be "back on base, rested and ready for duty" tomorrow.
    -
    Something positive that caught my attention this morning was how I was trading as the market was grinding higher. I can recall a time, not so long ago, when I would have been trying to short at the places I'm now often going long. Such a big change.

First Phase 2 sample size complete

I finished my first 20-trade sample size in Phase 2 and I'll be making some changes to my Mission Plan.

It's too early to have any solid numbers to look at, but I know for sure that my [COS1] rule has saved me from numerous losing trades so far. I also know that, even though I've only had a few instances so far, my breakeven stop for lot #2 has cost me a lot more than it has saved me, so I'll be removing that from the plan ASAP.

I'm feeling better now that the trading day is over. I'm also feeling better about being finished with this first sample size and getting the chance to make some changes.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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