symptoms, sharp tools, evolving bathwater and the dark side
The plan is of course already morphing, thereby making me officially incorrigible. However, if my weakness is random change, my strength is ruthless change. From 12 charts I now have only 6 and I *love* them, no redundancy, maximum clarity and information, highly visible. Most of yesterday was medical appointments and trade system re-engineering.
It felt good ditching the US market feeds from my current active workspace, they will no longer come in at all on eSignal from the end of this month cycle date. I will miss drawing the forward gears fibs on the beloved ES, but it only ever served as a distraction that muddied my focus - my problem, not it's.
It was wrong to chuck the Sprints - the betting shop is fine if you have good odds and a solid understanding of the underlying ground - they are sharp tools if used properly, of course dangerous like C/C++ if used stupidly. SO, no 'baby out with the bathwater' just yet - I need to address the underlying causes of my trend following failures and not the symptoms, and stop looking for excuses outside of myself.
My win rate with them is already fine - BUT I WILL WAIT FOR PULLBACKS ON DIVERGENCE(S) AT KEY AREAS before entering.
In the main account I had a couple of fill problems caused by trying to enter in a high volatility spike, thereby breaking one of my own rules anyway - ENTER IN LOW VOLATILITY, EXIT IN HIGH. However, it reminded me that having two accounts is an advantage, not a problem - so let's not use that as an excuse either.
Yesterday's trading was only a couple of hours and mixed, main account I had a few nibbles and one good short after the typical Tuesday corrective clamber up to the previous day's high, finished off -16T in the end. Sprints I took just 5 for 4W, 1L for +44T.
Evolution. Always. I have turned to the dark side - added a profile and a simple VWAP. Nothing is sacred anymore.
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Got jolted out of a heavy dream sleep, spent the rest of the morning session with a headache - that should have been a clue to maybe just go for a walk instead of trading. I ended with 11 Sprint trades going down 4W, 7L for -76T, a slapdash ass-kicking that has to be the finger-burning that keeps me off the slot machines for the rest of the year.
It's not the magnitude of a single-day loss that matters, it's the manner, and I know that any attempt to scale up position sizes on these crack-fueled instruments is going to bury me one day. If any of you that read this journal ever see me mention the word 'Sprint' again please send me a private message and tell me not to be a complete prat in whatever language you fancy. I have deleted all the related Ninja and trade platform layouts and want the shackles to work, permanently.
(Shouldn't be trading OR-bound Dax on Thursday mornings either, yeah I know.)
I will keep trying to make it a proper job.
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denial, rationalisations, oscillations, permission to trade, then do it
Denial - that my trading behaviour has been anything other than gambling - it has, on too many occasions. Without consistency in the workshop the casino will burn down.
Rationalisations - post #301 contained several, I need to let things go and move ahead properly. The consequences were immediately felt the following day.
Oscillations - in a period of psychological turmoil and change this is natural, the new road is not going to be illuminated by a single blinding light, more a series of shadowy glimpses and intuitions that eventually lead to one or more right turns. Lots of hard graft and dead ends along the way.
Permission to trade - this is the single most important concept I have lost sight of in recent weeks. I ALWAYS have to know that it is sensible to trade and, if so, which way to be looking before I even consider a setup or look for an entry. Market conditions and trend definition first, setups and entries second - schoolboy errors otherwise.
Then do it - without hesitation, too many times I watch the best setups pass by and then take a lousy one instead, so let's stop doing that, continuing to focus on the psychology by means of sticking to a consistent methodology.
With those key points worked out I have also analysed my system and trading from last week and simplified it yet again. At no point did the profiles or VWAP provide any extra information that I couldn't already see, in fact to a large degree they just obscured things. The dark side has now been exorcised and I am a trader of market conditions, patterns and measured moves once more.
No excuses to London from here:
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So, still just need to sort out the wet-fat link between eyes and fingers then.
Just checked it and our area has been upgraded again, says I can now get 76Mb download for £26/mo, great but overkill for what I currently do with it, I'm just happy that it's been rock solid for a year.
Last edited by ratfink; January 26th, 2014 at 05:40 PM.
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Today's best decision - don't trade, as I had no sleep at all last night. Head full of ideas.
Today's worst decision - don't trade, as I slept through @GFIs1's gem of a trade. Bugger. Fib move hit massive target to tick as well. Just a day, thousands more, if I'm fortunate. I think fortune is different to luck, but that must be a long story somewhere.
Yesterday - took +52T out of chop. Happy boy. Saw some beautiful and ugly things, couldn't sleep as a result.
Progress - I have completed the removal of US markets from my system and my life, I have no more worries about late hours trading, no more faffing with mixed session holidays, and a better planned balance of trading hours and life. This is important for me. I am now only interested in Dax and Euro STOXX.
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Done for the early session, getting used to the new setup, only two trades for +32T.
Dax and Fesx playing cat and mouse all morning, I'm thinking they need to get squeezed North away from these areas pretty soon, otherwise the remaining December gaps beckon. (Both have just started lifting as I post this.)