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Trading With Attitude
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Trading With Attitude

  #41 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Weekend Review

I had two main objectives this week.

First, and primary, was to work on the improvement of my attitude through various exercises and a deliberate choosing of my thoughts.

I’ve created a log to keep track (for now) of the exercises/reading I’m doing in this regard. It always seems to feel, with any exercise I’ve done in the past, whether physical or mental, like I’ve been doing it for far longer than I actually have. This log will give me a clearer idea of how long I’ve actually put effort into it this work, the tools I’m attempting to use, and the results, if any, I’m seeing from it. Here’s the log from this week (starting Sunday when I got serious about doing it):
07/14/2013 Sunday
09:00 Counted my blessings (from Day 1 of The Magic).
10:25 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Felt pretty good.
15:45 Read the entire General Well-Being section from the Getting Into the Vortex Meditation User Guide today.
20:42 Read the entire Financial Well-Being section from the Getting Into the Vortex Meditation User Guide.
20:59 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Lot of wandering thoughts and it makes me feel a little bad because I feel like I’m not getting the most out of it. I also notice that the breathing cadence is different than my usual (shallow) breathing, so I’ll be interested to see when/if I get really comfortable with it. Some yawning too.
Attitude Index for today: 0

07/15/2013 Monday
06:28 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Enormous amount of wandering thoughts. Although I was in cadence, I had very little focus on my breathing. A little bit of yawning too.
07:30 Counted my blessings.
07:49 Vortex General Well-Being. Still breathing with the cadence, but still a lot of wandering thoughts.
In general I’m also feeling “unusual” from the breathing to the point of almost being uncomfortable. It almost feels like it borders on being hyperventilation…but it isn’t. I have absolutely no doubt that it is the result of the way I’ve probably been breathing prior to this, which is shallow and choppy.
13:13 Vortex Physical Well-Being. More tingling in my arms and legs. Still a ton of wandering thoughts.
21:11 Vortex Relationships. A lot of wandering thoughts. Some yawning. More slight tingling in my arms.
Attitude Index for today: 0

07/16/2013 Tuesday
06:38 Vortex General Well-Being. Wandering thoughts, however a few times I had brief pictures come to me of things I’ve done or places I’ve been that I enjoyed and I found myself smiling.
07:10 Counted my blessings. While I’m doing this I’m finding myself taking deeper breaths than I normally do.
07:24 Weird. As I’m doing things this morning I’m almost feeling like I’m “thirsty” for air. I find myself wanting to take deep breaths.
07:30 Count My Blessings.
07:45 Read chapters 1-3 of Physical Well-Being.
11:07 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Lot of wandering and fractions of thoughts. Arms and legs tingling slightly. Had chill bumps run through me several times. Had that funny, tingling sensation right between my eyes like I used to get as a kid when we would put our finger or a pencil really close to that area but not touch it and it would tingle. Just tried it with a pencil – still does it but not as strongly as I felt it during the meditation.
18:54 Vortex Physical Well-Being. Still a ton of wandering thoughts. So much so, that most of the time I’m not even hearing what Esther/Abraham is saying. Had just a times where couple chill bumps ran through me, but I see it is as a result of thinking about something that made me happy or pleased me.
20:38 Read chapters 4-10 of Physical Well-Being.
21:07 Vortex Relationships. I was able to focus on my breathing for a little while at the beginning, but then had a lot of wandering thoughts. I’m realizing though, that these thoughts are benign for the most part – they’re not negative thoughts of fear, worry, irritation, etc., that seem to make up a lot of my thoughts during the day. And then I have an occasional really good feeling thought and it sends chills through me.
Attitude Index for today: 0

07/17/2013 Wednesday
06:45 Vortex General Well-Being. Wandering thoughts, but slightly better/fewer.
07:15 Read chapters 11-16 (end) of Physical Well-Being.
07:30 Count My Blessings.
14:42 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Lot of wandering thoughts.
17:40 Read chapters 1-4 of Relationships.
17:59 Vortex Physical Well-Being. Lot of wandering thoughts.
20:20 Vortex Relationships. It took an extraordinary amount of effort to stay focused on breathing in and breathing out as opposed to the ridiculous quantity of random thoughts that pop into my mind.
Attitude Index for today: 0

07/18/2013 Thursday
06:46 Vortex General Well-Being. Lots of wandering thoughts. Trying to relax but focus on my breathing.
07:04 Read chapters 4-9 of Relationships.
07:32 Count My Blessings.
**10:14 Trading Mind: Living In the Success Zone. I had forgotten how much attitude is talked about in this session.
15:10 Read chapters 9-13 of Relationships.
17:12 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Tons of wandering thoughts.
18:40 Read chapters 14-16 (end) of Relationships.
18:58 Read chapters 1-4 of General Well-Being.
19:15 Vortex Physical Well-Being. A little more relaxing simply because I had slightly less chatter going on in my mind.
19:47 Trading Mind: Trading To Win Mindset. Did pretty well with not having too many wandering thoughts.
20:26 Read chapters 4-16 (end) of General Well-Being. I did this instead of my normal routine of watching TV (usually only an hour) with my wife because she was out with friends. As I sat slowly reading, breathing, and focusing on the meaning of the words, I felt a significant sense of peace and calm.
21:01 Read chapters 1-11 of Financial Well-Being.
21:17 Vortex Relationships. Moments of focus interspersed with a lot of wandering thoughts.
**Started doing the Trading Mind sessions today. Also listened to it as background (using headphones) while I was trading.
Attitude Index for today: 0

07/19/2013 Friday
06:30 Vortex General Well-Being. Lots of wandering thoughts.
07:01 Count My Blessings.
07:23 Read chapters 11-13 of Financial Well-Being.
16:36 Read chapters 14-16 (end) of Financial Well-Being.
17:09 Still really keyed up from the day, so I did the Trading Mind: Living In the Success Zone meditation because it has a pretty good guided relaxation at the beginning.
17:26 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Lots of wandering thoughts, but managed to focus on my breathing briefly a few times.
I’m not sure why but I’ve found myself in a very irritable, foul mood this evening.
20:44 Trading Mind: Trading To Win Mindset. Not too bad.
21:06 Vortex Physical Well-Being. Lots of distracting thoughts.
21:18 Read chapters 1-5 of Physical Well-Being.
Attitude Index for today: -1

Second was to work on learning my chosen method, in my chosen market, using my chosen time frame.

Right now I’m only focused on learning to read the current context of the market (based on the method), recognize a valid opportunity, and execute the trade. I’ll work on the other aspects (stop placement, daily loss limit, trade management, etc.) later.

I said I wasn’t going to keep stats, and I’m not going to keep stats the way I was before, which put a lot of emphasis on profitability. But I am going to compile my Trade Analyzer stats which put more emphasis on consistency and execution of a method. One of the members of the Stage5 chat room (thanks Bo!) created a spreadsheet to work with the TA stats, and I’m posting my current (and slightly modified) chart from that spreadsheet.

You may notice that I’ve modified the data so that it reflects 4-tick wins where the TA grids I post each day only show 3-tick wins. For my sim trading, I use MIT orders 1 tick beyond my profit target to show me without a doubt that I would have been filled with a limit order in a real account, but occasionally I get additional slippage in the sim account, so I’m changing them from 3 ticks to 4 ticks because it better reflects what would occur in a real account. Everything else, like slippage on stops (entry and exit) remains untouched.

I plan to spend the majority of this weekend doing my exercises, reading, working on my trading, and, in general, working on my attitude.


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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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  #42 (permalink)
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AttitudeTrader View Post
I had two main objectives this week.

First, and primary, was to work on the improvement of my attitude through various exercises and a deliberate choosing of my thoughts.

I’ve created a log to keep track (for now) of the exercises/reading I’m doing in this regard. It always seems to feel, with any exercise I’ve done in the past, whether physical or mental, like I’ve been doing it for far longer than I actually have. This log will give me a clearer idea of how long I’ve actually put effort into it this work, the tools I’m attempting to use, and the results, if any, I’m seeing from it. Here’s the log from this week (starting Sunday when I got serious about doing it):
[INDENT][SIZE="1"]07/14/2013 Sunday
09:00 Counted my blessings (from Day 1 of The Magic).
10:25 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Felt pretty good.
15:45 Read the entire General Well-Being section from the Getting Into the Vortex Meditation User Guide today.
20:42 Read the entire Financial Well-Being section from the Getting Into the Vortex Meditation User Guide.
20:59 Vortex Financial Well-Being. Lot of wandering thoughts and it makes me feel a little bad because I feel like I’m not getting the most out of it. I also notice that the breathing cadence is different than my usual (shallow) breathing, so I’ll be interested to see when/if I get really comfortable with it. Some yawning too.
Attitude Index for today: 0

...........

That is an approach I have not seen, but I like it. My focus is going towards "feeling" where things are going.

In some ways, it is similar to the way a skiier will learn to ski more technical runs. They do not "think" their way through, their bodies learn to adjust and compensate to maintain balance, gradually evolving over time as long as the practice stays on the edge of their potential.

Another analogy, I watch surfers paddle out and float on their boards for what seems like a long time for a sport, then try to catch a wave, miss it, paddle back out, sit some more, catch one, maybe it is weak and they bail, or it was great but they fall, paddle back out, wait again... All the time ENJOYING it, as that is what surfing is.

I still struggle to hold a trade past 50-60 ticks, habit kicks in, memory says it will turn soon. While I would love to catch 150 tick moves, I am not allowing myself to exist in that reality. To do that, most often there would be long periods of greater uncertainty, up 60, then back to only up 20 as an example, and becoming numb to that "noise" takes continous practice. My biggest wins occur in overnight trades, where I don't watch. LOL!

Train the mind to accept and allow what you want to experience from trading. That is a great thing to focus on in my opinion. I admire your direction.


Last edited by GaryD; July 20th, 2013 at 09:20 PM. Reason: typos
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  #43 (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

Trading for Monday, July 22


I had to leave for other work around 12:00 and only took one trade. I marked (in gold triangles) other spots where I thought that there might be an opportunity, but that weren’t in line with the method I’m learning.

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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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  #44 (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

I'm super busy, so I'm only going to be posting my Weekend Review to my blog.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend.

-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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  #45 (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

My Facebook Page as an Example

I want to talk about something I went through on Saturday and then Sunday morning that is a good example of my habitual train of thoughts and the way I seem to typically approach things.

Last week I made the decision to finally become active on a Facebook page that I created a couple of years ago. It was a personal page and I wanted to make it a business page, so I started reading and studying about how to do it. However, by the time I started working on it I was already uptight about other things I had been doing during the day.

As a result, getting the page setup quickly became a struggle. I kept attacking it and remained in a state of being frustrated and annoyed that I couldn’t get it to do what I wanted it to do. This was exacerbated by searching the help sections and finding nothing of any assistance.

I worked on it (banged at it) late into the evening, when I decided to hire my daughter (she’s expensive!) to help me with it. We were finally able to get a page set up, but it was in a backward way, the address/username thing wasn’t working (so the url wasn’t what it should be), and I had created multiple pages that were confusing and unnecessary.

When I woke up Sunday morning, I realized how much frustration I was “putting into” this project, so I immediately made the decision to change my attitude about it. I did my morning meditation and my practices from The Magic, (the one for every morning as well as today’s Day 4 practice), and got myself into a pretty good state.

Once I had done that, I started to think about what I wanted regarding my page in a relaxed way and with the attitude that somehow, some way, it would get worked out. I did that for a few minutes before I sat down to my computer. When I did, I had no idea how I was going to deal with the broken username thing or the confusion of multiple pages, but I just started “feeling around” my Facebook page, as well as the help sections, in a very relaxed way, without any real expectation of finding the answer.

Within just a few minutes I found a link that looked like just the thing I needed. It was at the bottom of a page that I had looked at 50 times on Saturday, but didn’t see.

This is a perfect example of something being right in front of me, yet invisible to me. Clicking on the link took me to a different way of accomplishing what I had been trying to do the day before. Although I was unsure whether it would make a difference, I navigated through several pages to get to the one that I hoped would allow me to correct things.

Once I got there, I stopped and took a break to get cleaned up. We were leaving a little later to visit family and I didn't want to get started with something that might make me late getting ready. While I was getting cleaned up, I kept visualizing, in a relaxed way, what I wanted to see happen with my page. It becomes very clear to me that I’m not doing this when I slip back into anxious and irritating thoughts about not being able to resolve the issues I want to resolve. But this is just like when I meditate – I have to keep bringing myself back to the thoughts that I need to be thinking.

When I got back to my computer I was still in a good state of mind. I proceeded to take the next steps in creating the new page, and sure enough it allowed me to create my business page so that the url and username were working correctly.

Then I still had a “dangling” page that I couldn’t seem to access so that I could delete it. But I applied the same state of mind to it, and in a relaxed state of knowing that I would get it worked out eventually, I did some more clicking around. Without really knowing how I did it, I was able to get to the page from another direction and delete it.

I leaned back in my chair stunned that I was able to accomplish all of this with so little effort or frustration.

I’m relating this story because it’s a microcosm of my day trading work. I knew what I wanted to accomplish, but I became frustrated and annoyed very quickly when it wasn’t working the way I wanted it to. I imagined negative scenarios (e.g., people seeing it and knowing that it’s screwed up; never being able to figure out how to make it “right;” having messed it up to the point where the name I want to use can’t ever be used again, etc.) in an automatic way.

I seem to behave in a similar, habitual way when it comes to my trading. It’s not that I’m stupid or unwilling to do the work. But I believe that my habitual state of mind prevents me from seeing the simple things that make the difference between struggle and success.

It only takes the deliberate decision to “think in a different way” to begin making things easier for myself, my efforts more productive, and ultimately, the process more enjoyable. Remembering to make that deliberate decision, rather than getting lost in the habitual negative trains of thought, is the part that I need to work on.

"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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  #46 (permalink)
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It's such an amazing post if you can relate to it. Had my best day today cause I basically just sat on my hands--this has been my biggest problem. I can get in alright but either I get out early or the trade comes back and takes me out. Today I took the right amount of risk, took it off partially to reduce risk and then hit a full 100 ticks on remaining CL trade. There is such a feeling of calm and a sense of accomplishment instead of exhaustion and frustration. Opposite of it was last week when i got in 2 ticks from eventual LoD and got a measly 15 ticks and end of day a frustration trade took that away too and I was just speechless that I had put in so much effort and got in at lows and was still negative for the day.

Edit: Even on this trade I had a fleeting thought of "OMG its going to go the otherway so I should reverse it" I ve done that so many times in the past-you analyse one way and then flip it cause yr mind is playing tricks on you. I thought I should add this -cause thats what made this trade stand out. I dismissed the negative thought without knowing that I dismissed it.

I have enjoyed your journal so much. Trading has changed many things in my life - its not just about money.

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  #47 (permalink)
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AttitudeTrader View Post
This is a perfect example of something being right in front of me, yet invisible to me. Clicking on the link took me to a different way of accomplishing what I had been trying to do the day before. Although I was unsure whether it would make a difference, I navigated through several pages to get to the one that I hoped would allow me to correct things.


Quoting 
Then I still had a “dangling” page that I couldn’t seem to access so that I could delete it. But I applied the same state of mind to it, and in a relaxed state of knowing that I would get it worked out eventually, I did some more clicking around. Without really knowing how I did it, I was able to get to the page from another direction and delete it.

I leaned back in my chair stunned that I was able to accomplish all of this with so little effort or frustration.


Quoting 
It only takes the deliberate decision to “think in a different way” to begin making things easier for myself, my efforts more productive, and ultimately, the process more enjoyable. Remembering to make that deliberate decision, rather than getting lost in the habitual negative trains of thought, is the part that I need to work on.

Intuition is a powerful force, and when harnessed (or set loose), amazing things are possible.

From Schwager's intro to his "Zen and the Art of Trading" chapter in The New Market Wizards:

...I still don't understand your trading method. How could you make these huge sums of money by just watching the screen?

There was no system to it. It was nothing more than, "I think the market is going up, so I'm going to buy." "It's gone up enough, so I'm going to sell." It was completely impulsive. I didn't sit down and formulate any trading plan. I don't know where the intuition comes from, and there are times when it goes away.

How do you recognize when it goes away?

When I'm wrong three times in a row, I call time out. Then I paper trade for a while.

For how long do you paper trade?

Until I think I'm in sync with the market again. Every market has a rhythm, and our job as traders is to get in sync with that rhythm. I'm not really trading when I'm doing those trades. There's trading being done, but I'm not doing it.

What do you mean you're not doing it?

There's buying and selling going on, but it's just going through me. It's like my personality and ego are not there. I don't even get a sense of satisfaction on these trades. It's absolutely that objective. Did you ever read Zen and the Art of Archery?...

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  #48 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Broker/Data: IQFeed
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AttitudeTrader's Avatar
 
Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
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Thanks Guys


garyboy275 View Post
It's such an amazing post if you can relate to it...

...I have enjoyed your journal so much.

I sincerely appreciate it.


garyboy275 View Post
Trading has changed many things in my life - its not just about money.

An understatement!


Robert Carrillo View Post
Intuition is a powerful force, and when harnessed (or set loose), amazing things are possible....

Awesome stuff. Thanks.

-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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