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TS' Trading Journal (Since 2014/9/8)
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TS' Trading Journal (Since 2014/9/8)

  #41 (permalink)
Elite Member
Hubei, China
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker/Data: Interactive Broker
Favorite Futures: Stocks
 
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Posts: 272 since Jun 2014
Thanks: 304 given, 165 received

20141002

Pre-Open Object

1. Not Overtrade (Completely lost mind)
2. Sense the body and emotional reaction when I'm in fear with holding winning position and afraid to enter a trade (Yes)
3. Abide by my trading plan (Not at all!!!)

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Summary:

Total 20 trades

17 losses, 2 win, 1 even
4 logical entries, 16 emotional entries
P/L = +67

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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SPY:

Only one trade: emotional entry, Isensed the move down pressure, and entered with impulsion, I was quite sure that the price will move down sharply like yesterday. Failed, stopped out at the high of signal bar.

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QQQ:

Totally disaster, 10 trades from 9:45am to 10:22am, 3.5min per trades, 9 losing trades, 1 at even. I have not marked all the entries and exits on the chart. It just useless. Talk about it later after the FB chart

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FB:

9 trades (7 losing ones and 2 winning ones) from 9:50am to 10:34.
The last two shorts, I increased position so as to cover my lossed and resulted in a little profit.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Some thoughts about today

It is not the first time I do such a mess, actually, I was not feeling fear, angery, frustration (if yes, but very slightly). When I was bearing 18 consecutive small losses, I was not discouraged or had a revengeful feeling. Just a little numb, anaesthetized. Don't know why, ate or drank sth wrong? Too much starbuck coffee to stay during the night?

Actually at the very beginning, I had a thought that the fact that I was not able to keep my winning trade run further is caused somehow by the fact I'm not willing to take any large risk. And today, I'll try to correct that by taking all necessary losses. The idea just flashed a for few seconds and disapeared, but I think it has set my mind to a die hard model....

The 2 winning trades I took at last covered all my losses and left me small profit. But when I took them, I was feeling much secured and more conscious. Even though I still got out too early....I really think that I'm working better with a lossing account (wired???).

Now I realized more clearly about my problem: there are actually 2 of them
  • 1st is about holding the winning position, my old 'friend' who always help me turn down money from market.
  • 2nd is about the feeling of taking a trade, it really teaches me to generously and anonymously donate my money to the market.
Ascribing both problems to FEAR and GREEDY is simple but not very helpful way to deal with them. What's my emotional status with a losing account balance? Normally what I always feel is a bit mix of anger, frustration, shame. I'm not happy about lossing money, and unhappier about knowing my judgement was wrong. When this happens to my first 1 or 2 trades, like the first one on both FB and QQQ today, and same as yesterday, I develop an urgence to prove myself right. I want to tell myself that I'm able to predict the price movement and make money, along with an eagerness to cover losses and making profit.

The very next trade taken by this kind of mind is usually a losing one. Now, as I remembered, I was definitely feeling more pressure to trade than trying to wait a correct moment to enter a trade. When the market simple (under my understanding), I may enter a trade and exit with some profit (scalp or whatsoever). Then I may cover my previous loss, at least partial. Next, greedy mind step to the stage and claim more profit. The best situation is at last, I stay in the deep night before screen, and most of time work for my broker, end with little profit.

If the very next trade fails again, I really get confused. The logical mind tells me that I should stop and clear my mind to start over later. The emotional mind begins to doubt my ability to be a trader and worries about the losses: 'I do NOT want to go to bed with a lossing account'. As I did today and most of days way back to last week/month, I got into an emotional zone, several emotional entries/reverses/exits. Sarcastically, I was perfect at doing what exactly opposite of what I should do (Seems all the same for recreation/beginning traders, for example, many chinese individual trading this way on chineses market, buying high and selling low, even with T+1 no daytrading environment).

After several small losses, the total loss is no longer a small one (paper cut hurt!). The fear of taking any more losing trades conquered the eagerness to continuing put emotional trades. That's usually when I stopped taking trade and focusing on covering losses.

With a relative big loss, I know that I should do it properly, no mess up can be tolerated if I want to sleep with beakeven or little proft. Otherwise, I shall blame myself when later I'm laying on my bed hearing consolation from my wife who must have been waken up by me. NO, that should not be the end of story! Bizarrely, after all these thoughts going on in my mind, I see the market movement more clearly and take the trade more firmly. At last, I always succeed to covering my losses and sleep with little profit.

Ok, that's generally the psychological movement during my trading. Typing it out really helped me to catch main stream of my mind. Recently, nearly a month, after starting this journal, I see a clearly a behavior pattern in my trading. I mainly contributed it to fear, but never take a chance to look with patience like this. Overcoming a general problem, like FEAR in trading, may take really long time. I do have an idea that if there is something wrong (or could be improved) in one mind, the change actually could be quick. It's not some thing physical, like someone broke his leg, in which situation we can't do anything but wait the bone to grow back. I think mind is sth quite different, an opinion can be easily changed in few seconds (look at thoes great salesmen or lobbist, like in the movie 'thank you for smoking'). The specical part of mind is that it can be changed quickly by someone's own willing. The willing may ususally caused by the change of outside environment (like persuasion from other). Once the willing formed, the changing is taking place. I guess, in the other situation, when the willing is not formed, or the willing of opposite mind is strong, people may try hard to escape the problem (stop trading forever and build a lifetime fear), or get completely lost mind ending at lunatic asylum.

Sorry, run too far from trading..., can't help as mind flowing. I should blame starbuck coffee gets me sleepless in the midnight...

Good trade to all !


Last edited by tshunhu; October 2nd, 2014 at 01:53 PM.
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  #42 (permalink)
Market Wizard
Sarasota FL
 
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A lot of great insights here.

Here's something that may or may not help. I have a few absolutely mechanical rules that I do not ever let myself break. For instance, after 3 losses in a row I stop trading for the day. After I have lost a certain amount of money I stop for the day. After a certain number of trades (5, for me), I stop if I am not profitable at that point.

These may not be good ideas for you. I picked them up from other people and adapted them to fit what I thought would work for me. A number of people have some kind of rule based on how many losing trades they have in a row. My rule is that I just stop -- either the market is not my kind of market today, or there is something that is not working for me mentally today, and in either case I want to protect myself from more of the same. But I have also seen people who do something like take a half-hour break after a certain number of losses or a certain loss figure, to give their minds time to recover and to not do something impulsive.

Everyone is different, and you might not benefit from this kind of thing at all. But it has stopped my tendency to just go crazy to try to get back to a profit, so you might want to have something like it. The key, if you do, is to make the rules absolutely mechanical and unbreakable by you.

When trading losses (or just the frenzy of making many trades ) have made you off-balance, your decision-making may not be trustworthy. The idea is to take it out of your hands until your mental balance is back.

If you find this idea worthwhile, I hope it helps you get control over your issues.

Very good journal. Keep it going.

Bob.

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  #43 (permalink)
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20141004


Pre-Open Object

1. Not Overtrade (Tes)
2. Sense the body and emotional reaction when I'm in fear with holding winning position and afraid to enter a trade (Yes)
3. Abide by my trading plan (Partially)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Summary

Total 8 trades

4 winning trades, 2 losing trades, 2 even
3 emotional entries, 5 logical entries
P/L = +69

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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FB:

1st trade: long @77.68, target @77.80 (exited @77.71), stop @77.58, even
Missed the 3rd bar entry, entered on the upside breakout of the 3rd bar. The price nearly touched openning high and pulled back. The next bear bar scared me, I was afraid of a lower high and at least a move back to MA. I got out around my entry. On the opposite, after my exit, the price broke from the upside.

2nd trade: long @78.00, target @78.30, stop @78.85, lost
After missing another 3 consecutive bull bar upside movement, I entered at the upside breakout of the bar before my entry bar. I was thinking that the doji shape bull bar before my entry shows strength from the bull side, if the price break upside, many bears have to be stopped out. The price would have a measured move up based on the range formed by 2 first bar of the day. Unfortunately, the price did break the upside just the next bar of my entry bar, but the price pulled back immediately and stopped me out.

3rd trade: short @77.61, target @77.48 (exited @77.58), stop @77.70, even
Faded the pull back to MA and to bear TL. My entry was too early, should have waited at least 2 bars later, where I exited. Again, just can't hold missed profitable part of the trade.

4th & 5th trade: at that moment, a downside movement was strong. I was not scalping on purpose, but just cannot hold. A scapling profit and fluctuating price really successfully scared me out of a trade EVERY TIME (but no in SIM)

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SPY:

1st trade: long @196.06, target @196.40 (exited @196.16), stop @195.88, win
It's an emotional entry and exit, an ascending MA let me believe that bulls were in charge, shoud have waited till the formation of bull trend line, and enter somewhere near teh TL.

2nd trade: long @196.21, target @196.40, stop @196.33, stopped out
The 1st trade, I exited too early, so I enter again and the price turned back and stopped me out. Quite fair! Another quite clear behavior pattern of mine~

3rd trade: short @196.14, target @195.95 (exited @196.08), stop @196.20, win
Again got out too early with a scalping profit. should exit somewhere near the MA.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

After posting the journal of Thursday, I though a lot about how to change my bahavior pattern and the psychological mechanism behind it. I do not have a clear idea, but I soemhow feel that it cannot be change very quickly and firmly. Like a trending market, the price will move up and down from time to time, and keep going up in a big picture. Cannot expect a sharp movement, which may suggest a strong pullback!

Ok, that's for today. Good weekend everyone!

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  #44 (permalink)
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Posts: 272 since Jun 2014
Thanks: 304 given, 165 received

weekly summary

Weekly Summary (4th)
Monday: +22
Tuesday: +2
Wednesday: +22
Thursday: +67
Friday: +69
Total P/L = +182

Lager profit is not suggesting that I was doing better than last week. The current problems are still untouched. As the journal keeps growing day by day, I do have a better view of my trading behavior pattern. I shall keep monitoring all subtle feelings during my trades and improve.

keep sharp~

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  #45 (permalink)
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20141006 + 20141007

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Chart of Oct 6th 2014. I won't go to the detail as I'm really not in the mood.

Last night I totally completely messed up and made a serie of terrible horrible mistakes. It cost me $2.4k, biggest loss since I trade.

I was not honest about myself and got greedy. I managed to keep a positive balance everyday by increasing my position in several trades. As people use to say, those who play with fire get burned, here is my result. Once the large position trades lost, I wanted to cover, and as predicted, more loss! I knew that I was not capable to trade 1000 shares of any stock, but I abused my luck!

I was impatient about the progress I made, I wanted something quick and direct. This huge loss warns me that I should always be humble and make steady progress. Really disappointed about myself I won't trade for the rest of this week. I'll use this amount of time to finish reading books and do more introspection.

badly wounded, but not dead! I'll do better!

Good trade to everyone!

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  #46 (permalink)
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weekly summary (5th)

Monday: +77
Tuesday: -2.4k
Wednesday: No Trade
Thursday: No Trade
Friday: No Trade
Total: -2.4k

Disasterous Tuesday for me. It is not something accidentally! I always increase trading size to cover previous lost to get daily profitable, got lucky for the last 4 weeks. At last this kind of suicide behavior hit me so hard.

After suffering this loss on Tuesday, I had a great eager to cover it back with even larger trading size. I really wanted to trades some stocks under $10, with 10k or even more shares, just 10-20 cents of movement would cover all my loss!

I didn't do it, I knew it would be the beginning to blow off my account. This kind of revengeful idea/mind is very destructive, not only in trading but also in other aspects of life!

Greedy, cowardly and vindictive, I really do not know who I am.

I said to myself during this week, I will not seek any other method to cover back my loss rather than trading 100 shares in every trade to accumulate my profit.

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  #47 (permalink)
Market Wizard
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tshunhu View Post
I said to myself during this week, I will not seek any other method to cover back my loss rather than trading 100 shares in every trade to accumulate my profit.

Excellent decision.

You never can "get it back." You can only trade again, as well as you can, without reference to the past.

Good job, really.

Bob.

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  #48 (permalink)
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20141013

Pre-Market Object
1. Limit trading size to 100. Failed (200 some trades)
2. Limit number of trade. (Over over trade)

Summary

Still cannot get out of the previous behavior pattern.

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Not useful information on the chart, three word would be more than enough to describe: Fear, anxiety, vindictiveness.

Nobody can help me but myself, right? My wife was sitting beside me at the beginning, she said that I was not willing to change, staying in a mental comfort zone has higher priority than trading according to my plan, although it definately lead to loss.

Long way to go~ Just find it to be a nice song!
Alan Jackson - Long Way To Go - YouTube

Good trade to everyone else but me ~

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  #49 (permalink)
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20141014

Pre-Market Object
1. Limit trading size to 100. DONE
2. Limit number of trade. DONE

Summary

3 trades
2 logic entry, 1 little hurry
2 wins, 1 loss

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FB:

1st trade: short @73.24, target @72.56, stop @73.74, target filled, +68 ticks
Shorted the downside movement after a failed MA touch. My target was the low of yesterday.

2nd trade: short @73.40, target @73.13, stop @73.49 (exited @73.47), loss, -7 ticks
Shoted a doji bar downside move to touch the MA. My price was hitted, but trade has not been triggered... Got out near my stop.

3rd trade: long @73.52, target @73.96, stop @73.13 (exited @73.86), win, +37 ticks
I was a little imprudent when placing this trade. Should have waited till the 4th bar after my entry. I was a little upset about the 2nd trade which is a losing one. My target was 2 ticks below the high of the 2nd bar of today. I though it would be safer, but it has not been broken through when I'm writting the journal (just did).

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
I'm trading 10 shares, the win and loss are finnancially nothing compared to 100 or 1000 shares I used to trade. I just want to trade according to my trading plan, nothing else. I was able to keep calm and stay sharp. Of course, still upset after the 2nd trade, especailly when my target price got hit but my trade has not been triggered. This leads to the early entry of 3rd trade.

I just realized that one difficult part for me is to stay mentally focus and clear during trades. That may be why I can have several trades at the beginning or end of my trading day, but usually mess up those ones in the middle.

That's for today~ Good trade to every one!

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  #50 (permalink)
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20141015


Pre-Market Object
1. Limit num of trades (No, 9 trades, several emotional trades)
2. Limit position size (Yes)

-------------------------------------------
Summary

Total 9 Trades
5 wins, 4 losses
6 Logical entry, 3 emotional trades
-------------------------------------------
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QQQ:

One trade: Short @92.16, target @91.83, stop @92.50 (target filled) +33 ticks
Shorted the touching of MA, at the down side breakout of the bull bar bottom. Targeted at the area of previous low.

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FB:

1st trade: short @72.12, target @71.05, stop @72.78 (stopped out) -67 ticks
The problem is that my target is too far, the touch of today's open should be perfect, I was a little greedy, thought that the price may move to the opening low area. Stop could be the high of entry bar, better~

2nd trade: short @72.67, target @71.75, stop @73.00 (exited @72.97) -30 ticks
Now I realized that I had the idea that today could be a sharp bear day. So my mind was pre setted to expect a big down side movement. I shorted the bear bar after it touched the MA, got out near my original stop.

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SPY:

When I began to trade SPY, I switched back to 100 shares instead of 10, because the commision weighted too much in the P/L. With 100 shares it would be better

The first 2 trades was Logical, be the 3rd one was emotional. When I got out of the 2nd trade, at the very beginning of the entry bar of 3rd trade, I was disappointed to see the price continuung to move up after my exit. So I entered again without hesitation, and stopped out. The 2nd trade, I was doing well by exiting just at the MA area.

Appearantly, my mind was influenced by the incrument of trading size, and working under pressure of lossing account. It is easy to stay focus and detacthed for a few winning trades, but it gets harder with big position size and negative P/L.

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