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Papa's Trading Journal
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Papa's Trading Journal

  #501 (permalink)
Elite Member
Wake Forest, NC
 
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It has been a while since I last posted and I need to catch up here. Early in November I had one of those irrational days that I am subject to. All that needs to be said is I suffered a total meltdown. To be honest, I was not in my normal trading environment as I was visiting my daughter. My routine was different and I guess I thought I was doing ok there, but quite honestly, I was fooling only myself. Once I had the "bad" day, I just quit trading cash. I went back and read Big Mike's post to me, and it hit home. My execution is the issue. It is not the entry that is the main source of the issue, but the post entry decision making. This realization made me go back and review the entire year. It was not a pleasant thing to do. Reading some of the entries I made in February and March (some of which seemed like only last week as they were still fresh in my mind) made me realize that I have not made any real progress. I have chased rainbows, looking at different setups, different indicators, different techniques...while all the time not fixing the real issue.....

Any way, here are the things I have done to get on the right path:
-to prevent averaging down, I asked Matt to put me on full margin. That puts a realistic limit on the ability to average down
-I will not add contracts until I have 150% margin per contract. Thus to go to 2 contracts, I would need 3 x the full margin, and my account risk would have to be within my tolerances.
-I do not read anyone else's journal that discusses trading methods. I don't want to plant seeds of discontent or questions in my mind. I have a method that works and I am sticking to it. I do read journals that discuss the mental aspects of trading (Big Mikes Day Trading Method and Advice has been a particular good read and I have enjoyed Cashish's Trading the 6E Old School thread for his ideas on looking for times to trade).
-I stopped trading CL as it really is too volatile for my ability and account size. I have been looking at 6E as the replacement instrument, and I am using simulation trading to get familiar with its movements.
-I am not changing my charts.
-I am working on improving my risk to reward in my trades.
-I am measuring success by working on my self discipline issues rather than money.

I am not planning on trading live until after the new year but only after I am comfortable with my simulation progress.

Have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

My focus is on:
1. Avoid the opening chop.
2. Honor stops
3. Ensure reward > risk on all trades
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  #502 (permalink)
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Posts: 46,240 since Jun 2009
Thanks: 29,352 given, 83,231 received

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

I am sorry for what you are going through. It is not easy. But reading your post, I think you are continuing down the right path. That is what is important, moving forward on the right path.

I would advise trading the micro 6E, M6E as opposed to the regular 6E contract. Just forget about money for a while, and focus on execution. Focus on having a day, a week, a month of following your plan and executing it well. Trading the micro's will help you focus on such things, removing the pressure of money.

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.

Attached Thumbnails
Papa's Trading Journal-bmt-merry-christmas.jpg  
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  #503 (permalink)
Elite Member
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papa15 View Post
It has been a while since I last posted and I need to catch up here. Early in November I had one of those irrational days that I am subject to. All that needs to be said is I suffered a total meltdown. To be honest, I was not in my normal trading environment as I was visiting my daughter. My routine was different and I guess I thought I was doing ok there, but quite honestly, I was fooling only myself. Once I had the "bad" day, I just quit trading cash. I went back and read Big Mike's post to me, and it hit home. My execution is the issue. It is not the entry that is the main source of the issue, but the post entry decision making. This realization made me go back and review the entire year. It was not a pleasant thing to do. Reading some of the entries I made in February and March (some of which seemed like only last week as they were still fresh in my mind) made me realize that I have not made any real progress. I have chased rainbows, looking at different setups, different indicators, different techniques...while all the time not fixing the real issue.....

Any way, here are the things I have done to get on the right path:
-to prevent averaging down, I asked Matt to put me on full margin. That puts a realistic limit on the ability to average down
-I will not add contracts until I have 150% margin per contract. Thus to go to 2 contracts, I would need 3 x the full margin, and my account risk would have to be within my tolerances.
-I do not read anyone else's journal that discusses trading methods. I don't want to plant seeds of discontent or questions in my mind. I have a method that works and I am sticking to it. I do read journals that discuss the mental aspects of trading (Big Mikes Day Trading Method and Advice has been a particular good read and I have enjoyed Cashish's Trading the 6E Old School thread for his ideas on looking for times to trade).
-I stopped trading CL as it really is too volatile for my ability and account size. I have been looking at 6E as the replacement instrument, and I am using simulation trading to get familiar with its movements.
-I am not changing my charts.
-I am working on improving my risk to reward in my trades.
-I am measuring success by working on my self discipline issues rather than money.

I am not planning on trading live until after the new year but only after I am comfortable with my simulation progress.

Have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

I think you are doing the right things. Often times it takes a kick in the head to really wake up and realize the definition of insanity applies to us. At that point, we either change or we quit.

One thing I have stopped doing as well is reading other threads primarily devoted to methods. No sense in complicating things if what you are doing works. The mental side of this game is where the money is. After that, tweaking the method can produce incremental gains but that is not really the important thing here.

Have a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
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  #504 (permalink)
Elite Member
Wake Forest, NC
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Sierra Charts, Investor RT, Ninja Trader
Broker/Data: VanKar
Favorite Futures: NQ
 
papa15's Avatar
 
Posts: 527 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 586 given, 1,244 received

Might Help Some Others

Still on a break from cash trading....waiting for market volume to return after the holidays.

Spent some great quality time with the family...always refreshing and renewing....

Looking over some material I have accumulated over the years and came across this from Norm Hallett on the Mental Fitness of Traders. It is freely available on one of his websites. It has some great advice...advice that I needed to review and apply.

Maybe someone else can benefit from it also.....I expect it has been posted on the forum before, but here it is again.....

My focus is on:
1. Avoid the opening chop.
2. Honor stops
3. Ensure reward > risk on all trades
Attached Thumbnails
Papa's Trading Journal-mental_fitness_for_traders.pdf  
The following 9 users say Thank You to papa15 for this post:
 
  #505 (permalink)
Elite Member
Wake Forest, NC
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Sierra Charts, Investor RT, Ninja Trader
Broker/Data: VanKar
Favorite Futures: NQ
 
papa15's Avatar
 
Posts: 527 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 586 given, 1,244 received

It has been a while since I last posted. I am still pursuing my trading journey. I want to share something that may help others. It is freely available from yourtradingcoach.com, but if you have not visited that site, you would not have seen it. I find it very useful to review this from time to time.....hope it helps someone.

My focus is on:
1. Avoid the opening chop.
2. Honor stops
3. Ensure reward > risk on all trades
Attached Thumbnails
Papa's Trading Journal-importance-exit-strategy.pdf  
The following 5 users say Thank You to papa15 for this post:
 
  #506 (permalink)
Site Administrator
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Platform: My own custom solution
Favorite Futures: E-mini ES S&P 500
 
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Posts: 46,240 since Jun 2009
Thanks: 29,352 given, 83,231 received


papa15 View Post
It has been a while since I last posted. I am still pursuing my trading journey. I want to share something that may help others. It is freely available from yourtradingcoach.com, but if you have not visited that site, you would not have seen it. I find it very useful to review this from time to time.....hope it helps someone.

I hope everything is going OK still. ?

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.

 
  #507 (permalink)
Elite Member
Wake Forest, NC
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Sierra Charts, Investor RT, Ninja Trader
Broker/Data: VanKar
Favorite Futures: NQ
 
papa15's Avatar
 
Posts: 527 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 586 given, 1,244 received


Big Mike View Post
I hope everything is going OK still. ?

Mike

Mike,
Things are going well. I am focusing on trading NQ for its smaller tick value and less volatility. CL was clearly beyond my capabilities.

My method is S&R trading using pivots and the TPO/VAH/VAL lines. I still have to be careful about jumping in before the setup is complete. My execution focus is on getting the stop location correct and exercising patience. I have had a couple of not so good days, but looked diligently to see what went wrong and why.

Have not written about this phase of the journey here since it is such a radical chance from when the journal started....perhaps a new journal?

My focus is on:
1. Avoid the opening chop.
2. Honor stops
3. Ensure reward > risk on all trades
The following 4 users say Thank You to papa15 for this post:
 
  #508 (permalink)
Elite Member
Nashville, Tennessee
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninja / Jigsaw / 9G
Broker/Data: AMP / CQG
Favorite Futures: NQ, YM and ES
 
tderrick's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,589 since Sep 2010
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papa15 View Post
Mike,
Things are going well. I am focusing on trading NQ for its smaller tick value and less volatility. CL was clearly beyond my capabilities.

My method is S&R trading using pivots and the TPO/VAH/VAL lines. I still have to be careful about jumping in before the setup is complete. My execution focus is on getting the stop location correct and exercising patience. I have had a couple of not so good days, but looked diligently to see what went wrong and why.

Have not written about this phase of the journey here since it is such a radical chance from when the journal started....perhaps a new journal?

Have you found the NQ to be fairly smooth as it pertains to trends?


AJ
Nashville, Tennessee


"Life On The Edge of SR"
 
  #509 (permalink)
Elite Member
In the heat
 
Futures Experience: None
Platform: NT
Favorite Futures: Energy
 
PandaWarrior's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,155 since Mar 2010
Thanks: 6,306 given, 13,250 received


papa15 View Post
Mike,
Things are going well. I am focusing on trading NQ for its smaller tick value and less volatility. CL was clearly beyond my capabilities.

My method is S&R trading using pivots and the TPO/VAH/VAL lines. I still have to be careful about jumping in before the setup is complete. My execution focus is on getting the stop location correct and exercising patience. I have had a couple of not so good days, but looked diligently to see what went wrong and why.

Have not written about this phase of the journey here since it is such a radical chance from when the journal started....perhaps a new journal?

I say keep it in this journal, that way we as well as you can see the transition months from now when you re-read your journal.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, Leonardo da Vinci


Most people chose unhappiness over uncertainty, Tim Ferris
 
  #510 (permalink)
Elite Member
Wake Forest, NC
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Sierra Charts, Investor RT, Ninja Trader
Broker/Data: VanKar
Favorite Futures: NQ
 
papa15's Avatar
 
Posts: 527 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 586 given, 1,244 received



tderrick View Post
Have you found the NQ to be fairly smooth as it pertains to trends?

NQ has behaved very well. I calculate a bull and a bear target at the beginning of the day, and it is uncanny how well it has worked. I use a technique I got from pivotboss.com (it is acourse he calls the ADR method....$49.50). I have only tried it on NQ, but in the course the author uses it on YM and CL. Once price is over the back and forth of the opening minutes, it seems to go towards one or the other of the targets. I found this course after reading the book Secrets of a Pivot Boss (if interested, a very good read...buy from the author's website instead of Amazon as it is cheaper). Combining the pivot methods with the bull and bear targets has worked very, very well for me. Able to use larger time frames (5 and 15 minutes) and go for bigger targets.....overall, I feel much better with NQ than CL.......

My focus is on:
1. Avoid the opening chop.
2. Honor stops
3. Ensure reward > risk on all trades

Last edited by papa15; March 9th, 2012 at 09:03 PM. Reason: grammar
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