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Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.
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Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.

  #51 (permalink)
Trading for Fun
BC, Canada
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: TWS, QuoteTracker
Favorite Futures: CL, ES
 
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Posts: 81 since Feb 2011
Thanks: 116 given, 126 received


bwasi View Post
1. Focus on execution process, not money..

2. Could you hide the Profit/Loss (Money) & the Histogram in your dom ? It is a bit eery


You're right, looking at the P/L in the DOM does make it hard to focus on the process instead of the money, however, I like having it there to remind me of the reality of losses. It keeps my losses smaller. If I am already in the red, it is easy to find reasons (excuses) on the chart to give price "more room."

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  #52 (permalink)
Trading for Fun
BC, Canada
 
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Journal entry for Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Not a very good trading day. Very slow reflexes and the brain was fuzzy too. Four trades total, all in CL even though I did watch the ES.

The only thing I was happy about was getting up on time this morning.

However, getting to the computer on time is not very useful if I am super sleepy -need to start going to bed earlier again. Have been pushing bed time to later and later.


By 1:25pm I was regretting not calling it a day at 11:30AM today since nothing was happening, but then I got a valid signal at 1:30pm and volume spiked up. Just when I was starting to think that maybe I should only trade the open outcry hours...


Mistakes to avoid:
Avoid temptations to eat close to your bed time!

Last night, I decided to give in to fresh food in the kitchen an hour before my designated bed time and ended up having to stay up for an extra two hours past the time I thought I would go to sleep at. The digestion period was passed by watching The Bourne Identity. Damm TV cable -I knew I was better off without it.

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Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-tue-mar-29-2011.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-tue-mar-29-2011-2.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-tue-mar-29-2011-3.png  
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  #53 (permalink)
The fun is in the numbers
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Hi Trigger,

looking at the screensnaps of your trades it looks like all the 4 trades were winners
+.30,+.10,+.11,+.15=+0.56 = $560 - good stuff!

Keep your mind in the future, in the now.
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  #54 (permalink)
Trading for Fun
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aquarian1 View Post
Hi Trigger,

looking at the screensnaps of your trades it looks like all the 4 trades were winners
+.30,+.10,+.11,+.15=+0.56 = $560 - good stuff!


Thanks aquarian,

The 3rd trade was a short trade, so it was actually a 6 tick loss, and although that is negligible, had I waited just two more seconds it could have been avoided. I did not exit based on any rules or signals, I was just plain scared out. Oh well, the other trades did more than make up for it.

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  #55 (permalink)
Trading for Fun
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Journal entry for Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What a slow day for CL.


Only two trades today.


Mistakes to avoid:

Do not hold out for an extra 3 ticks or so. Once price got to 103.45, I thought "oh, let's wait till it hits 103.42 exactly, so that I could bag a one point profit." Then I watched in horror as price turned on its heel and headed in the opposite direction. It took me a while to snap out of hoping and praying that it turns back around. I lost out on an extra 30 ticks because I was too greedy.

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  #56 (permalink)
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Journal entry for Thursday, March 31, 2011

Could not fall asleep yesterday till about an hour before I needed to get up.

Should have just stayed in bed today, would have had the exact same result minus the stress. I made exactly 0 today, yet I made 6 trades.

Can't believe I broke-even exactly to the penny, excluding the commissions. Did not trade well today at all. Just as I was about to congratulate myself how well I have been doing recently.

Wish I was at the computer at least 10 minutes earlier for the first trade. Oh, how I envy morning people when it comes to this profession.


First trade wasn't perfect, hesitated on both the entry and the exit, but got out with a 45 tick profit, which for me is really good, since I have had a tendency to scalp for only 10 ticks out of fear.

Second trade was a disaster. I missed the ideal entry and yet I continued to chase, finally entering at a point where I should have already been thinking of exiting. The trade didn't go anywhere for about 10 minutes, so since I had time by then to realize I entered completely wrong, I should have exited at that point. Instead I realized a 18 tick loss.

Made the same mistake on the third trade: entered too late, in the middle of the move.

The fourth trade would not have taken place (or so I would hope) had I looked at the 5 minute chart; it was completely against the trend in the 5 min. and the 15 minute charts.




Mistakes to avoid:
  • Do not chase and jump into trades for which you've missed the entry signal. If after a pullback the trend resumes, you will get another opportunity to enter then.
  • Do not wait till your highest stop loss is hit if you already know before hand that you were wrong to be in that trade in the first place ; limit your losses and exit the trade as soon as possible.
  • Focusing on only the 1 minute chart. There is a reason why there is also a 5 and 15 minute chart of CL on my screen -reference both of them before making any trading decisions.
P/L: +45, -18, -5, -15, -11, +4 ticks all in CL

Attached Thumbnails
Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-thur-mar-31-2011.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-thur-mar-31-2011-2.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-thur-mar-31-2011-3.png  
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  #57 (permalink)
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Reflection

I am very glad that I started this journal. I did not follow the guidelines I set out in the first post and I changed the format several times. There were days where I did not see any value in what I was posting, (and I am sure you guys still don't, haha) but then towards the end, once I started posting my 1 minute charts, I realized the usefulness of journaling.

The document of sample setup pictures with notes I wanted to create, but was procrastinating on because the task of copying, pasting and analyzing past charts seemed so daunting, no longer needs any work; this journal has become that document.

Had it not been for the contest, I am certain I would have missed several days of posting, especially during the first two weeks, which would have maybe even led to me abandoning this journal completely. Mike's contest helped me stick to my discipline of writing about my trading every day, which turned out to be very useful to me.

No, I haven't overcome my fear of pulling the trigger on trades, but I have become more confident in my trading strategy, which I believe is a good first step. It is starting to sink in that I can be consistently profitable even without a perfect strategy/system. Although it is an extremely slow process, I believe I am on the right track.

I still have a lot to work on. I am hereby committing to posting for another month at the very minimum. I will re-evaluate at the end of April again. As always, your tips, comments and suggestions are appreciated.


Main objectives for April:

Focus on the big picture instead of scalping for pennies (as I sometimes do) by minding the 5 minute chart.

Take note of ideal stop loss placements on charts.

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  #58 (permalink)
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Month-end Summary

This is a summary of all the lessons from the Month of March.

-----------------Entries-----------------

Absolutely no tinkering with charts during trading hours. Don't engage in anything during trading hours that would prevent you from acting on a trading signal.

Act whenever a valid signal comes in. Don't be overprotective of realized
profits or fearful of losses -they are a necessary cost of business.

Do not chase and jump into trades for which you've missed the entry signal.
If after a pullback the trend resumes, you will get another opportunity to
enter then.

Don't assume there will be another opportunity to enter the trade later.
Enter as soon as a signal develops.

When there is sufficient volume, there is no need to wait for the next bar
to confirm the entry signal.

Do not let Volume fool you; if there is a high spike when an entry signal
forms and then volume goes back down on the next candle, it does not
necessarily mean that the trade signal is invalidated.

Don't forget to also reference the 15 and 5 minute chart when considering
acting on trading signals on the 1 minute chart.

If I am entering a trade, and I should have already been in that trade based
on the 5 minute chart, do not wait for the green signal and the most ideal
setup. Enter as soon as favorable circumstances show up. (As in: green EMA,
pink signal & yellow is good enough)

Decide on a stop loss level before entering the trade.

Do not set stop losses that are too tight. If possible, set a pattern
appropriate one instead of a dollar stop loss.

As long as the signal is valid and the charts continue to support an entry,
don't lower existing profit targets based on minor fluctuations.


-----------------Exits--------------

Avoid temptation to exit trades before any form of exit signal is received
especially if you are in the green.

Don't be greedy. If price comes close to your profit target then exit -do
not hold out for an extra 3 ticks or so.

Do not wait till your highest stop loss is hit if you already know before
hand that you were wrong to be in that trade in the first place ; limit your
losses and exit the trade as soon as possible.

The end of the yellow line on the bottom of the chart is often a good time
to exit a trade.

Don't forget to cancel your stops once you get out of the trade!


-----------------Sleeping---------------------

A good sleeping schedule is part of your trading discipline.

Avoid temptations to eat close to your bed time!

If you did not sleep well (or at all) the night before, practice your
trading skills by using your SIM account.

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  #59 (permalink)
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Journal entry for Friday, April 1, 2011

Did a lot of hesitating today and either missed trades completely or entered super late. A very positive day, financially, but a bad day execution-wise.


Lessons learned today:
  • If, being a night-owl, you make the effort to get up in the early morning to trade, do yourself a favor and have the computer up and running by 6AM at the very latest. Stop being late for work. Wasn't ready to trade today till 6:08 am Pacific time and felt really rushed with my first trade -almost didn't take it and it ended up giving me 50 ticks.
  • Hesitating, entering late or refusing to enter at all is costing me a lot of money. Had I entered when I should have just before 7 am, around 106.8 I could have held until the time I exited the second trade (at 107.75) and made almost a whole point instead of the 35 ticks I did make. This is not about greed. Executing signals properly and on time would allow me to have winners that would way more than make up for any losses -and I believe this would further ease my fear of pulling the trigger promptly.
Took a break between 9 (Noon Eastern) and 10:20AM away from the computer.

P/L: +50, +35, +38 ticks in CL

Attached Thumbnails
Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-1-april-friday-2011.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-1-april-friday-2011-2.png  

Last edited by TriggerShy; April 2nd, 2011 at 03:32 AM. Reason: Missing attachments
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  #60 (permalink)
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Journal entry for Monday, April 4th 2011


Was up and ready to trade the CL since 3AM this morning (6AM Eastern) after not getting any sleep at all. Wish I just stayed in bed today. Did not do bad profit wise at all, but it was very stressful considering how choppy the price action was. Six trades today.


Lessons learned today:

Don't just wait for a big, easily identifiable, trend move. Take a step back and analyze price action. Identify the pattern for the day. For some reason, I kept waiting for something else to happen instead of taking the day for what it was.

During a sideway market, don't wait for exit signals, and instead set lower profit targets based on price patterns.



P/L: +4, -8, +7, +9, +6, +10

Attached Thumbnails
Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-4-april-mon-2011.png   Refining my STRATEGY, Eliminating FEAR and Instilling DISCIPLINE.-4-april-mon-2011-2.png  
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