Welcome back to our new series 30 trading habits in 30 days. If you have missed the prior habits they are archived here.
Today we share habit #8- Trade2Learn.
Don’t just journal, keep your trading journal open while you are trading. How does this help your trading?
1) It relieves pressure. Instead of fixating on whether a trade will work or not, be obsessed with what you can learn from the trade. Instead of banging the desk after a losing trade, take notes of why the trade failed. Keeping your journal open to take notes, transfers the pressure for the trade to succeed to what notes you can record to learn.
2) Notes in real-time are better than notes after the close. You remember better right after a trade as opposed to after the close. Often a small detail can be a key factor in trade success or not. Taking notes right after the trade and in the middle-of-the-trade helps you spot and record these key catalysts.
3) Keeps you focused on what is most important. One trade. One successful trade. One loss. None of these will make or break your trading career. What will is a hyper-focus on your PnL.
An anecdote from the trading desk
I just had a great chat with a High Performing Trader, who I noticed was despondent after a losing day last week. He even skipped out on a fun firm outing he was so down after one trading session. And this from a trader making north of 50k-a-month. And this from a trader who in two years has elevated his trading game from 10k-a-month to north of 50k-a-month. He is one of the traders who is #winning.
I reminded him of his phenomenal progress. We discussed him not judging a day or himself based on his PnL. We highlighted specific strategies where he could improve and make more. The focus should be on the progress he can make from these elevated levels of performance so in another two years his numbers exceed six figures a month.
One way to do this? Keep his journal open and take notes on the strategies he is adding/improving/trading bigger.
- How can he can bigger in $VXX?
- What stop does he need to trade $SPY successfully?
- How can he momentum trade $CTRV on the long side?
- What was the catalyst for the $FOLD fade on the open?
This is an example from the prop desk of a real professional trader working to make more. These are the techniques used for them to progress. Said another way, Trade2Learn.
*no relevant positions