From Paper Trading to Live: Time to Turn the Lights On

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I’ve been mostly daytrading for couple of years with not very impressive results. The last few months I decided only to paper trade and the results are pretty good. The problem is that I’ve done this before (trying to transition from successful paper to real trading) with disappointing outcome.

That’s why I’m not that confident that this time it will work, although, this time the results of my paper trading are remarkably steady and consistent. I don’t sense that I am doing anything differently when I trade real money, I am invested emotionally with my paper trades almost as much as with the real ones(I think). Yet there is something that I am missing.

You’ve been around a lot of aspiring traders, do you have any experience or insight on that issue?


You are ready. This time is different. You said it in your question: “although, this time the results of my paper trading are remarkably steady and consistent.”

The past is the past. You were trading different setups probably, at a different time of your life, with less screen time, and with less trading knowledge. One suggestion I would recommend is to develop with as much detail as possible the variable of your trades. And then back-test them. This will give you more confidence in your trading in real-time if you added this step to back-test your setups. We have been doing much more of this on our test. An up-and-down trader on our desk chatted with me outside my office on Friday that his confidence is much higher in certain setups because he back-tested those ideas on our proprietary software. He said, “I know they work and all I have to do is execute.”

I love your approach to restarting your trading career. Paper trading is a very powerful skill builder that most should adopt before trading live.

On Wall Street Warriors, a TV documentary that highlighted our training program,¬†one of the scenes that resonates with many developing traders is me standing before some of our trainees and saying, “You have to believe you will be the next great trader on the Street.” You can be. You have done the work required. You are ready. It’s time to turn the lights on and have some fun.

You can be better tomorrow than you are today!

Mike Bellafiore

One Good Trade

The PlayBook

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