Give Yourself Time

BellaMike Bellafiore's (Bella's) Blogs3 Comments

Got back from a run. Yeah, this Georgia Tech campus is very nice. Had a mocha frappachino from Starbucks (I do not even know what that is and I unordered the size three times) to help with my 4am wake up call. Walked the room for my presentation. I like to get a feel for the room and see myself presenting.

Very easy trip from NYC to Atlanta. Loving the gogo wireless that makes air travel almost enjoyable. That guy who leaned back two inches too far two seconds too long, mimicking the judgement of juicy Barry Bonds, was today just slight inconvenience. iPad on seat tray a little closer and back to work. But seriously, dude. Fired off comments about trader’s plays for their playbooks that they shared with me. With a David Grey a-blaring to drown out the BA engines I got to thinking about trader success.

Time. We do not blog about this much in the trading community. Time. The more time you can give yourself to become a successful trader exponentially increases your chances of success. Some trading author tweeted that today. There are a lot of bitter ex-traders out there. Guys who think they should have made it and I agree. But just for a different reason. Any doubts just check a trading forum, home to the disgruntled trader. By the way, do any of those posters consider the act of just going to a forum to complain says more about their inability to become a successful trader than any poor trade they would make. And if for some reason you do not succeed do you have to try and bring down everyone else with you?

There is so much talk about the failure rate of traders. You never hear about the failure rate of baseball players by the way. How many little league ballers become professional players? Does that mean they all failed? I never played past college. Who knew I was such a failure. There is talk about limited buying power, the lousy training program, the nonexistent training program, the mentors, the system taught (btw almost no one teaches a system but too many think one is taught), the trading platform, the trading tools, HFTs, etc. One of the things holding back intraday traders is almost never discussed (complained about?).

Time. Time. Time. It’s not just that trading is difficult. It’s that the intraday traders must get good very fast. Eight months is a median time period for most. The time when the money runs dry, the firm isn’t prepared to commit, and the doubts manifest. Time. That learning curve, excuse my language, is a $itch.

What if every intraday trader was given three years to succeed? Those HFTs wouldn’t be so menacing. That Pullback Trade not so perplexing. That Momentum Trade much slower. Sizing something you have internalized. Are too many traders failing or really just running out of time? What would be said about the firms then? Even the ones that really are bad.  What would be said about that buying power, mentors, training program, bagel Fridays? My hunch is that many more would make it and many more nice things would be said about the trading world.

So if you are going to follow your passion-trading. Good for you! What else are we supposed to do with our time than challenge ourselves? There are things you can do to speed up your learning curve (purposeful practice). Also, there are things you should do before you ever enter the arena to give yourself as much time as you can to become a successful trader. That might make all the difference.

You can be better tomorrow than you are today!

Mike Bellafiore

One Good Trade
The PlayBook

no relevant positions

3 Comments on “Give Yourself Time”

  1. Absolutely right that time and therefoe capitalisation and risk mgmt. and persistency are crucial for succeeding in trading. But this does not mean that we would see more consistant profitable traders. At least the ratio winners/losers might be the same because trading is not only a zero sum game, it is a negative sum game (cause everyone has costs – and I mean not only commish).


  2. Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much can be done if we are always doing.
    Thomas Jefferson

    It’s not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is, what are we busy about?
    Henry David Thoreau

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