It’s Okay to Get Upset While You Are Trading

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So Dr. Menaker indicates if we can become self aware of our emotions we are much more likely to be able to control our actions/behavior and therefore minimize our mistakes. That made perfect sense but I wondered if a consistently profitable trader goes through the same emotions that the “less than” CPT goes through? Aren’t you and Steve simply much more confident than less successful traders?


Anyway, this morning I got to see Steve’s post where he indicated he was clearly frustrated yesterday and  his audio yesterday certainly reflected that. Yes, CPT at times have the same range of emotions that the rest of us do (just not as often I imagine).

Then your response in the “Financial media complex is hurting my trading” post really hit home. How the hell do I know? I loved it. I mean, I am supposed to believe 1., anything can happen, and 2., that I do NOT need to know where a market is going in order to make money. So why do I spend so much energy “wanting” to know where it’s going?  (Maybe I don’t actually believe those two statements?)

Your response, to forget it and simply be patient and WAIT for your setups is the obvious answer. I mean, why would I want to do anything else? Sure, I suppose there’s a part of me that like’s to be right but what’s that got to do with being a CPT? Not a thing.

You said “Do not put so much pressure on yourself to predict market and stock moves. This will make your trading life much easier, less stressful, and much more profitable.”

Good stuff at SMB.

Steve and I both get upset while we are trading. Steve gets upset considerably less than me. We get upset less than most. We do teach our guys to use visualizations techniques to help control their emotions in real time. This helps trader outbursts visit less often, last shorter and burn less hot. But we absolutely will get angry/frustrated during some days, which you can hear on SMB Real Time. We are not Buddhist monks.

Also, I particularly like Dr. Menaker’s work on using your emotions as trading information. When I get pissed about slippage in a stock I use that trading information to move away from the stock. When I am too comfortable in my positions, I know I need to focus on being bigger. When I sense I am not in the right mindset before the open, I play partner for the day and lock myself in my office.

I try as best I can to not place extra pressure on myself. I stick with my trading strategies that make the most sense to me. I surround myself with traders who share trading setups. Our proprietary trading technology is the best on the Street in the prop space. I do not expect myself to be able to predict the moves of stocks. My job is to recognize good risk/reward opportunities and manage my risk. This is the job of the majority of pro traders. Predictions are for the unreasonably uber-confident on TV. There is very little I am certain about while I am trading other than I will take losses in some positions everyday I trade. And if I focus I will find excellent R/R opportunities.

What gets you upset while you are trading? What do you do with these emotions?

Related blog posts:
Getting Flustered
Overcoming Your Psychological Issues as a Trader

You can be better tomorrow than you are today!

Mike Bellafiore

One Good Trade
The PlayBook

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