We are only as good as the stocks that we trade. Traders prepare before the open for what and how they will trade- Game plan. The best traders leave room to observe what is working best, that may just be outside their game plan.
One firm trader in his Daily Report Card, wrote on this topic:
One thing I went back and looked at/thought about….. the stocks that were really working ie CLSD, I should’ve found a way to be more aggressive. Over time, if I can learn to shift that focus in real time and make that realization, there are opportunities to make my day in one stock. I think today especially, it was hard to do with so many names of interest on the open, but a deeper morning preparation can help. Ie, going mentally thru more scenarios.
Dr. Steenbarger, who works with this prop trader, flagged the comments above as significant for the trader. He responded to this trader:
….this is a great observation and a great thing to work on. The key is shifting the focus in real time: quality of preparation helps with that, as you point out, and short breaks from trading where you can scan the universe of candidate stocks/trades can help the process. What I think you’ll find is that, with experience and great prep, those breaks will become shorter and shorter and eventually you’ll be able to shift your focus in real time like that Shark guy you might have heard of…
During the same evening a developing trader wrote on the same need to observe opportunity in real-time, in his review:
I have to be more flexible in terms of understanding there’s nothing that fits my eye prior to the open but at the same time that if a pattern shows up that’s in my Playbook I must put risk to work.
A good best practice is to schedule time during the open and build into habit looking for opportunities that just visit. It is terrific to game plan. But you also want to be open-minded for an opportunity that just arrives.
Leave room in your Game Plan for trades to just appear.
*no relevant positions