I can make a big list. A list that would make this post the longer piece on this blog. A list that includes all the web sites that offer shortcuts to make quick money with trading.
But I expect none of them to work. At least not to work as they are sold. Surely there are very few gifted, successful traders that make a fortune quickly and without efforts, but those are black swans. And those success stories are not replicable.
For the rest of us It takes years to learn the tools, understand the nuances of the craft and develop in our mind the dynamics of success.
Let briefly dive into each one of these three concepts.
Learn the tools
Retail traders are exposed to a plethora of data, tools and instruments. Many of those are not worth the effort to be considered. Unless you are wisely guided through a serious educational program, by a mentor or supported by a community of good traders, you are likely going to be exposed to double information than necessary.
Get lost in the multitude of information available out there just adds more work load and distract you for more important things – the one introduced in the next two paragraphs. In my experience, without support it takes one year of studying and following the markets to get a sense of the key dynamics in play on and what is really important to know.
Understand the nuances of the craft
If you were fortunate enough to be surrounded by successful traders in your early career you were probably amazed like me to discover the quantity of work that they perform, their efficacy, efficiency and consistency. It’s thanks to these qualities that they were able to develop their soft skills, those skills that make their methods work with outstanding results but often not replicable by others. Trading is a craft and you need to develop a deep, intimate understanding of it to get ahead of the crowd.
A small anecdote…
Two days ago I was assisting a casual discussion between two traders during the daily wrap up after market close.
Years ago one of the two was the mentor of the other. Now they both are very successful in the markets. They both trade breakout for small swings in equities. They have different styles, personalities and sensibilities. For example, one is more prone to buy weakness and sell strength, the other buy strength and sell strength.
That day it happened that they both had stops triggered in the same stock. What was interesting was that one had a stop order to close a long position that he bought the day before – the other had stop order to open a long position in that stock that day. This is an example that explains that there are things that cannot be simplified as a “buy tip” or “sell tip”. You need to dive deeper into the craft to get money out of it.
Develop the dynamic of success
Soon or later big opportunities show up both in our life and in our trading. Some of us are able to catch them and take advantage of them. Others can see their potential, but cannot act opportunistically. Some others simply cannot see them.
Most traders fall in the second category. Really successful traders fall in the last one.
It all boils down to how we trained ourselves. How our mind and our stomach can bear stressful situation. How strong is our determination and how strong is the faith we have in ourselves and our trading skills.
This is the most difficult part of trading, but it is the part that on which we can train our shelves in under different circumstances of life.
How do you deal with risk in your daily life?
Are you able to stand with your beliefs against the crowd.
Do you have the strength to make difficult decisions and stick with them because you know that that is the right thing to do?