the vision that, in cultivating our trading, we develop ourselves in ways that ripple throughout our lives.
I’ve often thought of making trading a tool for self improvement and kaizen. But too often I’ve focused on the negative. You need to get better at this shitty habit, or this crappy thing you do wrong in trading all the time. This is the first lesson of many in this book that focuses on working on your strengths instead of your weaknesses.
Set a positive goal, based on strengths, to keep you in touch with the best within you.
Sure you can’t ignore or avoid the things you do wrong, but I seem to have a particular disposition for negative self talk. I think I’m very positive in my speech to others especially those looking to improve. But in dealing with myself all trading day I’m saying stuff like, “Shitty entry dumbass, you should have waited.” Instead of telling myself, “Ok you might have been a little early, but you have good size in this trade, be patient and add to a winner, or cut for a small loss. You were smart and went in small as a feeler.”
Trading goals should reflect trading strengths.
Today my goal is to focus on what I do well, finding solid risk to reward setups, and smart scaling in. Then I’ll work on my biggest flaw, scaling into a winner and holding for bigger rewards.
For some of us, the status quo is not enough. We experience glimpses into the person we’re capable of being; we yearn to be more than we are in life’s mundane moments.
The core idea of this chapter is you have to NEED not just want change in your trading. Trading is a never ending process and if you don’t have a desperate urge to get better you will stay the same or worse falter back. Brett points out a concept I’ve often been suckered into, the idea of “inducing change” I’ve read hundreds if not thousands of self help and trading books that get you started on change but never enforce sustaining it.
The enemy of change is relapse: falling back into old, unproductive ways of thinking and behaving. Without the momentum of emotion, relapse is the norm.
The first half of the chapter covers committing emotionally to change, the second focuses on visualization of change. You need to focus on a goal, not necessarily a profit goal, but a goal of becoming better in some aspect of the process and then visualize that happening. Sure it sounds a little foo foo, but I’ve found when I’m tempted to chase a position if I stop and think about how this trade will go, and how frustrated I will be if I chase and take a loss. It helps me stop and reflect and not enter a poor trade. I move my entry and wait for it to come to me.
It is important not just to have goals, but also to directly experience yourself as capable of reaching those goals. Psychologists call that self-efficacy.
My goal for today and application of this chapter is to redouble my efforts and focus on entry. I will be patient and let the trade come to my target and not give a shit about FOMO.