Once in awhile I have traders tell me,
"Barry, just tell me exactly what to do and I'll do it."
Or another version of the same thing is:
"I want to trade just like you do."
And then there's this one:
"I want a trading method that is 100% objective."
It's understandable why people would say these things, but it demonstrates an
ignorance of the realities of trading.
Trading is very individual because it is very emotional. You cannot simply pick up
someone else's trading style for a very simple reason - it may not fit your risk tolerance or your
And then there's the other reason (which we all wrestle with): We simply have a
hard time controlling ourselves when it comes to trading, and the reason for that
is simple: We are all emotional about our money!
When I was a young and foolish trader I used to trade 12 hours per day. I did
a lot of trades and they were all very short term. I learned a lot during that time,
but it was not a successful approach for me.
Though I loved to trade (and still do), and I enjoyed the rush of placing a lot of trades
(something I work very hard to avoid now), I found that I simply was not able to keep my mind in a
peak state when I traded so frequently and for such long periods of time.
That is not true of all people. But that is true of me and it was a very important lesson for me
to learn. I only wish I learned it sooner. I was very slow to recognize this fact, and even after
recognizing it, I was slow to embrace it.
Like a lot of experienced traders, I've become much more conservative and cautious
in my trading over the years. That also means I trade less frequently than I used to.
I separate my accounts into different types for different purposes. I do my long
term investing through Schwab, I do my active trading through Interactive Brokers and I test new
ideas and strategies in my Tradestation account. Keeping those 3 functions in separate accounts
helps to keep them separate in my head.
I've also transitioned from doing so many short-term day trades to
doing less frequent swing trading. The exception to this is that I do my testing on a
very short-term day trading basis simply because it allows me to do more test trades in a shorter
amount of time.
Not only do you need to "know thyself" when it comes to trading, but you may find
that you need to change your trading style at different times in your life.
As an example, after my father died it was very hard for me to trade, especially
day trade. I was going through the grieving process of losing him, and also dealing with the issue
of moving my mother into our home and caring for her.
Clearly, this was not a period of time I should have been trading, and after trying
to trade a bit periodically, I decided to put trading aside for awhile and give myself the
emotional break I needed.
These principles hold true even if you trade an automated, computerized system. One
of the advantages used to sell the idea of automated trading systems is that they take the emotion
out of trading. I have not found this to be true.
When your system goes through a natural draw down period (and it will, because they
all do), the temptation to pull the plug on the system is so great that most people cannot resist
it. As soon as you do that, you are no longer trading the system. You have allowed your emotion to
enter into the equation ... and most everyone I know who has traded a mechanical system has done
Why? Because they are watching the results of that system (with great emotion) and
are just waiting to interfere with it when their emotions can't handle it any more.
Most people underestimate the significance of emotion in trading. It is not a bad
thing. It is simply a fact that you need to acknowledge, then embrace and find a way to deal with
it that is unique to your situation.
Someone once said to me, "It must be nice to be able to trade without emotion."
My answer was: "I wouldn't know!"
I haven't met a single trader who didn't get emotional about their trading. My
conclusion is that it's not something you ever do away with, it's only something you learn to
manage. And even then, the best traders still have relapses! We're only human after all.
This is one of the reasons it's tough to depend on trading to make a consistent
living. Personally I'm so risk averse that I've never been comforable depending on any one
source of income. I've always been a big believer in establishing multiple streams of income and I
did that even when I had the supposed security of a "job" of working for someone else.
On your path to make trading a successful part of your financial life,
and you seek to evolve as a trader, it's critically important that you monitor your own
thoughts and feelings to determine:
The best time frame for your trading.
How long you can maintain peak performance.
How your mind deals with fear and greed.
When you need to take breaks from trading.
How much leverage you're comfortable with.
These are just some issues to get you started thinking about your own unique needs
as a trader.
- Dr. Barry Burns
THE GIFT OF THIS TRADING SECRET
... and Learn How To Trade with Complete
You can get, absolutely free, one of my favorite trading setups: "The
Rubber Band Trade."
You'll get it on day 4 of my free 5-Day Trading Course:
"Make Money by Breaking Every Trading Rule
You Ever Learned!"
Have you ever felt it's uncanny how the market does exactly the opposite of what
it's "supposed to do?" That's not surprising. You probably already know that trading is very
risky and most people don't make money
While that's true, and I can't guarantee your success, I'm happy to share with
you this trade setup that's working for me. And I'll let you "try before you buy!"
Here's what you'll get in my Free 5-Day Video Course:
- Video 1: The Trend is Your Enemy! An up trend is NOT
measured by higher highs and higher lows. In this video you'll see why amateurs often have
their accounts sucked dry by trend trading ... and you'll get the trend indicator that
14 minutes and 33 seconds.
- Video 2: How Pros Trade Against Amateurs with Double Tops and Double
Bottoms ... and how you can trade with the pros. 17 minutes and 20
- Video 3: The Simple Secret To Make Head and Shoulders Patterns
work and when they don't (don't dare trade head-and-shoulders without this!). 17
minutes and 42 seconds.
- Video 4: YOU GET THE RULES FOR MY FAVORITE TRADE SETUP (The
"Rubber Band Trade") 16 minutes and 33 seconds.
- Video 5: My "Five Energies" Trading System. Simple
scorecard method - count how many "energies" align out of 5 to determine the probability of
23 minutes and 22 seconds.
- This course also comes with chart illustrations and ONLINE
INTERACTIVE QUIZZES at the end of each video so you can make sure you master each
TO RECEIVE THE RULES FOR MY FAVORITE SETUP: "THE
RUBBER BAND TRADE," your free subscription to my newsletter and the 5-Day Course
Simply fill out the short, easy form below. You'll instantly receive an
email with the link to your first video lesson TODAY!
I respect your privacy and will not share your information with anyone else.
It will be used to contact you about more free videos and articles, as well as offers on products
for purchase. You may opt out at any time by contacting me at: barry@TopDogTrading.com.
After you request the 5-Day Video
Mini-Course, check out my free Trading Blog.
What's Your Biggest Question
BARRY " form and receive a
prompt personal response!