Sunday, 29 December 2013
Getting Ready for 2014 and Beyond
11:44 and because I played the dogs last night I haven't been able to update today's horse notes (should have got up early and done them this morning really).
I suppose that it's only natural at this stage to always have a figure in mind of how much I expect out of the day, and because it's Sunday today I have the figure of £40-£50 in my head, although there are five meetings today. This is a prime example that the lessons learnt of trading five years in the exchange, i.e. the fact that Sunday's would usually produce poorer results because of the general lack of racing, have become embedded in my subconcious. Anyway, as per yesterday I'll put that stupid thought in the bin and concentrate on trading calmly and steadily.
How strange ... my grandkids have Pokemon on the TV as I was typing the above and all of a sudden the top dude Pokemon says 'You can't learn unless you take a few risks' .... how apt!
State of mind: cautiously optimistic.
+£70.65. Pleased with another day of steady trading, mostly in the win market.
+£48.64. I had loads to do today so didn't really get involved that much and to be honest wasn't really bothered. We're going away to the coast for a couple of days and to be honest I wish it was for a couple of years as every now and then my entire family seeem to want to grind me down.
So what constitutes the traits of a successful trader? I've started to go through the above videos again and there's just so much great information available, so it's well worth giving them a view at least once.
The start of my random scribblings that are mostly pertinent to in-running trading:
Consistent/robotic trading - having the ability to execute your trades and not worry if the market moves against you and you have to take a loss, as many trades will go against you over the course of time. Remember that when you enter the market you are now relying on others to move the price in your favour.
Accepting losses - even the greatest traders don't have a 100% strike rate. Accept that losses will occur and that they are a natural part of trading.
Using the fear of losing to your advantage - if most traders always fall prey to the fear of losing, and therefore lose their objectivity when a trade moves against them, then they will clamour to exit their position with the smallest loss possible. This is either thorugh fear of losing or trading well and cutting losses quickly. I really do believe that this is the cause of big price moves AGAINST the percieved chance of the horse. I have only spent a relatively short time trading in the win market but I have seen this happen too many times to be anything other than the herd mentality. Therefore by staying level-headed and not joining in with the panic then these fear based moves can present great opportunities.
Realise that the goal isn't to win every trade - the goal is to win over a series of trades.
Trusting your judgement - if the price moves against you for no apparent reason then you should add to your position. All that has happened is that someone has taken an opposite view, for whatever reason, and the sheep have followed. For instance, if you have backed at 5.0 and for no apparent reason the price has moved to 8.0 then add to your position, it makes sense.
Staying calm and relaxed - this is especially true for me during NH races. Even the shortest race will usually take four minutes to complete, so there is usually time to calmly evaluate your position before making a decision as to when to add to or exit your trade. All too often I find myself on red-alert once they go in-running and this is just not neccessary.
Dealing with the self-limiting internal dialogue - the above example is a typical scenario where in the cold light of day you would add to your position, it makes sense. However, if the market unexpectedly moves against you, especially in a big way, for no reason that you can see, then your self-limiting beliefs kick-in and you get:
'oh fuck I called that one wrong' instead of 'hey my opinion hasn't changed and now I can get an even better price ... happy days'
'someone knows more than me' instead of 'I'm going to trust my own judgement here because I still think that I am right and I believe that the herd mentaility has just presented me with a great opportunity'
'I'm going to look/feel like a right mug as I give away more money' instead of 'even if this trade doesn't go my way I am still making good and consistent money and I shouldn't feel like a mug. Plus if it goes right then I'm going to look/feel qute happy that I trusted my own judgement and be more inclined to grasp these opportunities in the future instead of second guessing or doubting my judgement'
'oh fuck I'm risking £80 instead of £40' instead of 'I don't mind risking another £40 as I think that this is a great opportunity'
Now as long as you are only adding a suitable amount to your initial position then there is no need to worry. Consider it as making two trades in one go, or bringing your next trade forward by one race. I have the strong feeling that this is where big opportunities occur, by taking advantage of these moves that are predominately caused by the herd mentaility, I am sure of it!
So where does this all get me? Well when I visualise my idea of a successful trader then I see someone sitting at a desk relaxed, trading in an authoratative yet relaxed manner. Someone who is focussed and diligent and totally in control of what he/she is doing. Someone you could watch trading and think 'wow, I wish that I could trade like that'. Obviously if it was a woman she'd be pretty, have long legs and a great pair ot tits!
There were 1 or 2 guys like this in the exchange (no not long legs and big tits). They would win great amounts on a regular basis but you could never tell on any given day whether they had just won £10k or lost 10k. Their demeanour was always the same.
So now that's the mental image I have of myself when I sit down to trade. I want to trade so well that if anyone was looking over my shoulder they would say 'wow, this guy is good and makes it seem so easy'.
Anyway here's wishing everyone a fantastic New Year. I'm off to the coast too get pissed, watch the fireworks over the marina and freeze my bollox off!
Onwards and upwards ....