- Work Hard!
Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do. Pele
Nothing in life is for free. As with all skills, the more you work at trading, the better you get at it. There is NOT a short-cut to being a successful and profitable trader. Skills must be learnt (knowledge gainee), then with practise and experience comes wisdom (applied knowledge). Applying learnt skills, preferably with supervision (see point ), and only start trading with real money once you’re really ready.
- Education, Education, Education
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. Nelson Mandela
Is it possible to be profitable from trading without really knowing what you are doing? Yes, for the very few who are very lucky. But NOT for a sustained time frame. It is tempting to take short cuts, rather than dedicating time and effort to achieve knowledge through a real education. A successful trader commits time and energy, to learn the skills required and knows the significance of learning.
- Be Patient
Genius is eternal patience. Michelangelo
By not taking a trade, you are still making a decision. Don’t just trade because you feel you should be trading. Be patient, wait for the right opportunities. Successful traders are patient and understand that true success takes time.
- It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once
Do not expect to be winning and profitable all the time. That is not realistic, for anyone, in any circumstance. As with being patience in the short-term, remember that the trading life is a lifestyle choice, not just a monetary choice. The rewards are on many levels, and will become apparent over the long run.
- Be Confident
Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence. Helen Keller
Trust yourself, your skills and your ability. Once you have learnt about trading, with hard work, you should not be afraid of taking risk, in a controlled way. Successful trades should be used to reinforce your self-belief. Learn from the unsuccessful trades.
- Be Disciplined, Be Organized
Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment. Jim Rohn
Work out a set of trading rules, a strategy that suits your personality, that enables you to fit your trading around your life commitments. Then stick to them!
- Get A Role Model
My dad was my best friend and greatest role model. He was an amazing dad, coach, mentor, soldier, husband and friend. Tiger Woods
Trading can be a lonely place, so it is really useful to get feedback on your trading as you begin to apply your new-found knowledge and skills. If you can find a role model or mentor whose advice you trust it would be priceless. Find out their trading process, how they achieved what they have.
- Be Responsible and Honesty
Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom. Thomas Jefferson
Not taking responsibility for losses, blaming bad luck, brokers or difficult markets, is a dangerous road to walk down for a trader. ALL traders lose money from time to time – but that doesn’t make them bad traders. A good trader is honest with themselfs about trading decisions. Failure to accept responsibility for a bad trade leaves risk of making that same mistake again and again.
- Learn From Losing Trades
Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations. Steve Jobs
Making mistakes is natural and normal, but the successful trader will learn from their mistakes and avoid repeating them. With a bad trade, you’ve paid out on the loss, so ensure to get some value from the loss. Rather than ignoring losing trades, review each bad trade, Did you follow your normal process; could you have avoided or reduced this loss; would you do things differently next time? This is the way to learn from losing trades.
- Set Strategy Goals, Not Monetary Targets
Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success. Pablo Picasso
Set short, medium and long term goals, and track you growth against these targets. Monetary goals, are NOT however, an ideal approach. Beginning each day with a definite monetary goal can put pressure to reach that goal, if trading is not successful that day. This leads to emotional stress and erratic trading. Set Stratgey goals; always follow trading rules, never exceed risk limits, always place stop losses. Hitting Strategy goals, leads to a more disciplined approach and then on to better profits.
More reading: The Psychology of Trading