Just how tolerant are you?
What are you prepared to put up with or shrug off?
Ultimately we get what we accept.
Are you happy to tolerate an unreasonable boss who asks for super-human of your time but offers nothing in return? Because you're prepared to accept it, you'll end up with more of the same.
Resigned to listening to your negative, melodramatic, critical, time vampire of a friend on the phone for hours? Abracadabra - you'll end up getting more of the same because we only ever get what we accept.
Decided you can live with that extra 5 kilos that clings to your belly? Then, it'll be a part of you forever because you've decided to tolerate it.
Forgiven yourself for ignoring your stops and not having a written trading plan? Then it doesn't take a psychic to predict your future.
Some traders deserve to starve.
Where you wind up at the end of 2012 is an exact report-card on what you accepted, tolerated and let slide in your life.
Yes, we're in May. And yes – almost half of the year has gone. However, you still have time to make a stand and change - before the year is done and dusted.
Just what are you tolerating that is gravely affecting your financial future? Only you can answer this. I urge you to take a good, long look in the mirror. The only person you can blame is staring right back at you.
There are dumber, less organised, less educated and less attractive people than you making money in the markets, right now. I can tell you one quality they share. They aren't prepared to accept what you may be accepting right now. They took steps, sometimes baby steps, in the direction of their own education. They got angry. They became intolerant. They succeeded.
You owe it to your scabby, under-nourished, smelly arm-pitted, parasite-ridden, exhausted, lice-infested ancestors to succeed.
Those poor mongrels in your past fought, were enslaved, and died for centuries with barely a sliver of hope for a better future - slowly creeping towards a reality where a little freedom for the individual could be experienced.
Stop pretending you aren't wasting massive amounts of time on things that don't really count. I mean watching 'Deal or No Deal'... are you kidding me? Even if you took that one hour of brainless, couch slumping oblivion, and converted that into productive discipline - your life would never be the same. Even a moderate amount of discipline will change your life forever.
Imagine explaining to poor oppressed 'Thug', your ancestor, how you spend your time. Holy cow, he'd firstly look at you in disbelief. Then give you an almighty whack with his pointy club for wasting the modern opportunities that lay scattered before you like diamonds on velvet.
But the first move is always yours. Reach out. Grab your future. Don't be deterred. And your first step? Work out what to trade and when.
Got a Macro Filter?
One of the concepts that most beginner traders have never heard of is a ‘macro filter’. The more that I’ve traded and the more that I’ve back-tested my own personal trading systems, the more I’ve realised how important this concept is.
A good macro filter will examine the state of the overall market and tell you whether to trade long (so you can make money out of a down trend), trade short (make money out of a downtrend), or whether you shouldn’t be trading the current market at all.
If you think of the Global Financial Crisis that swept through the world, billions of dollars would have been saved in people’s superannuation portfolios if only they had learned when NOT to trade. Instead of believing that the market was falling like a warm knife through butter, they buried their heads in the sand and didn’t want to face reality.
There are times when you should trade like a bandit, and times when you shouldn’t be trading at all — and I urge you to develop rules to help you decide under what conditions you will trade.
There are lots of ways to approach this, but as a simple idea, if the overall market index that you want to trade is showing activity below the 30-week Exponential Moving Average, it’s likely to be going down, and you should consider entering short positions. If the Index is above its 30-week Exponential Moving Average, enter long positions. If the market is going sideways, according to your rules, consider not opening any new positions at all.
This is trading gold. I know it’s a simple idea, but don’t just breeze over this thinking it’s too simple to work.
So, what should you start to trade?
Most novices in the market dive into leveraged instruments far too early in their trading careers. They by-pass equities, and try a triple layered options spread over the futures markets with a twist of lime. Needless to say, they suffer the consequences.
I suggest you start with a rocking horse before trying to saddle-up a twitchy stallion. Begin with trading equities, especially in the Top 300 of Market Capitalisation, and perhaps CFDs first. Once you’ve developed your trading plan and your skill-set, then consider using more leveraged items. At that stage, follow your heart, your interests and your passions.
If trading commodities fascinates you, then immerse yourself in learning about them. If you’re more of an FX guy or gal, educate yourself in this arena. If ETFs fascinate you, indulge yourself and learn about them. Once you’ve got one non-leveraged item under your belt, you’ll find that leverage won’t freak you out. However, mark my words.
If you leverage up too soon in your trading career – you’ll not only damage your bank account, but you’ll also damage your psyche.
There is an ocean of difference between 'desire' and 'passion'. Desire is helpless. It's a sigh. It's angst. It's motionless.
Passion is action-filled, goal focused, and unrelenting. It's movement towards a goal. It combats obstacles. Passion wins.
I wish you a life filled with passions.
My passion is to help you create a future jam-packed with all of the goodies you'd choose for yourself if money and time wasn't an object. I love it. I live for it. I adore seeing the changes in people's lives because a few years back, they made trading their passion.
I see it in the cars they drive, the schools they send their children to, and the holidays they go on. Everything upgrades a level when people discover their passion, and that passion is trading well.
If you feel in your gut that I’m speaking sense, you need to register to get my free monthly email newsletter and my free 5-part e-course on www.tradinggame.com.au. Each month, I strive to bring you your 'fix', your shot in the arm, your boost so that you will not only be the best trader you can be, but also, so you can be the best person you can be.
Louise Bedford (www.tradinggame.com.au) is a full-time private trader and author of 4 best-selling books – The Secret of Writing Options, The Secret of Candlestick Charting, Charting Secrets and Trading Secrets.