Stocks & Commodities V. 32:2 (38-40): Developing Your Mind To Trade Profitably by Rande Howell, MEd

Stocks & Commodities V. 32:2 (38-40): Developing Your Mind To Trade Profitably by Rande Howell, MEd
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Developing Your Mind To Trade Profitably by Rande Howell, MEd

The Never-Ending Story

You may not give much thought to self-discovery, but it plays a role in trading, especially when it comes to managing uncertainty. Find out how.

Up and down, up and down. For Phil, trading has been a roller-coaster ride for years. “Almost there. I can feel it. Why do I keep shooting myself in the foot every time things start falling into place?” he wonders. “With all the hard work I’ve put in over the years, I shouldn’t be having these problems.” He continues:

But here I am. Despite how much I know about trading, I’m still not achieving what I know is possible for my trading. When I sim-trade [simulate trading], I execute and make good money. But when I go live, I can’t produce the same consistency. I’m still profitable, but marginally. I’m certainly not trading to my potential.

Phil thought he was doing all the right things to achieve consistency in trading success. He set goals. He wrote out a plan that lays out financial goals by year, by month, and by day. He reads them over every day and then sets out to make those goals happen. He keeps his will focused on achieving those goals. This strategy had worked well in his previous career and it should be working for him now — or so he thought. Phil believed earnestly that prosperity thinking would manifest in the results he was looking for, but time was running out.

The illusion of controlling outcome

Phil’s goals are about controlling outcome and what that outcome looks like. Before he started trading, his belief was that he could exert his will and make things happen. He had made a lot of money in his previous career using this strategy for success, and he believed forcefully that it would prevail in trading as well. But his trading account was not cooperating with the beliefs he was projecting on the markets.

Consistency hangs in the balance between Phil’s dogged commitment to his beliefs about what creates success and his inconsistent trading performance. He is projecting his intentional energy into the future (that is, all those goals he plans to achieve) rather than holding it in the here and now as he executes his trades. Not that having goals is bad, but the future-oriented goals Phil has set for himself become the barriers to the success he seeks.

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