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Trading Educators Blog

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Jul
12

Controlling Emotions

​ Winning traders cannot afford to be influenced by their emotions. The nature of trading demands an objective, logical approach. If you experience extreme excitement after a win and extreme disappointment after a loss, you will be living on an emotional roller coaster: up and down, up and down. Many beginning traders have head knowledge of what it means to control their emotions. They can imagine...
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95 Hits
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Jul
12

Your Own Way

​ Don't follow the crowd! You've been warned over and over, but few are that independent minded. Breaking away is harder than it looks. We are all familiar with the rebel, the person who breaks all the rules and is skeptical of the status quo. At the other extreme, the ultra-conformist seems to follow the rules too blindly. Neither extreme is optimal for trading. It's necessary to find the right b...
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166 Hits
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Jul
04

Evaluation of your Trading

​ Taking an honest evaluation of your own strengths and weaknesses is crucial to becoming a consistently profitable trader. If you can't identify those habits which continually make (or cost) you money, then you're just shooting in the dark. It's extremely important that you know things about yourself such as: The time of day you are most profitable. The position size that works best for you. Your...
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112 Hits
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Jul
04

Trading Slump

​ Jake has just made three losing trades in a row? He decides he is in a slump and is now worried that he can't get out of it. But is he really in a slump? Perhaps he's just panicking for no good reason. He may just have a pessimistic attitude, but this might be enough to keep him stuck. Thoughts are powerful. The reality of the situation may not matter. All that matters in the end is your percept...
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196 Hits
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Jun
27

Shoulda-Coulda-Woulda Mentality

​ Winners take credit for their successes and full responsibility for their losses. Losers blame others for their losses and take full credit for their successes. A "shoulda-coulda-woulda" mentality does more than characterize the losing trader, it prevents him from making positive behavioral changes. Acceptance of total personal responsibility is not an optional choice for a winner it is a mandat...
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201 Hits
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Jun
24

What is a mental stop and should I be using them?

What is a mental stop? Why are traders afraid of them? Are they worthwhile? Why would anyone want to use a mental stop? Let's begin with why anyone would want to use a mental stop! It is usually preceded by your having been stopped out of the market only to have the market reverse and go the other way, causing you to miss a possibly profitable trade. That being said we can now address the question...
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99 Hits
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Jun
23

State of Mind

​ Making profits as a trader is often a matter of trading in the proper state of mind. Trading expert Dr. Van K. Tharp, author of several best-selling books on trading psychology and head of the Van Tharp Institute, describes three states of mind that may dictate how you approach trading. As traders gain experience with trading the markets, they move from a "having" state of mind to a "doing" stat...
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294 Hits
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Jun
19

Staying Relaxed

Experience and trading from a plan can help you to make trades in a carefree, relaxed, and focused manner. It is important that you avoid putting unnecessary pressure on yourself. Success or failure is not riding on a single trade. You make it as a trader in the day-to-day trading, learning to be satisfied with what the market hands you. Avoid thinking you have to be right. You cannot impose your ...
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207 Hits
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Jun
19

Wisdom

​ It would be wonderful if there were a foolproof and valid instruction manual for how to trade the markets profitably, a cookbook of sorts where you merely follow the steps and you are successful. For decades, traders have tried to find recipes for financial success. For some, the Holy Grail comes from the latest trading guru. For others, it may be a new software program. As appealing as a tradin...
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271 Hits
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Jun
13

Distraction

Distraction is not something you can afford. If you cannot be fully focused on the price action and on following your trading plan, you are going to frequently find yourself in the situation you describe. The best rule a trader can follow is to focus on the action, not the outcome. Yes, I know that you, like many others are attracted to trading for the rewarding profits that can be made. You feel ...
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244 Hits
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Jun
13

You Need Control

The need for control is the biggest psychological impediment to profitable trading. Traders strive to control the markets, but in the end, they find that they must accept their fate and settle for controlling their emotions. When your money is on the line, it's difficult to remain calm, rational, and in complete control. You want to win, and there is a strong need to want the market action to fall...
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345 Hits
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Jun
06

Persistence is Needed in Trading

​ Trading is a profession where dare not give up in the face of adversity. You must go into the trading day expecting to have losses. It's not the most optimistic outlook, right? Trading in today's markets isn't like trading in the steadily upward trending markets in the days before the advent of a PC that could let you see charts. In the days when markets trended as opposed to swinging, just abou...
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270 Hits
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Jun
06

Trouble Winning

There has been great interest in the markets lately, so there's no reason that you shouldn't take home huge profits, right? Although many traders profit, there are some who still can't seem to make a profit, even during relatively good times like these. Let's consider some of the psychological impediments that may limit success. The most obvious reason for an inability to win is a lack of experien...
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349 Hits
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May
30

Worry-Free and Profitable

Even though there is great interest in the markets these days, and more opportunities than usual, it's vital to approach trading with the proper mindset. You can't try to do too much, too fast. Successful traders approach trading with a carefree, focused attitude and putting added stress on yourself interferes with attaining this peak performance mental edge. When you are in the proper mindset, yo...
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404 Hits
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May
30

Pivot Points

​ I have never been a pivot point trader per se. Pivot Points are those price levels that are most likely to act as levels of so-called support and resistance on any given trading day. As we already know, anything that most people use is liable to work. This is the only reason that theories like Fibonacci trading or Elliott waves appear to be more than just theory. For the same reason, the most in...
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346 Hits
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May
22

Believe in Trading

​ Is there anything we can believe when it comes to trading? Is it all lies and fakery? Trading is a challenge. Tens of thousands are drawn to trading, but few last more than a few months. Trading is presented in such a way that it appears to be easy, so it's difficult to face the truth that trading is difficult—at least until you can get the hang of it. Many beginning traders need to win. They ar...
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310 Hits
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May
10

Impulsive Trading

​ Why do so many traders abandon their trading plan? Is it their personality, an inherent pitfall of the trading profession, or temporary insanity? A host of factors may contribute to a lack of discipline. Depending on your personality, background, training, and experience with the markets, you may have trouble reigning in your tendency to act on impulse. For some people, impulsivity is in their n...
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398 Hits
  2 Comments
May
10

Is Trading all Lies and Fakery?

​ Trading is a challenge. Tens of thousands are drawn to trading, but few last more than a few months. Trading is presented in such a way that it appears to be easy, so it's difficult to face the truth that trading is difficult—at least until you can get the hang of it. Many beginning traders need to win. They are hoping that the huge profits they make trading will solve many problems in their liv...
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320 Hits
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May
03

Hoping to Break Even

​ Jim has been holding a position for six months. A media analyst predicted the stock would hit $100 by the end of the year. He bought it at $75. It went down to $50, and it's on the way back up. During the recent interest in the markets, Jim is hoping that it will hit $75 so he can sell it and break even. The break-even point is critical. When you are on the losing side of a trade, all you can do...
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419 Hits
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Apr
19

Rest Periods

During ongoing activities, such as day trading, you have to learn how to pace yourself. This means alternating between times of intense activity with times of greatly decreased activity, times that require very little of your attention. These "rest periods" should take place when you do not have to quickly react to sudden market moves. This is hard advice to follow for some traders. They just won'...
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395 Hits
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Derivative transactions, including futures, are complex and carry a high degree of risk. They are intended for sophisticated investors and are not suitable for everyone. There are numerous other factors related to the markets in general or to the implementation of any specific trading program which cannot be fully accounted for in the preparation of hypothetical performance results, and all of which can adversely affect actual trading results. For more information, see the Risk Disclosure Statement for Futures and Options.