It feels like a long time since I wrote on the blog, and it's only been a few days. How time flies when your working nights and trading during the day. Having said that, the trading on Monday and Tuesday was patchy to say the least. If memory serves I had 23p profit on Monday and £1.02 profit on Tuesday. Today however was much better. Maybe knowing I wasn't at work tonight helped me relax and get in the zone but whatever the reason I did well, and managed to just break the £20 profit mark for the day. This leaves me pretty much back to where I was before I had my meltdown last week and lost £46. It's been a very satisfying days trading and I'm feeling both confident and happy about the whole thing. Here is my 3 day p and l.
Some of the success today could be put down to the new book I'm reading to help me combat my short comings in the trading department. I have to thank Trader Dave for the recommendation. It really is having a positive affect on my trading. When I look back at my bad days where I lose the plot and end up with a negative profit and loss, the same things always occur and being aware of these and putting them to bed are key if I'm to be successful. Here is a list of what goes wrong.
1) It starts with a losing trade, always.
2) Then one of two things happen. I increase stakes on a trade which goes well and I recoup losses which puts my mental state back to normal or I get involved with a trade without enough reasons to do so (gamble) and lose more money.
3) If the first thing happens I find I can get back on track and revert back to normal stakes and just trade again. If the second happens I find at this point that my gearbox has gone and I'm pretty much out of control regarding both staking and a selection process for each trade. In the past this would continue until either the bank was severely dented or lost altogether.
As you can see, these are not the actions of a future successful trader. I know this and that is the reason I'm trying to become more disciplined and learn how to do so. So here are a few things I've put into practise since reading the first few chapters of the book along with other bits and pieces I've picked up over the last month or so.
1) I talk to myself whilst trading. Mostly in my head but sometimes out loud. It's a bit weird at first but once you get used to it it's not that bad. I like to question my actions as I think about doing them so there is a strong reason for getting involved with each and every trade. If the signals aren't there I tell myself not to get involved and we move onto the next opportunity. This does help. Why? I'm not sure but it just does! Once I've made the correct decision, whether I end up with a red or green book, I congratulate myself for doing the right thing. This can be letting a green run or cutting out with a scratch etc, you get the idea. After each race I go through what I did well and what I could have done better but try not to beat myself up about it. This first point is to try and stop big reds. It's the bigger reds that initialise the mental tilt so preventing these are very important. So far so good.
2) The next thing I have done is set mini goals. I only have a couple as I don't want to get too caught up on things which will get in the way of my trading. I'm trying to go through the whole days trading keeping stakes consistent regardless of the result of the last race. It's hard to do but paramount as this is where I tend to start losing the plot. I also stay away from certain races. Ones with odds on favourites always seem to catch me out which can trigger bad thoughts so for now they are pretty much a no go for me. Also some of the Irish racing can be very hard to read and also dangerous due to the lack of volume. By avoiding some of my common weaknesses that trigger my tilting I'm hoping this will lead to more consistent decisions and trading patterns which will keep my head straight. So far it's working well.
Well that's about it. There is so much more to learn about myself and how I react to each situation whether it's good or bad. Staying calm in the face of adversity is tough but I'm getting there slowly. Just don't want to have any more mishaps, and I'm trying to work it all out!
Enough ramblings, it's time for shutdown. I'm on my holidays again for a fortnight and we will be having some quality family time so trading will be taking a backseat for the most part. My aim is to do some reading on an evening if I can't trade and try to put some more safety nets in place. Goodbye for now.