In the month of August, I can certainly point to some good trading opportunities. However, I can also point to many more opportunities that did not fare so well. So, what does one do? Do I subject myself to trading in a low risk environment or simply play the waiting game. This quote from Chris Lori's "Face the Trader Within" kind of sums it up nicely...
Our young friend, the gunslinger, goes hunting with his dad who has 30 years experience carefully stalking his prey and hunting them down. As the two of them head out toward the forest, gunslinger says to his dad; "Hey dad! Let’s run into the forest and shoot us a deer"!
Dad replies; "No, gunslinger; let’s quietly walk into the forest, hide ourselves, and wait for the deer to come out, once they are in perfect position, we shoot them all".
Patience is a key discipline of trading. It is ideal to wait for the market to move to a level of high probability to enter a trade, but waiting for the market to arrive at your prospective entry point can be no fun.
The human mind views making money as an enjoyable experience, because it inspires dreams of all the things one can have and do if they make a lot of money. For some reason, trading is considered an easy, or convenient, way to make a lot of money, but people do not resolve themselves to the fact that it is neither convenient, nor easy. In fact, people may find it so inconvenient, combined with their greedy desires to make money; they will frequently put on a trade without premise, because they are unwilling to wait for the proper time to enter a trade. They want to run into the bush and shoot at the first deer, regardless of what the probability is of hitting it.
I can assure you that this approach to trading will cause great pain, suffering and financial loss. Although the wait may seem agonizing at the time, I would prefer to endure a lengthy period of stalking a decisively good trade, rather than taking a shot in the dark and have to suffer through the pain of a poor decision. An irrational shot in the dark trade 8
typically results from focusing on greed and the thrill of making money, rather than possibility of loss and pain.
The markets will often go through a long period of consolidation or confused price action, which does not lend to good trading opportunities. If you do not have the ability to recognize and admit to the reality that the conditions for trading are undesirable, you will probably lose. If the market does not make sense to you, then stay out! On the contrary, the ability to wait through market indecision can pay very well when one side of the market begins to take control. You will end up with a twofold benefit; you will save from losing money in the choppy conditions, and you may reap considerable benefit when the market breaks out.
If you run into the market like a gunslinger and begin to shoot at anything that moves, you will probably have run out of bullets when a prime target walks right in front of you.
Becoming a good trader to me is not about wins and losses, but knowing when to trade (that will take care of the wins and losses). That has become more clear to me this month than ever. Part of becoming a good trader is accepting certain trues whether you want to or not. Being stubborn only sets you back. Chris's techniques have enabled me to grow my account consistantly. Once you are consistantly growing, you must take the next step of growth which is looking at the overall environment and recognizing whether it is a higher risk and less probable one or continue trading away. This is where I think I need to focus my efforts more, just to insure that I am the trader I need to be to bring ultimate success.