Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Don't Lose the Lesson!

This market is causing the bulls lots of frustration since last week. Traders who prefer the long side are getting kicked in the teeth, causing them to second-guess not only their trade approaches but their ability to find profits anytime soon. As the landscape changes, the market has a way of frustrating traders.

Losing trades can have the same affect - if you let them. However, if you look at each trade as just one of your next 100 or even one of the next 1000 trades you’ll make in the next year, you’ll begin to attach far less emotion to the outcome of each trade. Detaching emotion from individual trades is one of the best ways to build confidence in yourself and your long-term success as a trader.

Losses are inevitable; they simply are a part of trading. How you handle losses is what can ultimately determine your level of success moving forward. Even a losing trade can be beneficial if you take what you can from it. Ask yourself, “Why did this trade fail? Is it a function of a market reversal, or a miscalculation on my part? Was my stop-loss set too close as a result of too large a position? Did I micromanage this trade and adjust my numbers on the fly? Did I completely abandon my trading plan?” A loss means you’ve already paid the tuition, so you might as well stick around for the lesson.

Ask the right questions when a trade doesn’t work out or when you hit a rough patch with your trading. The answers you find can help you greatly as you progress as a trader. Whether those answers allow you to avoid making the same mistake again or if they just give you some closure following a bad experience, take what positives you can find and move forward.

Bottom line: cut the loss but keep the lesson!

The Stock Bandit


Blogger Dave Johnson said...

I look forward to hearing your comments on the markets. I too am an avid market follower and trader. I use the Wealth-Lab software to backtest and implement trading strategies. My blog is at http://dayvejohnson.blogspot.com
Thanks again

11:18 AM  
Blogger Carlo Giuntoni said...

Losses are there. I find it very usefull to read about psychology and trading at Steenbergers blog (http://www.brettsteenbarger.com/)and I have a subsription to Innerworth (http://www.innerworth.com/daily/iwDaily.asp) very good.



6:19 AM  

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