Solution if you are in Stress while Trading

1. Think positively. Being optimistic helps in stressful situations. Do not let stress affect your mind and keep focusing on the positive side of your trading. What we think may result in decisions that can lead to better or worst situations. Thinking positively helps in making good decisions.
2. Change your response to stress. Being able to manage stress means developing strategies to deal with stress. Think of stress as a reaction rather than an event. It makes it easier to identify healthier ways to manage stress. Learn to Reframe Your Brain when adrenaline kicks in as the result of a win or a loss.
3. Task division. No man is an island. As a human being, we cannot survive being on our own. Having a trading mentor or trading buddy can provide both a sounding board and a support system. 
4. Manage your time. Time is such that once you lost it, you can never get it back. Managing and limiting your trading time will help to keep your emotions and trading on track. 
5. Learn your priorities. Our behavior towards ourselves and others may also contribute towards stress. Sometimes it is important to say no towards requests that you find it hard to meet. Keep in mind that by saying ‘yes’ to everything may please everyone but you may add on more stress and cause disappointment if the target is not meet. (more…)

4 Trading Fears

As Mark Douglas points out in his great book about trading psychology is that the majority of traders lose because of wrong thinking, misplaced emotions, and wanting to be right. We know fear and greed drive the market prices far more than fundamentals do. However fear makes traders do the wrong things at the wrong time. Here are four great examples of fear over ruling sound trading strategies.

Here are more thoughts about these four fears:

The fear of being wrong: Traders fear being wrong so much they will hold a small loss until it becomes a huge loss. Even adding to the loss in the hopes of it coming back and getting to even. Don’t do this, holding on to a loser after it hits your predetermined stop loss is like being a reverse trend trader. Do not be afraid of being wrong small be afraid of being wrong BIG.

The fear of losing money: New traders hate to lose money, they do not quite understand yet that they will lose 40%-60% of the time in the long term. We should come to expect the small losses and wait for the big wins patiently. Many times traders fear this so much that they have a hard time taking an entry out of fear of losing. If you can’t handle the losses as part of the business, you can’t trade.

The fear of missing out: The opposite of the fear of losing money is the fear of losing potential profits. This causes traders to watch a stock go up and up, miss the primary trend, then not being able to take it any more and get in late just in time for the trend to reverse and lose money. Trade at your systems proper entry point do not chase a stock because you are afraid to miss out on some profits.

The fear of leaving money on the table: When your trailing stop is hit get out of the trade. If your rules tell you to get out after a parabolic run up and stall then exit. You must be disciplined on taking money off the table while it is there. Being greedy for that last few dollars when your system says to sell could lead to major losses of paper profits. Let your winners run but when the runner gets to tired to continue: bank your profits.

Trading Wisdom

One of my favorite trading tales involves a very wise, veteran trader who, when asked his thoughts on the market, would simply respond by saying “It’s a bull market,” or “It’s a bear market.” Younger traders simply seeking out a hot tip from the seasoned pro would often leave discouraged – or even annoyed, believing they were being fed a line. JL himself didn’t understand until years later the wisdom that was actually being dispensed with those words: The veteran was simply relaying the path of least resistance, or the trend for the general market, and therefore giving the trader an incredible edge in determining one of the many variables that makes up stock trading.

Traders should equate the general market to that of a big river with individuals stocks as floating logs. If ones objective was to ride in the general direction of the current, they would not stand on the bank looking for a log that was bucking that trend? Furthermore, even if they found one that temporarily headed in the wrong direction, more than likely it would only be a matter of time before the log reversed course and also headed in the way of all the other logs.

Traders would be wise to understand there are 3 directions a market can travel; up, down or sideways. As long as we trade stocks, this will be true – and just as valuable as Livermore’s seasoned trading friend’s advice was then it would be today.

Markets, like rivers, don’t change courses overnight – or even in a few days. It often takes many months if not years to properly establish a trend. Simply pull back any weekly chart over the past couple years and assess where the trend is going. If you aren’t quite sure, then more than likely cash remains the place for you.

Understand this basic, yet key, principle of trading, and you will already be well ahead of most.

A Method to Measure Risk and Return

Placing a trade with a predetermined stop-loss point can be compared to placing a bet: the more money risked, the larger the bet. Conservative betting produces conservative performance, while bold betting leads to spectacular ruin. A bold trader placing large bets feels pressure or heat from the volatility of the portfolio. A hot portfolio keeps more at risk than does a cold one. Portfolio heat seems to be associated with personality preference; bold traders prefer and are able to take more heat, while more conservative traders generally avoid the circumstances that give rise to heat. In portfolio management, we call the distributed bet size the heat of the portfolio. A diversified portfolio risking 2% on each of five instrument & has a total heat of 10%, as does a portfolio risking 5% on each of two instruments. Our studies of heat show several factors, which are: Trading systems have an inherent optimal heat. Setting the heat level is far and away more important than fiddling with trade timing parameters. Many traders are unaware of both these factors. COIN FLIPPING One way to understand portfolio heat is to imagine a series of coin flips. Heads, you win two; tails, you lose one is a fair model of good trading. The heat question is: what fixed fraction of your running total stake should you bet on a series of flips?

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