Being reactive to actual price action instead of predictive of what price action will be is a winning principle I have seen in many rich traders. Letting price action give you signals is trading reality, trading your beliefs about what price ‘should be’ is wishful thinking.
Great traders are bullish in bull markets and bearish in bear markets, until the end when the trend bends.
These two rules or habits simply aren’t being utilised, either because people don’t know them, or think they’re better than them.
Let me tell you this – no-one is better than the rules. And the traders that have been ignoring them are feeling this right now where it hurts.
I know of professionals who are quitting over what the market has been doing recently. I know of professionals who are at breaking point – literally a nervous wreck because they cannot fathom that the market will go higher….and yet it does.
If you don’t follow these two rules, you will never flow with the market. You will constantly be in conflict; constantly fighting and stubbornly protecting your ‘rightness’, and you will never be in tune with what the market is saying.
These two rules can be neatly summed up in one sentence.
Shut Up and Listen.
Stop talking. Stop thinking. Just listen to what the market is telling you.
I’ve identified recently that one of the most important internal abilities a trader needs is a seemingly endless supply of resilience to take daily knocks in the market and get back up. For me this shows up as a “not happening day”…
Some days its happening, but some days its not. As soon as I realize I’m in a not happening day the most important thing to do is quit right now and start again tomorrow completely fresh. Just forget it, start over tomorrow.
Each day in the market has no connection for the trader to the one before, its a clean slate. You need to just bounce back like a ball, fresh as a daisy. The sins of yesterday are completely forgiven, but you will be judged on how you act today.
Strangely I notice that these days also often line up to some degree with market behavior. My not happening days can sometimes be accompanied by a daily print that whipsawed in an ugly confused fashion.
This is not always the case, sometimes the market trends cleanly but I just didn’t get what was going on, I was in the wrong state to be doing this. Other days my head is clear but the market is a nervous wreck.
It is a strength though to be able to realize quickly that today its just not happening for what ever reason and to leave it for another day. If I’m in a position and i feel like this, I’ll just cut it, start flat tommorow. Usually these are positions that are going nowhere or else going bad anyway.