How do you know you’re making progress on the road to successful trading? There’s one obvious answer: Check your financial results. There is little doubt you’re doing well if you’re booking consistent profits.
But raw capital production may not be the best way to judge your growth as a trader. The road to success has many detours where profitability isn’t the best measure of results. For example, we all go through phases in which introspection and skill development are more urgent than short-term profits. So let’s look at 10 ways to know you’re making solid progress on the road to market mastery:
1. Money management becomes your lifeline, and all your trading strategies start to revolve around its core. Risk control becomes a key aspect of every position you take. You accept that controlling losses has a far-greater impact on your bottom line than chasing gains.
2. You develop your own trading plans and strategies rather than relying on books, gurus or other people’s opinions. You notice how you’re finding more opportunities than you have time to trade while looking through your charts. You look forward to the trading day with a growing sense of confidence and empowerment.
3. You feel more like a student than a master. You learn new things every day and can’t wait to apply them to real-life trading scenarios. You listen closely to everything you hear, trying to pick up hints and concepts that will improve your performance. You expand your studies into everything market-related, including economics, fundamentals and balance sheets.
4. You stop visiting stock boards and chatrooms, because they don’t add anything to your trading goals. You realize that everyone in those places has ulterior motives. You develop a healthy skepticism about companies, market-makers and even other traders. You realize that no one is really interested in your success as a trader, except for you. (more…)