By Sherrie Nish
If you’ve ever had the chance to look at a chart of a big time trader, you may be astonished at the simplicity found therein. Of course, you have to find what works for you, but if you find that there are so many indicators on your charts, you may want to consider simplifying. Look at your charts and remove anything that is not necessary to decision making or information gathering in regards to trading. Try trading without those indicators for a couple of days. If you need them, you can always add them back on.
K.I.S.S. stands for Keep It Simple Stupid (or Sweetie, as my dad told me). By removing the unnecessary items from your charts, you are putting things in the simplest format as possible. Doing so tends to make better traders.
Have a KISS page. This page should contain the little things you could do to simplify your system, your trading, how many monitors you actually need along with whatever other tips and tricks you need to get things into the simplest possible way to do things. This will allow you to keep your mind focused on the most important things. As you eliminate things from your trading life, you may find that you did not need them after all.
Narrow your focus to a few trades, going for only the best of the best. There is no reason to torture yourself. You only want the trades that are easy to read. You don’t have to enter every trade that turns up. Everything needs to be part of Trading to Trade Well.
As Darrell has said, “The one thing I would note here is how we define success. Success cannot be about winning/losing or profits/losses, etc. It has to be defined as trading well and not simply trading to win. We do not control if a trade wins or loses. We control our risk management. We do control following our system from entry to exit with patience and discipline. Ultimately, risk management and disciplined, patient trading is what leads to being a successful trader. Just because you are doing risk management, discipline and patience does not mean you will “win”, but I can guarantee you won’t win over the long term without it.”
Designate another page for “P”-ing. These are wonderful words beginning with the letter “P” to help you stay focused while trading. Thanks to Craig for sharing the following, which he rotates throughout his trading week, using “remain Focused” as an extra.
Be Picky about your entry. Taking every entry that comes along can lead you to a trading fiasco! Remember Darrell’s quote, which says, “You would rather wish you have something you don’t, as have something you wish you didn’t.”
Be Patient to let the trade develop. Many times, you run out of patience while in a trade. Practice being patient and persistently picky about your trades. This is important if you want to get paid and be profitable. Take advantage of Probability. All of this P-ing is important for you to remain a focused trader.
If you’ve ever been involved with athletics, you know there are plateaus to break through. Once you identify what is holding you back, you are able to overcome the obstacle and move on to the next level. Trading is like that. Take the time to write down on a page in your binder or daily trading journal the things you want to change. These could be things like jumping into trades early, the inability to let a good trade run, etc.
This will give you a good resource that you can consult later when you are frustrated, that will help you get past that and help yourself. It will also help you get in front of those behaviors. Once you know what you are doing, this resource can be another way to give you some methods to help you overcome the behaviors that may be holding you back.
One more tip. Have a 9-1-1 plan. What happens when your internet goes out and you have a live trade going that you need to exit? Have this NinjaTrader number 312-423-2234, ready to call, along with your Broker account number. Perhaps you should have it on speed dial. You could have it on a sticky note on your computer or written on the back of your mouse pad. However, do not call them for a demo account problem. Murphy’s Law is probably working in full force, but if you have a plan in place, you will be prepared and be able to get out of the live trade if you need to do that.
Summer is a good time to read a few books that have to do with the head game that really makes up trading. Use the summer to work on your business and focus. Fill out some pages. Make your own resources. Get things organized and prepared. Catch up on any trading strategies you may need to review. Ask questions in the forum or Elite room. Utilize the slower trading times and enjoy! Keep it simple!