This blog post is an excerpt from my book New Trader, Rich Trader.
“The funny thing is that the principles you have been teaching me for trading success have also been helping me in other areas of my life. I think much more clearly about many parts of my life now. My journal has expanded into a self-help journal as well as a trading journal. I did not even think about many of these things until after I learned many of the principles we’ve been discussing. I would like to read you some thoughts from my journal and see what you think.”
New Trader believed that his self-improvement would help with his trading and that he had really ingested the principles Rich Trader was trying to instill in him because not only did he understand their application for trading, but he applied them to other areas of his life.
New Trader began reading, excited to finally share these observations with his mentor.
• In life, as in trading, the right mindset is crucial for success. You must be confident in your decisions because they are based on cause and effect, not on emotions or opinion. Negative people who are unsure of themselves are not successful in any field. You need faith in yourself and your methods to be able to persevere and not give up before reaching success.
• You can risk too much and lose it all in your business, life, marriage, friendships or family. You have to measure the potential cost of every action. One affair can cost you your marriage, just like one big trade with too much risk can cost you all your capital.
• In business there are certain methods which bring in customers and turn a profit, and others which cause a business to turn away customers and lose money. Trading is similar: methods which turn a consistent and long-term profit are essential for success.
• Having unrealistic expectations in a marriage, job, or business will lead to unhappiness and failure just like it will in trading. You have to set realistic expectations so
you do not get discouraged easily and quit in any of these areas. You have to be satisfied that the results are worth your effort over the long term. You need to understand what to expect before you begin a marriage, a job, a business, or trading.
• Those who succeed in all areas of life are the ones who can manage stress the best. The best way to manage stress is to increase what you can handle step by step so that you grow into new circumstances. Another way to manage stress is to avoid actions which get you into situations you are uncomfortable with.
• Patience can pay big dividends in life. Patience is not inaction; it is simply knowing what you are looking for and taking action at the right time. Whether you are waiting for the right trade setup or the right person to marry, patience can protect you from irrational emotions and feelings. Wait for what you want, and when it is there go get it.
• In life, as in trading, people with written plans accomplish much more than people with no plans. Sit down when you are calm and rational and jot down goals to pursue. This will provide you with a map when life circumstances bring out your fears, greed, and other destructive emotions.
• Education does not end in school. To be successful in life or trading we must never stop learning. The market and the world are constantly advancing and changing and the only way to keep up is to keep learning.
• In life, the majority of gamblers are broke and the majority of good business owners become rich. The same principle is true in trading.
• In life, if you risk everything enough times you will eventually lose everything. Instead, just move in the direction of your goals every day, so even with setbacks, in the long run you will get to where you are going.
• Before making any decision in life, the question: “What do I have to lose?” is a serious question. This should precede, “What do I have to gain?” If the answer is: I could lose $100, but if I am right I could gain $500 and my odds of being right are 50% – then you have a good risk reward profile. If it is reversed, then you have a bad risk reward scenario and should pass. These are also questions you must ask in your marriage, job, business, or friendships before making decisions you regret.
• Failure to admit when you are wrong can be disastrous. When you are going down the wrong road it is better to turn back sooner rather than later. Never fight a war for a hill of bones, because even if you win, all you have is a hill of bones and regret over what it cost you.
• When you have won big prepare to take profits. Have an exit plan in place. If your house goes from $100,000 to $300,000, have a plan to sell and move. Do not just sit there and let it drop back down to $100,000. It is surprising how many people are in the right place at the right time and win what is equivalent to the lottery in stocks, a house, or a business but have no exit plan, so they ride it all the way up then all the way down again with almost nothing to show for it. Tragic.
• What most separates successful people from unsuccessful people in all areas of life is that they persevere until they are successful. Everyone has to overcome failures, but those who keep going are the ones with successful marriages, businesses, careers, and trading systems.
• People who are successful become experts in one area. They put in 10 years of learning and mastering one business, one career, one marriage, or one trading style. do not jump around and become a jack-of-all-trades and master of none.
• Successful people do what really leads to success, not what they believe will make them successful. They read books, study patterns, have mentors, and learn cause and effect.
• Winners base their actions on proven results, not on their own opinions or predictions. Feedback is crucial to them; people with strong opinions who believe they can predict what will happen reject feedback. Winners go with the flow of the trend causing their success.
• In life, those who are driven by their vision, passion, and plan usually end up where they want to be or close to it. Those who let their emotions and feelings take over and drive their decision-making usually end up where they do not want to be in life.
• I believe that people who realize they have made a mistake in a given situation and who cut those losses and try again will be much more successful than people who waste years on a marriage, business, or career that continuously gets worse. It is important to continue in a business or career that is successful until that trend changes.
If you enjoyed this post and would like to read the rest of my book New Trader, Rich Trader is available on Amazon.