Trader Psychology: Every Elite Trader Has These Six Qualities

Trader Psychology: Every Elite Trader Has These Six Qualities

I have studied all the most successful traders in history along with the more modern market wizards and trend followers. Here are six of the qualities that I have found in common with all of them.


Ability to focus their thinking into an edge.

Rich traders can have different mental skill sets whether it’s making fast decisions as traders based on technical price action in real time or making slower decisions based on researching charts and backtesting. While they may have different mental skills they are all able to find their own edge in the markets and then focus on their specific edge whether it’s in managing trades or managing portfolios.

Elite traders find the markets they are good at trading, the time frame the perform best on, and then focus on their own circle of competence. There is an edge is focus as too many lack that discipline.


System Development Skills

Profitable traders create a system that fits their own beliefs, risk tolerance, and desired screen time. They are able to fit together elements of their own watchlist, signals, and strategies into a coherent whole so they can trade within the context of their own edge.

They are creative in connecting the dots and seeing patterns in the markets others can miss. They are designers of trades and systems that use their creativity to make something inside the mathematical parameters of profitable trading. They have mastered the skill of system development which can be a creative endeavor like starting with a blank canvas. They see the full market picture and express their creativity in their trading process.


Traders that become profitable were obsessed with learning.

Elite traders are lifelong learners. They never stop learning from the markets and by studying legendary traders. A good trader knows they can never master the markets so the learning curve never stops. Understanding that improving as a trader never ends and the real mastery is in self-control and psychology they never stop growing.

They are able to learn what the right questions to ask are and then they find out who is the right person to ask. They find the right mentors to learn from whether they are in person, books, courses, or history.

Great traders stay humble and are always seeking to learn more whatever that path looks like, whether studying new markets, new trading technologies, or reading new books. Profitable traders keep their self updated with what is happening in the markets, charts, volume, and new strategies.


Doing the required work.

They are willing to do whatever work is necessary to become and stay successful in the markets. They will put in the hours, whatever it takes. They first identify the price tag of their success and then pay it. They say yes to what they need to do, trading simulators, backtesting, chart studies, reading books, studying, trading courses, risk management, and self-control, they do it all.

They never stop learning because they never say no to the work. Rich traders outwork their competition in effort, time, depth, study, research, and experience.


Energized by the game of trading.

Traders that make it through the learning curve are the ones that are energized by the markets and trading itself. Their focus is on the game not the money, the money comes as the effects of the obsession with winning the game.

They are able to focus on the playing field because they love what they do and this is what puts the points on the scoreboard. Any normal person would quit trading when they understood the odds and learning curve but the traders that make it through it all are energized by the journey.

Passion drives the work and creates the success and that can feed a positive feedback loop to get through the valleys. Passion creates the perseverance to keep going.


They never quit.

Most new traders don’t fail, they just quit to early. Many new traders will never know if they could have been successful because they never even put in the effort to study, learn to create a trading system with an edge, and then follow it long enough too see if they could make it in the markets.

The traders that went on to be profitable and some even to become rich all had the quality of perseverance. They didn’t stop, they learned, readjusted, and kept going forward with new lessons. This is one of the most powerful characteristics of all successful people in every field. It is surprising to learn that many of the most successful people in history all had early failures but it didn’t stop them.

If it’s what you really want, then you will not quit until you reach your goal, this is an edge.

It’s difficult to have and maintain all six of these characteristics, but if you have them all the odds of your eventual success are near 100%.

If you’re interested in learning from my 30 years of experience and becoming a profitable trader you can check out my best selling trading books on Amazon here.

I have also created trading eCourses on my website here. My educational resources can save you both time and money in your trading journey. 

Trader Psychology: Every Elite Trader Has These Six Qualities
Image by Holly Burns