Yesterday was my first trading day following a family holiday. It did not go well!
Results were disappointing – not disastrous, but I was down on the day. This was particularly disappointing as I came back in a very positive frame of mind having read Trading in the Zone by Mark Douglas while away, and after having reasonable trading results before we left.
So what when wrong?
On reflection, I don’t think I prepared myself properly before I started trading. I felt ‘rusty’ and ill prepared for the day ahead. I didn’t feel that I was connected to the markets (in a similar way I felt when I started trading) and as a result, often found myself on the wrong side of the market and lost in the noise. I likened the feeling to that when I had to write my first assignment at university after a holiday break. I had almost forgotten how to write. The only difference between writing and assignment and trading is that if you write a poor assignment you get a low mark, whereas if you trade badley you lose money!
Anyway, the day left me feeling rather deflated, so rather than allow the negative thoughts to churn around inside my head, I thought that it would be more useful to write them down in my new blog. After all, that is the reason I set it up in the first place.
What have I learnt from this experience?
- Be aware that a break in trading can leave me out of touch with the markets and the trading process.
- Following a break of more than two day, I will reduce my stakes for the first trading day until I am ‘in the grove’ once again.
- By failing to prepare I am preparing to fail – Thank you Benjamin Franklin!
- When trading is not going well STOP. Assess the situation, identify the problem and only start again once I have made changes to my understanding of the markets and my mindset.
- Understand that one poor trading day is not a disaster.
- Failing to learn from a poor trading day is a missed opportunity to learn more about the markets and myself.
- Use my blog to process my thoughts and feels (positive and negative) rather than allowing them to run around inside my head.