Striving for perfection in trading is a lonely place. It’s like falling down the rabbit hole in Alice in Wonderland and getting to a place where nothing makes sense, those who are already there look at you funny because they know you are trying to accomplish the impossible, and there is no way out…. Except through.
And then I found it. A secret door in the belly of that amateur fantasy land in the form of a self imposed challenge: Post 1,800 chart pictures. Dive in and wallow in the depth of your pursuit of perfection. (What’s the name of that Will Smith movie? Pursuit of Perfection? no wait…. Pursuit of Happiness. That’s right)
Here is the problem, what exactly was I trying to accomplish? Prove to myself or somebody else watching that I should be able to trade because I am really smart and know a lot and because I know so much it should be a fore gone conclusion that I am a trader and can make money from the markets and because I am so smart and am a trader, I should be different than everyone else and never have to face loss again or problems or account draw down…..
(here is where I take a deep breath…. ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh)
And then it all stopped.
GREATNESS IS NOT ONLY IN THE IMPERFECT, IT IS ONLY POSSIBLE IN THE IMPERFECT
THE AMATEUR LOOKS FOR PERFECTION, THE PROFESSIONAL KNOWS GREATNESS ONLY EXISTS IN THE IMPERFECT
So what did that do for my trading?
While I was down the rabbit hole searching for the Cheshire Cat to tell me how to be the most perfect trader that never had to experience pain or loss again, I ignored the greatness right in front of my nose. I ignored the simplicity of greatness. So I spent time this weekend, 15 minute chunks to be specific, revisiting some of the things I have already done and tossed to the garbage bin because they didn’t work exactly how I wanted them to. I opened up some stochastic, Bollinger Band, and MACD charts that I had worked with and just spent time accepting them instead of trying to perfect them.
And the results from that freedom are incredible. It is literally like someone flipped a light switch on my charts, like I was trying so hard to squint at them in a dark room and would get so wrapped up in the fact that I couldn’t see what I wanted to see. And then the light was flipped on and I stopped squinting and seeing small pictures and straining for details. I can just see full shapes and lines and patterns, and I can see rules that make sense and that are very easy to follow because they are well defined.
The key take away is this:
WHAT YOU NEED, YOU ALREADY HAVE. IT IS THERE ON THE CHART.
There is no magic, only three things:
1. Define your process
2. Add discipline to that process
3. Find your greatness in the imperfect