As traders, and probably humans, we have this amazing ability to only look at the “upside” when we choose to. We ignore risk and only focus on reward. Ever done that as a trader? Haha. I have.
“OK so this trade will make me $10,000 if the move happens that I KNOW will happen” as the price goes directly against you and you lose half what you thought you would make and then sit and stare at your screen trying to figure out if you should quit, cuss, or throw something really hard through that stupid screen in front of you…
We don’t know how to quantify risk very well. I have had to learn that the only way I will make it in this venture over the long run is to be risk oriented first, and let the rewards take care of themselves. It’s freaking hard.
Traders will find every reason in the book to not think too hard about the risk:
“I don’t want to focus on the negative, I’m a positive thinker”… K. Good luck.
“I need to take risk to make a profit”– Yes, but calling your lender to figure out how to get that HELOC in the next 24 hours to add to your margin is NOT what that means.
There are so many more but the moral of the story is:
WE MUST PUT RISK FIRST
So I want to talk about another type of risk we take on as traders. The risk of just becoming a trader.
I’m over eight years into this journey. Eight years. It feels like an eternity but also still feels like it was yesterday I was taking out sized stupid losses. I’ve made it very well known, I’m in a bit of a slump right now but my slumps now cost me very little. I have learned the fine art of being patient with getting back around to being the operator I know I am and then when I get there, getting very impatient about hammering on it. I am so close to dropping the hammer again I can taste it and it’s exciting.
To get here… Damn.
If you would have sat me down eight years ago and told me what I was going to have to go through to get here, I would have told you to piss off straight way. No way. I’m out. Done. Staying safe and on the shore. But thankfully no one had that conversation with me.
There is risk to taking on any venture. If you want to start a carpet cleaning business or a pet hotel, there is risk and learning curves. There is no way around it. But trading is unique honestly because it is so pure in it’s risk to reward ratio. The risks are much bigger but the rewards are much bigger. When I get where I’m going, there will be no amount of money I won’t be able to make. Other businesses cap out with employees and market share and blah blah blah. The reward here is great.
But the risk to get there is very real.
I have left jobs. Sat alone in front of a computer for hours and hours and days and weeks on end learning and observing. I have had to hold my actions and thought processes and work ethic and perseverance to some accountability standard that most are not willing to do. And I HATED EVERY MINUTE OF IT and fought it every inch of the way. It’s an absolute miracle I’m here.
When I did anything else in life, I could “fudge it” some days. I could do just enough to get by. Jobs, sports, so many things. Not proud of that but it’s the truth. Not here.
If you want to trade successfully over a long period of time, you will have to hold all of your thoughts, actions, and your character to a standard that is very difficult to imagine. Our discipline is tested. Our fortitude. Our perseverance but at the same time the ability to quickly adjust our course if necessary.
If you want to trade over any period of time, you will have to find out what you are willing to give up in terms of how you relate to yourself.
I have had to let go of more preconceived notions and tightly held misconceptions about life and the world around me than I thought I ever could much less would need to. I’ve had to lose pieces of myself along the way. And most likely, if your a retail friend of mine trying to make this journey, you probably will to.
It’s a good thing though. In the end, we become exactly what we want to be, exactly what we desire. And that is the reward that makes the risk actually worth it.
I am happy I have made it this far, and I am excited about the next time I get to make progress in life like this.
Have a great day