By Guest Contributor, Michele Hurlbut
The markets have been a bit schizophrenic these last few weeks. They are moving along at a snail’s pace and then they have these sudden surges of activity that subside as quickly as they come and back to snail’s pace again.
In addition to watching out for the sudden volatility, you also have to fight the boredom as boredom is catastrophic to trading.
Of all the places boredom is not welcome, trading is where it can bring the most damage. In my lifetime, I have done some really interesting things so that I wasn’t bored any more; some good, some not so good. And when it comes to trading, some really bad……
How does boredom show up in trading you may ask?
Have you ever been waiting for your set up and it seems to be taking forrrrrevvvver?
All of a sudden, you glance over at your email that may be open on the other screen or start ‘chatting’ with a friend or trading buddy. Next thing you know, five minutes have done by. You look over at your trade screen and your set up has passed you by.
Then you may become ‘irritated’ (my word, you may have another.) That ‘irritation’ may lead to revenge trading or worse, calling yourself all sorts of names that don’t help the situation. Or, maybe you’re bored and so you start looking for ANY trade you can take just to DO something. (Naw, you’ve never done that, she says tongue in cheek.) Ok, maybe you haven’t, but I can honestly say that I have. And on more than one occasion in my trading life time.
Boredom is catastrophic to your trading because it costs you 1) Opportunity and 2) Money!
And none of us want that.
Oh, but I can watch the markets and answer emails, you say to this newsletter as you read it; I’m a good multi-tasker. Be honest with yourself, are you really?
You are the only one you have to answer to and you are also the only one that knows your reality. Many studies have shown that, while we can multi-task and get things taken care of, we can not FULLY FOCUS on more than one task at a time. And when you are trading, you want to be FULLY FOCUSED on your trading and the gyrations of the market that make you money.
The reason I bring all this up now is because I got bored the other day while watching my charts and waiting for my 3-Step Entry to appear. It felt like it was taking forever!!
You may remember me talking a couple blogs ago about Every day be a better version of you. I still practice that daily, and today I identified how boredom creeps into my trading day.
So I spent some quality time watching my charts and experiencing what my body and mind want to do when it thinks I am bored. It was quite interesting being the outside observer.
Here is what I noticed; my concentration wandered time and time again, thinking about checking my emails or Skype to see if there was someone I could talk to. I had to consciously will myself not to do those things as I know how they take my focus off the markets.
When I hear the signal set up, and I’m not fully focused, I do not take the care I need to make sure the signal is a good one to take. While software can guide us, only the human mind can see the big picture and that takes focus!
I also recognize that sometimes we have to keep our hands busy and so I came up with a few ideas: Shell pistachios, skin soaked almonds to make your fresh almond milk, play with a slinky, squeeze a grip strengthener, play with worry balls. Anything to mindlessly occupy your hand.
The key word here being ‘mindless’. I am sure you can think of a few others and I hope you do.
Disclaimer, I thought about adding yoyo to the list but it is not as mindless as one would think and you have to look away from your charts to untangle the mess that was just made 🙂
I hope you discover what ‘boredom’ looks like in your trading so that it will not be catastrophic to your trading career.
Great trading everyone and speak with you again soon.
Join Randy in the next free LIVE Hawkeye Demonstration Room held every Wednesday at 9.30am EST US (next session postponed until Wednesday, November 7th). You will learn more about volume and volume price analysis and see more examples and live trade setups. It is open to all.
Click this link for more information or to join us in class.
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