Sunday, April 24, 2011

Lesson No. 3 - Understand Yourself

Below are some of questions an aspiring trader need to ask himself and answer them honestly. It's important to understand yourself as trading is in a big way a psychological warfare you are pitting against the opposite party holding a different view. It's going to be an ongoing war that will not end until you give up and hang up your weapons. You may lose some of the battles, injuring yourself sometimes badly, but as long as you still survive and determine to fight on, the war is not over.

Believe and have faith in yourself for the task you set out to achieve. In life, you have to give yourself that opportunity, a chance to prove that you too can make it. Another option is to go all out and sell your abilities to someone who appreciate it and offer you the opportunity.

Here are the questions:

1. What are the reasons you want to be a trader?

2. What motivates you to be a trader?

3. Are you passionate and hungry to succeed in Trading?

4. Do you consider yourself a pro-active person?

5. Do you take the initiative to make things happen or you just wait for things to happen?

6. What is your initial capital?

7. How much are you going to risk in this endeavour?

8. What is your expectation?

9. Do you have a time frame for calling it quits?

10. Have you spoken to your family members and discuss with them?

11. What is your risk tolerance level?

12. What type of trader you want to be?

13. What type of knowledge have you acquired to prepare yourself?

14. What are the strategies you already know?

15. If you are still not making money using them, what are the reasons?

16. What are your strengths?

17. What are your weaknesses?

18. Can you focus on doing a job well?

19. Are you prepared for the hardwork and the challenges ahead?

20. Do you have the courage to take this giant step?

I will continue to update them as and when more questions come to my mind and welcome contributions from the old birds.


coconut said...

wow haha so many questions.

i think fat you should help them to answer those question cos many will not know what really what to be expected.

i "help" on the first one, the reason why i first came to trading is really for fun, just to try my luck and was living quit ok based on my small business partnership. and also to past time as my venture was run by my partner (he throw me out eventually haha)

i'm a gambler and i like to take risk, always look for the quickest and easiest way to make money and trading provide this opportunity.

i came without any knowledge and preparation and actually prepare to blow out cos i was not depends on it. i was thinking just as gambling.

3 process i think i went through, first gambling, next addicted to gambling (trading), then most important cure myself from that addiction and become very discipline trader.

coconut said...

ya when i first start out, the reason behind is "i want to trade badly".

now my feeling is "i have no choice but to trade".

coconut said...

and frankly, if one is not addicted to gambling and trading, it is unlikely he is going to stay in this game for long, my opinion.

Fat88Trader said...

I believe not many will bother to go through all these questions seriously but they want to be good traders the quickest and easiest way.

What's so good about trading?

Trading is no longer fun like when we were on the floor.

Electronic trading can be sometimes boring and tiring with the long hours. It's plenty of hard work and also mentally stressful.

I'm in for the money while I can have fun elsewhere.

I agree with you coconut, "I have no choice but to trade" unless I know of another way of making good money.

coconut said...

yap, i'm in for the money too, if i knew what i am going to do exactly right now, i probably (guess only) will not even want to start trading.

but here i am, electronic trading at home, lonely, boring, strict scheduling amd sometime fall asleep (due to tire), what else can one do at home? (i just went out and buy some durain eat with my buddy and came back)

thanks to position trading, i don't think i can ever rest.

coconut said...

was the floor fun?

right from the beginning, some had strongly advise me to go to the floor. what they don't understand is that i will be kill not by the market, but by the noise haha.

communicating is my no 1 killer, i prefer to communicate with the market direct, no nonsense. in fact, what i'm doing here the feeling is like trading electronically, i don't get to see people face and their emotion (sorry about that)

Fat88Trader said...

It's only a very thin line between trading and gambling. The odds are against both, thus the huge number of losers.

A good gambler should make a good trader but a good trader may not be a good gambler.

I know of many trader friends who lose big time in the casino, it's a totally different ball game. Casino provide the place and create the atmosphere for gamblers to have fun with the odds stack highly against them. Despite the knowledge gamblers still queue up happily to get in to be slaughtered.

Fat88Trader said...

The floor is definitely fun, it's like the atmosphere on the casino floor, lively, noisy and action pack but without the sleaze.

coconut said...

ya, i probably miss the floor for life.

ok, so knowing that the casino had an edge, why do they still want to bet against it, i don't understand! i don't call them good trader at all.

a good trader will not want to be a gambler and try to avoid it at all cost. but the problem with trading is that at least from the start, no one really know where the odds are. it got to be tested out before really put on a bigger bet.

so it is logical to say that a good trader will always start his trade small cos it might just turn out to be a gambling bet.

a trader can be, and is both a trader and a gambler but a gambler can only be a gambler and not a trader(haha).

coconut said...

so i disagree with "but a good trader may not be a good gambler".

oh yes, the good trader are bloody good gambler too, but they choose not to be at all cost, right? (haha this comm is going nowhere)

coconut said...

ok casino, i like that. in the casino. we know who is the boss and who are the players, the line is clear, no way around it.

on the floor and in the market place, who are the boss? who are the player? are the big player the boss? not necessary.

i feel that i swing between the house and the player, most of the time i am the house but sometime i feel like i'm the player. i do have the kind of confident and without fear and trading are most part cherry picking.

i'm sure most good trader know which side they are standing most of the time.

KAW said...

On the contrary, this trader/gambler thingy is getting interesting...because both versions has evidence to justify. Maybe we can do a poll? I shall add one more vote towards coconut version ie a trader can be both but not a gambler.

coconut said...

lastly, trading to me is like open your own mini casino, you set up your own table (counter), prepare your capital, draw your lines and limits (your management) and accept suckers bets.

ofcos when you operate in the vase market place, some time when market force you to the limit you set. fold your table, get your chips and run as thought there is a raid by the police. you know what will happen if you get caught.

coconut said...

hi forex ranger, yes we all (traders) started as a gambler, with no clue where is our edge or is there one.

at least we don't know, thats itself is an excuse being a gambler and trader, as long as we continue to learn, never stop to find and fine tune our "edge", an edge that we all self define.

but there is no excuses if we know the odds are highly against us and still we gamble, like the casino. if you do then you are not cure of your addiction to gambling.

to cure your addiction is to acknowledge that you are a gambler and it will be easier to avoid it.

i'm not saying you don't know but thats my opinion.

coconut said...

i talk to many countless about their odds on betting, i even convince them that if the odds is against them, the more you bet, the worst it is, and the longer you bet, the deeper you sink.

some understand, but still they continue to bet! their excuses is always the same, its only small money i can afford, i only need to strick once, luck is on my side haha, money is for you to spend, whats the big deal?

is it so difficult to understand that it is these small little bet that the pro are going after?

in chinese saying, "tiny water run a long way" it is these tiny water that you are collecting everyday that will make you...

Fat88Trader said...

What I meant by a good gambler is someone who makes money out of gambling, it's very rare to find one because if he can survive against all odds, I believe he will make a good trader.

I was exposed to gambling at a very young age during those kampong days. I enjoyed the thrill very much gambling anything under the sun with my friends. The odds were even, fair, skill was needed in some games to win the opponents.

Some ayams (chickens) tend to always lose in gambling and the worst thing is of course, they get addicted and kept coming back for revenge.

I'm a gambler at a young age to a big time gambler (trading) and I believe that those who have gambling blood in them should have higher percentage of winning the trading game.

coconut said...

ya, those gambling pro can make money but not in a way that trading can. game like poker and majong.

gambling is in my blood too, i can't say too much about it...

this bloody buddy of mine ever once a bookies and he never know the important of hedging his bet, so he lost most of his money, well in trading terms, average his losses.

coconut said...

oh ya, this one i can share, i'm a very good billiard player and i use to play in saloon for money, yes money (pool (not american pool) and snooker).

i even have my buddy as my casher sometimes haha.

but do i really make money out of it? i'm not too sure, we certainly spend more than we make.

coconut said...

and could you believe i have a snooker student who is a pro in table soccer? i seem him betting 5,000 in one game, table soccer haha. he is really f..k good!

oh thats many years ago.

Fat88Trader said...

Ha ha, Coconut, that's why you make a good trader because you have some gambling blood, that's what I meant.

But, great traders still make lousy gamblers in the Casino because the odd is very much against them.

I have never visited both Casinos in Singapore, firstly I'm too stingy to pay the $100 entrance fee and secondly I don't like to gamble unless the odd is fair and even.

coconut said...

so to top it out, those good gamblers are actually good traders, they don't really gamble.

they know who to gamble with (ayams), when i play pool, i look for those ayams too. but ofcos sometime i got hustle by some new players and they make me an ayam.

coconut said...

i mean seriously, i never want to bet with casino, never.

work the maths and it's easy to know in the long run, our chance of winning is zero!

coconut said...

oh and it is against what a trader should be doing, survive as long as you can. (sorry missed out)

Fat88Trader said...

Now, the trading arcade is alive with discussion on the general election.

My bet is the opposition will win at least one GRC (Group Represtation Constituencies).

Fat88Trader said...

Short the Sismci! maybe can make some money later.

coconut said...

i began to have doubts against one of my CFD broker.

sometime, they did not sent my orders in when SGX open their order books until few minutes later and sometime it make a different in my trading.

their excuse is always system problem, that's the one that i cannot flip my orders. they are one of the big brokering house and i still need their services.

coconut said...

wow thats a bold call!

i think i had enough shorts already thanks!

Fat88Trader said...

Have a alternative broker as a standby.

coconut said...

thanks fat, yes, they are my secondary broker where most of my shorts are fall in cos they had wide stocks for borrowing.

my primary broker who charges me for 0.12, is my main broker where most of the transaction take place.

last resort i'll use my cash account to trade. and worst come to worst, i can stop all trading while still hold on to my positions.

appreciate your thought.

coconut said...

ya, what stupid system is it? if you are short say 20 lots, then you cannot have a buy open order for more than 20 lots. (but you can add on to your shorts)

you have to close your 20 lots short first before you can place additional buy orders. why? i don't even bother to ask them.

dispite their higher comms, i keep them for reason that they are one top international broker with wide stocks for lending and top speed executions which i'm very impress.

being a market maker, i can't disclose the name, sorry.

coconut said...

"cherry picking", haha sometime i go through my own comment and i get angry with myself.

the best way to give example is selling of insurance where you collect your premium and hope the insurer will never die.

or if your sell option both call and put and hope the option expire within the strike prices.

so when the market moves within these parameter, you just sit and wait (cherry picking), if it fall outside you hedge or in my case, chase the market.

coconut said...

the market are now flat haha, i got a little upset today cos i didn't get some of the shorts i think i should have if the broker did not delay my orders!

oh now negative. i'm still glade.

Fat88Trader said...

Welcome to the world of Futures! Short anytime you want, but don't forget they are blue chip stocks.

Just stick to your winning formula.

coconut said...

will do.