The latest entry in my Trading Journal with a particular thing noticed that i must focus on.
- What one thing did I do best this week and how did I do it?
a) Week-end homework and end of day chart analysis. I did it because i dedicated time to it.
b) Working on my edge. I still have a lot of content to go through and i made small steady progress. Again, i dedicated time to it. By focusing on the next step (chapter, video, etc) i was able to make progress, instead of being discouraged by looking at the whole picture (all the material i still have to go through)
c) Trading diary. I wrote everyday and it helps me during the week-end when i work on myself but i noticed something there. More on that below.
- What one thing did I do worst this week and what led me to do it?
a) Too much news reading, Twitter – distractions. Not plain entertainment like movies, facebook or sports, just not really relevant articles that will help me in the future. Having the Tweetdeck window opened 100% of the time certainly doesn’t help. Everytime i see a new tweet i feel the urge to read it and click the link. I have a thirst for knowledge, i crave it, thus i disperse my attention into several meaningless things.
b) Too much focused on very short term PA, which is not my forte, making me doubt myself. I spend the day in front of the chart, watching every tick of the tape. Maybe that’s not such a good idea since my trading personality appears to be different.
c) Too perfectionist. Looking for the best possible risk:reward ratio thus missing trades. All my life i’ve refused to give my 100% because i feared not to be good enough to the standards i envisioned. In short it’s always been “The best or nothing. No compromise”. This is something i’ve got to work on.
- What specifically will I do next week to continue doing what I did best?
a) I will keep dedicating time for my end of day analysis and week-end review and research.
b) I will also make time to read and making progress in the material i’ve identified as relevant for my edge.
c) I will keep using my trading journal (Edgewonk) and writing in my trading diary. However i will change the focus of what i write. Indeed, 2 tweets have particularly caught my attention this week. I know the secret is “me”, or “in me”. It’s not the strategy.
Knowing your edge solves nearly all psycholgical issues. For example lack of patience….people run to a psychology book…
— Tom Dante (@Trader_Dante) September 26, 2015
Lastly, know yourself and be yourself. We compete on 1) information; 2) analysis; and 3) behavior. The last one offers the biggest edge.
— Ed Borgato (@EdBorgato) September 26, 2015
“Your behaviour is the biggest edge.” A book will not tell you what you specifically do wrong and why. A good trading journal might. I’ve noticed my diary is basically a copy of the charts. I just handwrite what’s happening. I must change the focus to me, to how i react to the market. My behavior. Only then will i be able to spot weaknesses i could correct.
- What specifically will I do next week to improve what I did worst?
a) Distractions. I will focus on spending my time wisely, on things that matter. I will try to be effective AND efficient. Do a lot of things, what “normal people” call “hard work”. But focus on the things that matters. Plant a seed today to reap the fruit tomorrow.
b) I will stick to my higher timeframe premise, no trying to guess what will happen today but rather follow the bigger picture.
c) Perfectionism. I will aim for profitability, not perfection. Specifically i will accept getting AN entry, not THE best entry. This will impact the risk to reward ratio but as long as its relation with the winrate gives a positive expectancy i will act and enter the trade.
- How well did I achieve my “continue my best” goal last week and what do I need to do this week to continue/improve upon that progress?
I aimed at maintaining my level of preparation and i can confidently say i succeeded. This is a routine that i like although i do admit it’s sometimes hard to decline family, friends, girlfriend requests for a lunch, a walk, or just time. Hence the crucial element of spending time efficiently and effectively.
- How well did I achieve my “improve my worst” goal last week and what do I need to do this week to continue/improve upon that progress?
My goal was to be sharp and ready by Frankfurt open. This is still a work in progress. I can be ready by 6am BST but i tend to take my time when i’m not clear on the next day plan. I may sleep a bit more, take more time to eat and shower, “since i have no plan for today and i don’t have a clue of what might happen”. It’s good that i stay out of the market and exert patience for my setups to show up again BUT it doesn’t help me build discipline, which i may need in other areas of my trading. I will therefore make an effort to be ready each and everyday.
There it is. My second trading journal entry following Dr. Steenbarger’s template. I can already see improvements, and i’m stupid for not doing it every week.