As we saw in lesson 3, there are going to be some really bad days. Just like a professional pitcher or cornerback however, you have to have a very short memory. The mistake you made 5 seconds ago must be forgotten immediately while you are still in the game. Afterwards, you will have time to reflect on your mistakes and what you can do better.
There is no time to sulk or bemoan what could have been. You must stay in the moment and have laser focus on what is happening in the now. The second you don't do so, you open yourself up to the next mistake and the next.. Next thing you know your bad morning has turned into a bad day, that turned into a bad week, and then a month.
It can happen that quick, and you are now in a vicious losing cycle. When I say losing cycle, I'm not talking about closing a trade for a loss - I'm talking about carrying a losers' mentality. So our first attribute is therefore:
1) Winners don't focus on one bad play or one bad hand. They put it behind them immediately and move onto the next one.
I'm going to let Calvin Coolidge explain winning attribute number two.
"Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent."
2) Refuse to lose. Keep fighting in the face of adversity - Stay persistent in the pursuit of your goals, and know you will get there.
You can see that there are a lot of sports and gaming analogies in these pages. It's because athletes are used to taking coaching. They can learn and then execute a game-plan under pressure. They are ultra competitive and want to win. So let us repeat:
3) Take coaching, Master and then execute your playbook.
An often cited quote is that it takes 10,000 hours of 'deliberate practice' in order to become world class at something. While this point is argued and challenged by many, it really shouldn't be. The best prepared mind, the one that has thought through all angles and scenarios, as well as their response to these various scenarios is more likely to execute their playbook under pressure when the lights are on.
A desire to simulate this type of environment and create this learning tool for traders was one of the Driving factors to the development of the Alchymist platform.
I want to, and I wanted our traders to have a user friendly platform where they could go back throughout time and study price history; identify conditions at the time of market inflection points, and develop a intuition of how price behaves. You can only do this through continuous study and practice. As 10,000 hours is about 50 hours a week for 5 years, I think that's a fair number. Attribute 4 is:
4) Practice. Work. Practice. Then be ready to work some more.
While practicing scenarios it's important to not become rigid, but rather carry an open way of thinking. Practice doesn't mean memorizing for a spelling bee; its preparing your mind to deal with any potential scenario - You are flexible and ready to adjust to changing circumstances.
5) Be flexible. Go with the flow, not against it.
While there are 1,000s of attributes of a winner that could be considered, these 5 are very important to think about - Whether in trading, or any other career endeavor for that matter.
Carry a winning mentality. Think and act like a winner, and you just may become one.