Normally I only trade automated strategies. However, occasionally I get a wild hair and decide to do some discretionary trading. These times are very productive considering I normally get my auto trading ideas from these adventures. However, they almost always end up badly. I will have several days or a few weeks where I consistently make money then I lose focus and get overconfident.. next thing I know BAM I get wiped out on a few bad trades and stop my discretionary trading. The purpose of this journal is to try and keep me focused. By documenting feelings I have, and the times I notice myself getting lazy or over confident it may help me stay away from the dreaded blow ups that always result. I have a full time day job, but luckily the job allows me to glance at charts here and there and make my trades. Since I am only trading part time throughout the day, my goal will be to make an AVERAGE of $150 per day per YM contract. For now I am only trading 1 contract at a time. Some days I will not trade at all if I am busy with my real job. Yesterday was my first day "back on the wagon" so to speak. I made 5 trades for +$200. Today, I made 10 trades for +$136... After going through these "adventures" probably close to 15 to 20 separate times over the years, I am fairly familiar with the mistakes I always start making that lead to ruin. Today I could already see myself making these 3 mistakes... #1 Forcing trades. I made 10 trades today, that is way too many for what I aim to do. Since i am only looking at the screen part time throughout the day, every time I look I feel the urge to "make something happen". I need to resist that urge and wait until I see my setups. #2 Holding out past my stops. There were 3 trades today where I held on past my stopping point because I got "shell shocked". 2 of the trades recovered and I got out for a scratch. 1 of them I ended up eventually exiting near my original stop point. I survived it today, but eventually it will catch me again and lead to my blow up. #3 Jittery. Due to the few trades that went against me a bit and I didn't stop myself out when I should, it left me feeling jittery on my other trades. This caused me to jump out on small profits instead of waiting for my targets due to fear of it reversing. Not a good start when I am only the second day in and already making the same mistakes that have plagued me in the past. With any luck this journal will help me to admit to myself i'm making the mistakes and correct them before they cost me. *An Observation* I have noticed this in the past, and I am seeing it again the past 2 days. My first few trades of the day are almost ALWAYS losers. I always seem to start in a hole of about $100 before I turn around and start making money for the day. I have yet to figure out what causes this trend. Its not the time of the day, because some days my first trade will be early others not until around lunch, yet the same result. I "think" it may have something to do with the "forcing the trade" problem. Where I am just excited to get started with some trades that I rush in.... Thanks in advanced for any comments or words of encouragement. Hopefully this won't be a short lived journal, but if its anything like my past day trading adventures it might.