Having trouble focusing at my day job

Discussion in 'Psychology' started by Smart Money, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. This is real, and is not bragging.

    I'm a swing trader. I have a day job, and at night I do my analysis. I've been getting good at T.A., and a couple weeks ago, I had a "Eureka Moment" for a set-up for swing trades. I have back-tested it and it works better than my greatest expectations. At face value, it seems sound too. I've only been using it a couple of weeks, but it's been spot on, and I've been making good money.

    OK, here's where I'm having trouble. Whether I actually do "make it big" or fall flat on my face, I'm having trouble living and working in the now. I believe wholeheartedly that in a couple years (plus or minus), I'll be able to retire while I'm still kind of young....Ok...middle aged.

    I can't seem to get any work done now. I'm obsessing over this, and I've viewing what I do in my day job as so trivial that I'm not doing the best job that I can for my clients.

    Any recommendations for staying focused? I'm going to get fired or something and I just can't afford that right now.

  2. oraclewizard77

    oraclewizard77 Moderator

    Sometimes you just got to man up. I ran a business for a couple years before selling it, which means I had to show up on time to open the doors, turn off the alarm, and let in the customers. Worked 6 days per week, no real vacations, kind of sucked. I still did swing trading at night. If you need the job, then just focus and stop day dreaming. Think of it as a test to succeed in trading, to succeed long term you need to develop the control now.

    Set a goal for yourself and reward. For example, you will focus for the next 3 weeks and save up money to reward yourself with a vacation.

  3. Smart Money, its easy to see why you can't concentrate while working your day job. Your mind is focusing more and more on your trading. As my sister( PHD psycologist) and her husband(PHD neurologist) explained to me this a few yrs ago:

    Once your mind becomes aroused to a certain level (not sexually speaking), but as a general form of daily stimulus from a new activity, it will start to put the other thought processes used for your daily routine(job) on the "backburner". Kind of like when a person has been skiing novice ski slopes for a long time and the brain is just waiting for something more exciting to come along; and then you take to steeper, faster trails which offer more intense and pleasing thought processes which the brain now likes and prefers.

    In other words, your brain is telling you its not interested anymore in thinking about your daily job, it wants to rewire itself exclusively to think about any thought process that involves trading. Your days on your regular job are numbered.
  4. You said you had a Eureka moment? You said it works better than your greatest expectations? You said it is spot on? You said you might make it big? You believe you will be able to retire in a couple of years? You're obsessing over this?

    Usually when something sounds to good to be true it is. Maybe you should try and get back to reality because anyone who loses motivation in work based on a few weeks of trading success is childish. Anyone who gets this excited about a trading strategy after a few weeks of success is childish.

    Here is a recommendation. Think of at least three times when you were this excited about something. Did that something prove to be as good as you imagined it to be? If you love a women is that women really as rationally perfect as you perceive her to be? No. If you get excited about an infomercial that claims it can cure all diseases is it really as rationally perfect as you perceive it to be? No.

    You haven't imagined your few weeks of success because you do have a few weeks of success. What you are imagining is that you will continue to have success years into the future based on a few weeks of success.

    Tell me. What activity after a few weeks of success guarantees success over multiple years? There isn't one. If there isn't one than how do you logically figure you will be successful? You can't.

    What all this means is that you value emotional fantasy and stimulation more than logic. You can thank my four year degree in psychology.
  5. Allow me to regurgitate NeoRio1's comments in a more concise manner without all the useless garbage. If you so strongly believe you found the holygrail, why dontcha just quit your day job and start trading? If you don't have the balls to do that, then get yourself a two week vacation and see how much you can make in that time.

    No offense, but this sounds more like those who give into countless fantasies before buying a lottery ticket. But what can ya do? It's part of the human nature.
  6. kxvid


    OP, I think many of us who have been at this for a while have found the holy grain atleast a few times. Only to discover later that there was a logic flaw in our methodology. Wether it be curve fitting, wrong assumptions, basis, spreads, commissions, or the nature of the market changing.
    After I "found" the grail a few times I become jaded to this and quit looking. I now believe the real opportunity lies elsewhere.
    My advise is keep your job to pay the bills. Even if you did figure something out, it may be awhile before you can capitalize on it enough to quit your job.
  7. dowhit


    You should quit your job. Right now. Today. Walk in this morning and say "I quit!".

    Then start trading. I have faith in you. You can do it.

    (That's what you want to hear, right?)
  8. You're telling a guy to quit his job because of a few weeks of successful trading? You think someone can figure out whether to stick with a trading system after a two week vacation from work?

    You have got to be joking. Why don't you just tell the guy you want him to lose his job and you're a big enough idiot to think a two week trading period is enough time to judge a trading system.
  9. bespoke


    makes sense
  10. Hi,

    IMHO, you should be grateful for your job, because it allows you to pursue what you (obviously) love, and ultimately will be the source of your success, believe it or not.

    One of the main reasons that traders fail is because they are undercapitalized, and/or did not give themselves sufficient time to reach a level where they could maintain their lifestyle, while trading.

    So you should do the following:

    a) Set a "number" which will allow you to tell your boss to take the job and "shove it".

    b) When your bank account hits that "number", gleefully give your boss your resignation.

    c) Until then, smile, focus on the job-at-hand ... and know that you are climbing your own personal mountain of financial success.

    Good luck.
    #10     Nov 6, 2009