How does anyone do this?

Discussion in 'Trading' started by Clueless, Feb 20, 2003.

  1. Clueless


    Short synopsis:

    2 years of part-time trading:
    Month 1 made 250% (luck)
    Year 1 lost 60%
    Year 2 lost $700 (slow grind)

    Year 3:
    Prop trading fulltime for over 1 year
    Made $400 last year
    Lost $400 so far in 2003
    Lowest equity drawdown -$3000
    Largest equity drawup +$3000
    I trade 200-1000 shares
    Was scalping NYSE for 10 months, have changed style to candlestick reversals and trend following NYSE
    Since changing styles, my account's volatility has increased, but the result is still net $0.

    Random qualifications (for lack of a better word):
    IQ around 140
    Personality type: INTP (weak on the P)
    I understand expectancy and position sizing: finished Van Tharp's game with over 5 mil on first try
    NLP, therapy, thousands of hours of introspection... introspection on the act of introspection

    I've spent literally thousands of hours coding ideas into Tradestation, looking for something with positive expectancy. I have not found anything that holds up under scrutiny.

    I've spent thousands of hours reading the tape, following the trend, following the futures, watching the specialist, etc, etc. It's possible to be right about market direction, but I'm stopped out too often to take advantage. Moving stops tighter results in more stopouts, looser and the risk is too great for reward. The better I get, the better the market gets.

    I don't get it. I give up. How does anyone do this? What do they know/do differently? It's incredibly frustrating to sacrifice everything to follow this dream, to work as hard and try as hard as possible... I've focused 100% of my life on this and yet I still fail. I've never failed at anything in my life. It's a first and I truly have no idea why.
  2. Be patient. Give yourself credit AND MORE TIME. You will not fail unless you give up. There are many who took 5 years, 10 years to succeed. Don't give up!
  3. Welcome to trading.
    Its only easy and extremely profitable for beginners and vendors.
    The rest of us have a little more difficulty than it usually appears at first glance. It ain't gettin' any easier either.
  4. Ditch


    You don't need an IQ of 140 to be succesfull at trading. You just need a setup with a positive expectancy and milk that endlessly. for several setups take a look at
  5. alain


    - flexibility
    - know yourself
    - modesty
    - harmony
  6. Magna

    Magna Administrator

    Ain't that the truth, I've noticed the same. Oh well, no rest for the weary, keeps me on my toes.... :)
  7. dgmodel

    dgmodel Guest

    youre too analytical, and cerebral... the best way to describe your situation is paralysis of analysis... sometimes you just have to say the money is going this way and go with it... thats it... when you drive a car, and a car swirves in front of you into your lane, whats the first thing you do??? wonder why the driver did that or react??? same with trading following the money, and after you book the profits sit there and philosophise on why if you want or just look for another one similar to that... bottom line...

    (btw i hardly ever trade naswack only under extreme situations)
  8. 20 years ago I was working with a successful options trader. When I begged him to teach me to trade, he said "... and it will probably take 5 years or so for you to get it...". I said, "I don't know about 5 years. I'm pretty smart." He said, "I was counting on that." :eek:
  9. Try stepping away from the picture to get a bird's eye view and first think of what <b>could</b> be profitable given how for example large funds rebalance, or what happens when a stock hits some level (e.g. $5 and the margin calls' effect) etc etc - then, once you have an idea of what COULD work, go and see if it does. If you find something, chances are you might be able to milk it for a while.
    If you just keep staring at the tape etc trying to find smth, unless you have the abilities of those with autism, I don't think you are likely to find much except some mirages.
  10. ges


    You must be reading my mail....:eek:

    I'm finally doing better since I tossed the conventional wisdom about stops. But, that's probably just the type of systems I'm trading. I've had to learn to deal with quite a bit of volatility in the equity curve.

    #10     Feb 20, 2003