Discussion in 'Trading' started by dgmodel, May 6, 2003.

  1. Now that's real success !
    #11     May 7, 2003
  2. acrary


    Net profit is the only measurement I use for trading success. As we used to say to prospective traders..."Money is the only reward in trading. If you're coming into trading expecting any other benefits, then you're in the wrong business."

    Being semi-retired, I've had some time to reflect on trading. On the whole I believe it is a net negative experience. Yes, you make lots of money when done well. However, to do it well, I believe it leaves you damaged emotionally, physically, and spiritually.

    For instance, when I first started trading, my hands shook, my voice shook, and I was in and out of small positions very quickly. As time went on I settled down and the nervousness stopped. One day in Oct. of 1989 I believed the market was going to tank in the afternoon. I built a very large position during the morning and sure enough, the market collapsed in the afternoon. My whole trading desk was going nuts... lots of yelling and getting excited. That was the first time I noticed my emotions were gone. I couldn't get excited, just "ok, now on to the next trade". I've realized since then that I can't get excited when things go well, or depressed when things go bad...just flat emotions all the time.
    I think it's a heavy price to pay for trading well.

    My throat is stringy and deep from years of yelling. I don't remember what my original voice sounds like. I don't have the energy I once had. If I daytrade more than 3 days in a row, I'm so tired I start falling asleep while waiting for a setup.

    Good trading leaves me thinking in terms of spread (bid/ask) all the time. When I buy a new car, I can't help trying to figure out the spread between the dealer true cost and the bid he's making. In fact I don't buy a car until the manager shows me his profit in the transaction (opens his book). That also carries over to relationships. When someone initiates a conversation, I immediately assume the language is part of a setup that will lead to a request (execution) for something. In most cases I'm right, but it leaves you a bit chilled at the prospect of interacting. Good trading also means pressing positions when they're going in your favor. We were told it's like stepping on someones throat after you've knocked them down. A decent trader would book profits when the opponent is knocked down. I good trader will walk over and press the position until the opponent is crushed.
    All this leaves my spirit feeling guilty. I know I've knocked some people out of the game, when all I needed to do was let up and let them slip out of a position with a smaller loss.

    I have 30+ years of life left (normal expectancy) and I haven't a clue as to what I'm going to do. Nothing gets me excited. I probably need some psychiatric help. I think it's a very high price to pay for a couple of bucks in the bank.
    #12     May 7, 2003
  3. ElCubano


    You gave your life to something that meant nothing in the end....the almighty $$$$$ is very common.....good luck and thanks for sharing....
    #13     May 7, 2003
  4. nitro


    I am quiting trading tomorrow! [not today, I still have some throats to step on]

    nitro :eek:
    #14     May 7, 2003
  5. That is a very profound and thought-provoking post, Brother Acrary... my hat goes off to you for being so candid about your internal workings vis-a-vis this great trading game that we play on a daily basis... I urge you to think in terms of Darwinian evolution... yes, we end up knocking other traders out the game (if there is any truth to the premise that trading is a zero sum game)... but why should we feel guilty about this?... others came into the game fully aware of the bad odds and the difficulties associated with making a living out of trading... they decided, of their own free will, to sit at the table, and they lost... we need not feel any more guilty about things than if we had sat at a poker table and cleaned out a bunch of newly-initiated card rookies...

    I fully sympathize with your feelings of emptiness... godammit, I am probably decades younger than you and yet I too feel the ravages of my time trading impacting upon me in various ways (some of which are negative)... perhaps what you (and I) both need is to step back from our obsession and partake in more hobbies, travel, or whatever... to get our minds away from this game...

    But I will conclude by saying that, despite the negatives, the overriding measure of success in trading for me is the fact that I am able to afford not to work for anyone, unless its 100% on my terms... this feeling of liberation from the rat race of corporate life and the politics of the managerial ladder is the boon that defines trading for me...
    #15     May 7, 2003

  6. Double t, Brother nitro, double t.... :cool:
    #16     May 7, 2003
  7. dgmodel

    dgmodel Guest

    I envy you...
    #17     May 7, 2003
  8. frank123


    With all respect, I find it hard to agree with you. Traded 3 month now. Worked my ass off. My borker is thousands of dollars richer. My net equity change stayed in positive teritorry 90% of the time. Never had a huge loss (no huge gains either).

    Today, my equity decreased to the point when I started 3 month ago... Can hardly claim I am successful.
    #18     May 7, 2003
  9. Hahah your borker.. Yeah until the broker is finally held responsible when he loses another 30% of clients net worth lol.

    The big dip is still comming, put on your Livermore hats.
    #19     May 7, 2003
  10. funny little dancing trader, wonder what she/he had for lunch
    #20     May 7, 2003