How does a trader live in the moment? Perhaps the first step is just intellectually considering the existentialists' proposition that anxiety is sometimes a matter of focusing on, and mulling over, the past, or worrying about the future. When you consider it, it seems reasonable to think that if you could just forget about the past and avoid thinking about the future, you will live in the present. It seems unrealistic and perhaps a little reckless, however, since it is often prudent to both learn from past mistakes and to make sure you avoid potential adverse events. But again, when you do so, it takes you out of the moment. You start to analyze and remove yourself from the ongoing experience rather than enjoying it. In contrast, trying to stay in the moment will keep you focused on the trade. And by focusing all your energy on the trade of the moment, you will reach that higher level of awareness where you'll see the market more clearly and be able to run through all possibilities at lightening speed. These concepts sound good in theory, but how do you put these ideas into practice? First it may all depend on how many past conflicts you have in the back of your mind and your self-esteem. If you are unsure of your abilities, it's hard not to worry about the future, especially when you are facing extreme pressure in the midst of a trade. If you are easily shaken by uncertainty and stress, your mind will tend to wander toward your past mistakes and regrets and you'll tend to question your ability to control your destiny. But, if on the other hand, you are especially confident, you are not likely to be troubled by your past, and can more easily live in the moment. That said, it may be extremely difficult for some to live in the moment for very long, or to stay there and completely cast aside all past regrets or worries about the future. You can strive to reach this state of existence for a short time, however, at least long enough to evaluate a trade and take decisive action. The first step is to monitor your thoughts and identify instances where you are mulling over the past. The second step is to actively try to push such thoughts out of your awareness. For example, you may think, "I wish I hadn't lost so much money on my last trade," or "I'm frustrated that I've had so many losing trades." You may think these thoughts throughout the day and it's difficult to just shut them out. But it is definitely possible to put them aside for about an hour, while you monitor a trade and decide what action to take next. You may similarly worry about the future: "I wonder if I will keep losing or will I finally make huge gains?" After you are aware of the kinds of thoughts that indicate you are mulling over the past or worrying about the future, such thoughts can be pushed aside temporarily. It may be necessary to yell "stop" or think, "Don't think about that right now; I can consider these issues later, after I'm done evaluating my trade." Now, using these strategies won't put you in that ideal mental state where you are completely in the moment, but it will help you get to a mental state that is close to the ideal. It may take some practice, but you can eventually reach this mental state. The best traders are not self-conscious about their mistakes. They don't regret past mistakes or worry about the future. They live in the moment. You can also live in the moment, if you practice cultivating the proper mindset. When you reach this peak level of experience, you'll not only be more profitable, you will enjoy trading, and find it to be fulfilling in its own right.