What's in a goal?

Discussion in 'Trading' started by jonbig04, Oct 26, 2008.

  1. I, like many others have a weekly goal in my trading. Mine is based of points of the NQ. My question is this: Why do we have point goals? Is a point goal something you want to have after 5 days of trading? Or is it simply a number you want to reach? If its the latter than it make sense to stop trading when you reach your goal, even if its Tuesday morning. But then whats the difference in continuing trading the following day (after meeting your goal) and trading the next Monday? What if you find you are meeting and exceeding your goal during the week, but giving a lot of it back before the end of the week? Does it make sense to STOP trading until next week, protecting your profits so to speak? Notice I used weekly goals as an example, but the same could questions could be asked of daily, monthly, or even yearly goals. So, what the heck is a goal?
  2. yayt


    Something to aspire to (ideally?)

    Something needed to pay the bills (I certainly hope not)
  3. I used a goal for a while because it helped me to regain self-control from a problem of letting losses run. That's what the goal was for me, a trick to help me with my own psychology. I wasn't batting for the fences (and subsequently not being able to admit defeat) when I wasn't ready for that with my trading skills yet.

    I think a lot of the decisions traders make are just decisions to get past their own psychology, but that doesn't mean they are bad decisions. Finding a method *you* can live with is really important.
  4. yayt


    I think instead of a goal of points or dollars or cents or what have you, one should focus on adhering to whatever rules one has and not letting things get out of hand (whatever one's risk tolerance may be)

    So instead of "I'd like to get 20 YM points a day", it should be,

    "I will always put in a stop loss with my order so I will never lose 5 points+slippage per contract"

    This is something that a trader can completely control, whereas sometimes the market won't really care how many thousands of dollars you wanted to make today :)
  5. Thats why I'm confused as to what I should do. I want to make X points a week. I dont care at all about anything above that...but I feel like if I stop trading its just a psychological feel-good...and I'm not sure if I should steer clear of that entirely.
  6. a goal is needed to be consistently profitable.. its the point in which you stop trading

    without a goal you're bound to overtrade.
    *your goal must be reasonable and attainable
  7. omniscient

    omniscient Guest

    to me, any goal is a target. if i don't have a target, how do i know where i'm going or when i get there? everyone has to find out what goals get them moving. point goals, trade goals, daily goals, money goals, weekly, monthly, you name it, some target.

    to quote Yogi Berra:
    and everyone has a goal with every single trade: for the trade to move in a favorable direction. after that, it's going to vary a million different ways.

    btw, i wouldn't want goal = target to be misconstrued as goal = ceiling or goal = limit. i think that happens very often in this game.
  8. Are you making money with your extra trades? If so, I don't really see why you need a goal. A goal is something to have to fix a problem, either you're not making enough to satisfy yourself or you're trying to bet too big and need to be satisfied with a smaller amount. If something isn't broken, though, why try to fix it?

    So, that being said, what exactly is broken about your trading that you're trying to fix with a goal? Do you feel you overtrade, take on chances that really aren't the best ones to take? Or what? From my perspective of a goal being a problem solving tool, it really helps to know what the problem is.