bondtrader's Blog

Futures Trading, Musings, and Random Thoughts

Thursday, September 09, 2004

38 Steps to Becoming a Successful Trader

I've had this written down in my notes and I feel it bears mentioning again as we start a new season of trading. It's a good reminder and review for what we need to do to achieve success in this most difficult endeavour, successful trading.

I'm reprinting it here from Here it is:

Steps to Successful Commodities Futures Trading
as published Commodity Futures Trading Club and in Traders Organization's Real Success Daytrading Course

    1. We accumulate trading information - buying books, going to seminars and researching.
    2. We begin to trade with our 'new' knowledge.
    3. We consistently 'donate' and then realize we may need more knowledge or information.
    4. We accumulate more information.
    5. We switch the commodities we are currently following.
    6. We go back into the market and trade with our 'updated' knowledge.
    7. We get 'beat up' again and begin to lose some of our confidence. Fear starts setting in.
    8. We start to listen to 'outside news' & other traders.
    9. We go back into the market and continue to donate.
    10. We switch commodities again.
    11. We search for more trading information.
    12. We go back into the market and continue to donate.
    13. We get 'overconfident' & market humbles us.
    14. We start to understand that trading success fully is going to take more time and more knowledge then we anticipated.


    15. We get serious and start concentrating on learning a 'real' methodology.
    16. We trade our methodology with some success, but realize that something is missing.
    17. We begin to understand the need for having rules to apply our methodology.
    18. We take a sabbatical from trading to develop and research our trading rules.
    19. We start trading again, this time with rules and find some success, but overall we still hesitate when it comes time to execute. We start trading again, this time with rules and find some success, but overall we still hesitate when it comes time to execute.
    20. We add, subtract and modify rules as we see a need to be more proficient with our rules.
    21. We go back into the market and continue to donate. We go back into the market and continue to donate.
    22. We start to take responsibility for our trading results as we understand that our success is in us, not the trade methodology.
    23. We continue to trade and become more proficient with our methodology and our rules.
    24. As we trade we still have a tendency to violate our rules and our results are erratic.
    25. We know we are close.
    26. We go back and research our rules.
    27. We build the confidence in our rules and go back into the market and trade.
    28. Our trading results are getting better, but we are still hesitating in executing our rules.
    29. We now see the importance of following our rules as we see the results of our trades when we don't follow them.
    30. We begin to see that our lack of success is within us (a lack of discipline in following the rules because of some kind of fear) and we begin to work on knowing ourselves better.
    31. We continue to trade and the market teaches us more and more about ourselves.
    32. We master our methodology and trading rules.
    33. We begin to consistently make money. We begin to consistently make money.
    34. We get a little overconfident and the market humbles us.
    35. We continue to learn our lessons.
    36. We stop thinking and allow our rules to trade for us (trading becomes boring, but successful) and our trading account continues to grow as we increase our contract size.
    37. We are making more money then we ever dreamed to be possible.
    38. We go on with our lives and accomplish many of the goals we had always dreamed of.

I'm somewhere between steps 32-35, working on getting to step 36. So my goal now is: To stop thinking and allow my rules to trade for me.

Hopefully, by the end of the year, I will get to step 38.

What about you - which step are you in?

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Results for Sep-08-2004

Today's tradelog:

Tradelog 20040908

Fewer trades were made today as I wasn't able to get into any trades in the morning. The trade setups were there; but either I was away from my computer, or ER2 was moving so fast that by the time I clicked by BUY order, it had moved away from my entry point. I didn't want to chase the trade, so I waited for the next entry point(s).

This morning the market looked a little choppy, so I took my time in taking the trades which were higher probability. Today, there was one instance where a trade turned out to be a fake-out, so sometimes fear, or its better counterpart "caution", worked in my favour.

Today's trades were mostly done in the afternoon New York time.

As for yesterday's trading, I ended the day feeling I had managed my trades better than usual, and so I ended up with smaller losses than I would normally have. That is the one factor that made my trading results yesterday better than I had expected.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Results for Sep-07-2004

Here's the tradelog for the day:


13 trades, 19 ticks (1.90 points) captured. Not too bad, considering I went back to bed around 7:15am PDT.

I'll post my review of the trading day later today. Got to run for now!