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Time is on your side

People from all walks of life are drawn to trading for many different reasons – a desire to do something for their financial future, to work for themselves, to build an investment portfolio for future generations, to generate cash flow, and a host of other valid reasons which are personal for each and every one of us. Of these, a large percentage want to speed up the learning curve sacrificing learning all of the steps necessary to become successful in an attempt to become profitable by the end of next week. There’s no rush, the market will be there long after you are not!

Trading is a skill that is developed and fine tuned over a lifetime. It would be helpful to the novice trader to resolve with themselves that the process can be lengthy and that no one can put a specific time on how long it will take for each individual to become a successful and profitable trader. The amount of time it will take is dependent on a huge array of factors, from time available, starting capital, market timing, life experiences, the mindset of the individual and many other personality traits and characteristics. Some will pick it up much faster than others. Ultimately though, whether one picks it up or not and how long it takes is a function of desire and then focus and perseverance.

As with anything there are two sides to learning trading, the approach, process or method that will be used and second, the correct mindset to apply that approach or method. However, there are hundreds of small steps involved in learning to trade well that add up to create the overall picture.

Here is a thought that I hope will encourage a novice trader to enjoy the process and realize that all steps are necessary, even the painful ones, and resign themselves to however long their personal journey takes them – “Trading is a journey, if you miss one step or several steps in the process one of them just might be the key for you that would put it all together”.

Think of it in these terms, if you were putting together a jigsaw puzzle and decided to randomly remove several pieces of puzzle, that puzzle would never be complete without those pieces. Each piece, no matter how small, must be in place in order for the larger picture to be viewed in full.

Building a solid and resilient trading business is also a lot like building a skyscraper. You MUST start with the foundations and make them solid and able to withstand all that the elements can throw at it, so that it won’t collapse during the first wind storm. Once the foundations are complete then the central core rises up from the ground and the fancy façade is added to the outside. If any one of the small steps along the way is omitted or neglected, the whole building is incomplete and won’t withstand the rigours of use and attacks from the external elements.

Much like a trading business – if it is patiently built from the ground up, it will withstand the rigors of the markets and still be around in many years time – unlike the traders who attempt to shortcut the learning process!


  • David Payne says:

    Thanks again Gary for your refreshingly honest pointers, I value your insights.

  • Robin Moseby says:

    Thanks Garry and one of the small steps is small risk management – some advisers suggest no more than 1 % of your trading capital on a trade and no more than 3% at any one time on all open trades and every trade has a stop loss put on at the same time as the trade.

    There would be different rules for “investors” who typically are looking at longer term trading periods.

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