Thursday, April 08, 2010

Keeping Your Eye on the Ideal

As I stressed in an important earlier post, great traders creates bridges between the real and the ideal: from where they stand now to where they ideally project themselves in the future. In enacting their ideals, they--to paraphrase Ayn Rand--are living in the future today. That taste of a bright future keeps them motivated and focused. They are not just concerned with solving problems and reducing their bad trading; they're actively trying to build strengths.

This key post on how to change yourself emphasizes that the key ingredient in positive change is the ability to experience ourselves through our ideals. By acting in ways that fit our values and goals, we receive feedback that affirms those values and goals--and we begin to experience ourselves in line with our experience.

From that vantage point, it is far better to trade less often and trade exquisitely well than to trade frequently and haphazardly. Each trade is an opportunity to experience ourselves; each trade is a mirror that shows us who we are. What we see in the mirror is what we'll internalize.

What do your trades mirror about you? Do your trades mirror confidence, decisiveness, hard-nosed discipline, and creative planning? Do they mirror fear: fear of loss, fear of missing opportunity? Do they mirror frustration and a loss of control?

Traders often want to change themselves in order to change their trading. They don't recognize that changing their trading can become a powerful mechanism for changing themselves. By keeping their eyes on the best within them, traders can build solid bridges from the real to the ideal and become the person that they are when they're at their best.