Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Power of the Pause

Here's a very simple rule that distinguishes good traders from poor ones:

Good traders trade poorly at times.  When they do, they pause from trading, reassess the market and themselves, and don't return to trading until they're in a different mode.  That different mode could be a different state of understanding; it could be a different emotional, cognitive, and physical mode--often it's all the above.  When good traders trade poorly, they make changes before placing additional capital at risk.  Pausing from trading is an essential part of their success.  It returns them to their best practices.

Poor traders also trade poorly at times.  When they do, they continue trading, and they compound their mistakes.  They never achieve a different mode, because they're so focused on markets that they never observe themselves.  When poor traders trade poorly, they place additional capital at risk before they can make changes.  That further trading is essential to their failure.  It keeps them from implementing best practices.

To determine a trader's skill, watch what they do when they are not trading.  How well do they research and reassess markets?  How deeply do they reflect and observe themselves?  It is in life's pauses that we have an opportunity to change direction.  Without powerful pauses, nothing can change.

Further Reading:  Three Best Practices of Trading