5 Factors To Success You Can Work On Today

Potentially one of the biggest issues a retail trader faces is finding the motivation to succeed.

After all, taking loss after loss, exiting and watching price rocket away, missing great trades, can seriously attack the motivation of anybody to keep pushing on.

If your motivation gas tank is already at zero and you have no interesting in working to fill it back up:

  1. Close your charts
  2. Close your trading account
  3. Find another hobby

If you are still reading this, you are about to learn 5 things you can focus on that will give you a “leg up” in not just trading, but anything you tackle in life.  To do that, we are going to talk about sports teams and athletes because there are many similarities in mindset between us and them.

After all, the lessons you will learn in trading absolutely carry over into your everyday existence.

This Is Not About Learning A Trading System

I’m not talking about the motivation to learn and try to do the right things in order to succeed.

  • I’m talking about the sheer determination to be successful and to not fail.
  • I am talking about the drive that takes you to the next level, beyond your emotional comfort zone and into areas you never knew existed.

Some people may find they have this fight within them naturally, but for many others it takes effort.

Prop Shop Traders

Thinking back to prop shops, although they had their drawbacks the “sink or swim” method of auditioning new recruits for the big stage did act as a big motivation to those who had a genuine desire to succeed.

  • Fail and you lose your job
  • Succeed and you’ve got a great chance of making it

But like hockey players, retail traders don’t always have this “motivator”. A typical hockey player playing top level (or even some of the lower leagues) is very talented.

They probably would like to be hugely successful and win titles. But if they aren’t, they’re still going to be paid extremely well.

They’re still going to be in with a shot of achieving success one day.

They’re still going to be comfortable.

And you see so many players like this who you know have the talent and ability to be hugely successful yet they don’t get there.

So what makes the difference with the ones who do succeed if there’s no fear factor driving them forward?

Most Talented Don’t Always Win

Well I don’t believe it’s something that is simple and happens overnight for starters. This is one of the reasons you see certain hockey teams (and other sports) always managing to be competitive.

True, the top teams tend to have the best players.

But the additional talent that these teams have rarely accounts for the greater level of performance that they manage to maintain. If it were purely based on talent, would you ever see a team of superstars fall from grace?

Would you ever see a relatively lowly team go out and cause an upset by beating a top team?

But you do see these things happen which means it can happen to you.

Success Is A Mind Game – In Sport And Trading

I think what really creates the “hunger” you see in some players comes down to a combination of psychological factors built upon skills and results. I’ll call it a recipe of the factors to success that a hockey team must have to some extent in order to develop success.

success principles

Each ingredient may be good on its own but you need a little bit of everything to make it a great dish.

The same principles can work for the retail trader who is also stuck in their comfort zone.

  1. Empowerment – they are given the appropriate tools and instructions that they believe they can succeed with.
  2. Focus on attainable targets – they are told to take things one game at a time and to focus on the present.
  3. Get psyched up – technical and mental ability are both important, but a strong emotional drive can be a game changer
  4. Confidence and belief – with results, they gain belief and go on multiple game winning runs.
  5. Mental resilience – the best teams keep these runs up because they have built up such belief and confidence that their mind-set is resilient to setbacks.

Without one or more of these factors, you could see a team go on a good run. It’s the same thing with traders and winning streaks.

But it’s when things don’t go quite according to plan that a trader or a hockey player with an incomplete mind-set will struggle to regain composure and form.

They will be inconsistent in their application and their results.  Adversity is great measuring stick to see if you actually walk the talk.

Trading Can Be Lonely

There is just one additional factor involved in a hockey players motivation that’s absent in the world of retail trading.

A hockey player usually wants to play – so they have to meet a minimum standard in order to do so. Although it’s not quite the same as the “sink or swim” prop shop model, it does provide a motivation to perform.

Not only that, but as a measure of performance they are compared with a peer group of other players. So as a player or a prop trader, there is a degree of natural competition within a group.

With retail trading, this is the majority of you, this isn’t naturally present.

Finding a group of like-minded and open traders who are willing to share and compete could be a crucial spark to really get you going.  This is why our live trading room is such a huge plus for all those traders who own our trading systems.

Whenever we read about the psychological aspects of trading, the subject are usually focused on topics with fear at their roots.

  1. Fear of being wrong
  2. Fear of missing out
  3. Fear of losing money

But drive is usually where most retail traders are lacking as it rarely exists by default in this environment.

If you take the time to cultivate an environment and mind-set where drive and determination have the chance to flourish, you’ll give yourself a competitive edge over other traders.

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Author: CoachShane
Shane his trading journey in 2005, became a Netpicks customer in 2008 needing structure in his trading approach. His focus is on the technical side of trading filtering in a macro overview and credits a handful of traders that have heavily influenced his relaxed approach to trading. Shane started day trading Forex but has since transitioned to a swing/position focus in most markets including commodities and futures. This has allowed less time in front of the computer without an adverse affect on returns.