Last time, we took an overall look at the concept of “Turning Pro” from the book, “The War of Art”. This week we’ll drill down into the first point towards “Turning Pro” and the steps you can take to get there.
The biggest thing that separates a professional from an amateur is that the professional shows up everyday. He doesn’t wait for the weather to be perfect, for motivation to strike or all the stars to align for him before showing up to work. He shows up day in and day out whether he feels like it or not. You won’t ever hear LeBron James say…I don’t quite feel like going to practice today, so I’ll just skip it and watch TV instead. For a professional, not showing up is not an option. A professional shows up to work every day, no matter what.
Yet, if you ask Forex traders what their daily routine is, they don’t have a good answer for it. So many traders don’t take trading seriously or approach it like a business or a profession. They show up to trade when they feel like it. They do their analysis when they feel like it. They take trades as the mood strikes them. There is no consistency to their work.
How to Become a Pro
Trading like a pro isn’t easy, but it’s also not as complicated or difficult as one might think. Here are 5 steps you can take to put yourself in the top 5% of Forex traders.
1. Pick a session to trade
Picking a session to trade is the first step towards becoming consistent. Many traders think that the more sessions they trade, the more profits they’ll make. This, however, is a myth. I recommend picking one session, especially in the beginning when you’re a novice trader. Each session (New York, London, Asia) has its own quirks and characteristics. It is a good idea to learn these and the price behavior for each session before jumping around. The more you focus on one session, the more in-tune you’ll get with the way the market moves in that session and the better your trades will be.
2. Pick a time to do your market analysis
When you work for someone else, you’re expected to show up to work every day and on time. Showing up inconsistently is not an option unless you want to lose your job. Think of trading the same way. Your boss, the market, expects you to show up on time, every day. Pick a time half an hour to an hour before the market open to start your trading day. This will give you enough time to do your market analysis and prepare for the trading day.
3. Create a consistent daily routine for trading
The more consistent you get with your trading, the better results you’ll see. Create a daily routine for your trading. If you currently don’t have one, feel free to follow mine, as outlined in the “3 Steps to Consistent Forex Profits” guide. Get the free guide below.
4. Set weekly goals
One of the mistakes many traders make while trading is not setting any goals. If you want to accomplish anything, you have to set goals around it. If you don’t have any goals, how do you measure your performance. In trading, it’s not always about results. There are times when you follow your plan and yet, you lose your trade. It could be an external factor coming into play that changed the market direction or sentiment. In such a case, as long as you’ve followed your plan, you’ve done well. However, if you don’t set goals and track them you’ll not know when you’re hitting your goals and where you need to make adjustments. For best results, set a combination of action based goals as well as results based goals.
5. Track your progress
This brings us to our next point, tracking progress. As important as it is to set goals, it is even more important to track your progress. We don’t want to just track our profits and losses but our actions as well. How many times a week did you show up to work (your trading job) on time? How many times did you do a post market review? How many times did you follow your trade plan? Track all of these and soon you’ll start seeing trends that’ll help you improve your trading.
Yes, turning pro is hard. In fact, it is painful. There are days when I’d rather sleep in. However, it is well worth the price.
The failure rate in forex trading is huge. The simple matter of the fact is, that as retail traders we are inconsistent most of the time. We would all like to become better, more successful traders. However, we work towards this goal inconsistently. Only when we feel motivated or when it’s convenient for us to do so. I get it; it’s just easier that way. However, I promise you, you start approaching your trading like a pro and soon you’ll join the ranks of professional traders and be in a position to make your dreams a reality.