If you ever met a successful trader one thing you would have noticed most of them in some part of there life were related to sports. What’s the connection between being an sportsman and stock market trader? I believe it has everything to do with the qualities and the mindset that these individuals have. I have discussed few traits that I think successful traders share with elite sportsman.
Both of them are competitive.
Top athletes are highly competitive by nature and with this mindset comes their need to always look for advantages against their competition. Also, competitive athletes are often strongly self-motivated. There are few driving forces out there as strong as self-motivation. For a stock market trader to be successful, he or she must find something that sets him apart from the rest of the herd.
Do you remember Sachin Tendulkar tennis elbow injury 2004 ? Sachin Tendulkar feared his career was over when he got the surgery done. It was son worse he couldn’t even pick up his son Arjun’s plastic bat. But he remained competitive and motivated and we know best of his cricket came after recovery from this injury.
I have seen many traders lost hell lot of money, some even on brink of bankruptcy but they remained motivated and rose like a Phoenix made money that can never be imagined by a normal retail trader.
It’s this kind of motivation – this inner driving force to overcome competition – that fuels the best athletes and traders to go the extra mile to achieve their goals.
Both of them take things one at a time.
In trading, you don’t have to be right all the time. If you take each loss (or win for that matter) to heart, you may end up being paralyzed by your emotions, thereby preventing you from moving on. Your vision becomes clouded, which leads to even more losses.
Athletes win and lose in the field, just as a trader experiences good and bad trades. But at the end of the day, they know that a single game doesn’t define them, and they can move on. They use the loss as a learning experience to perform better next time, and they don’t let past failure (or perhaps even success) negatively affect their performance in the future.
Both of them have solid “basics.”
Before moving on to more advanced moves, successful athletes and traders make sure that they’ve got the basic skills covered. This is why professional tennis players spend hours and hours practicing basic forehand and backhand shot, before they even consider more complex moves such as the volley or top spin shots.
Similarly, successful traders make sure they have a solid foundation in the basics of trading. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a successful trader that doesn’t have a very good understanding of support and resistance levels and doesn’t know the basic chart and candlestick patterns by heart.
Both of them have mental and emotional toughness.
Can you imagine what would happen if Roger Federer had caved in under pressure each time he found himself in the finals of a major tournament? He probably would’ve never broken Pete Sampras’ record for Grand Slam titles!
The best athletes and traders don’t let emotions cloud their judgment and rattle them. Despite the stress and pressure that come with their work, they can remain focused and execute their game plan.
Both of them continuously work to improve themselves.
The best are the best because they constantly try to improve themselves. Top athletes know that to stay ahead of the competition, they can’t just rest on their laurels. Just take a look at Mary Kom, who over the past few years has developed from a one-dimensional fighter into a two-handed boxing beast!
I can’t stress enough how important this mindset is in trading as well. The markets are dynamic, and they will demand the very best of you day in and day out. The best in the business know the value of practice and hard work, they learn from their mistakes by reviewing past performances, and they also try out new strategies to add weapons to their arsenals.
Of course, this isn’t to say that you need to be an athlete to be a good trader. And neither am I implying that just because you’re a good athlete, you’ll be a successful trader. The bottom line is that you must treat trading the way an elite athlete treats his sport. It’s a skill that you must continue to hone. In essence, you are an athlete and the markets are merely your playing grounds.