When a String of bad trades erodes your trading account emotions are high and expectations get lower and lower. Most traders spend a large amount of time fighting themselves on the path to trading success, often without fully realizing what it is they are fighting against.In the end, we know that we have no one to blame for our trading failures but ourselves.
So what are our trading minds fighting against and why should every trader understand this?
Understanding how your brain works goes a long way to understanding yourself. More You Know and Understand your Behavior it will provides you not only with confidence, but it gives you a feeling of empathy for yourself and the many mistakes you will invariably make during your trading career.
True trading mastery arises from an in depth understanding of yourself and using the two sides of your brain, the emotional side and the analytical side in harmony with each other.
The brain works like a muscle
In the beginning we learn by repetition. Once a certain behavior is deeply en-grained neural pathways are established a behavior becomes automatic. We do not have to consciously think about it any more. This is why repetition is a useful tool to establish new trading behaviors. If You will observe You will always Stop Your Vehicle at Red Signal, You will not try to Jump the Signal.
Developing a sound trading mind set through repetition of specific trading habits can be of immense value , particularly for beginning traders. The brain works like a muscle: The more weight you practice lifting the stronger it gets.
However, the problem arises when traders have acquired poor trading habits, like over trading, exiting positions too early, poor risk management, bottom picking, or picking market tops, to name but a few. Once established in the trading mind poor trading behaviors a difficult to change.
This is so, because the brain will automatically repeat a behavior, once it is established. This is true even if a trader becomes aware that a particular behavior causes trading losses. For example, if you have made money in the past based on some news based Event Like RBI Policy your brain creates the memory of a positive emotional charge. You will repeat this behavior because your brain now sees News Based Trade as a valid trading strategy which created a feel good emotion even though from a trading view point this strategy might not be a good trading habit to establish.Once a habit is emotionally anchored in your trading mind set it will take more than awareness to change it.
Understand how your mind works, and stop blaming yourself.
Fear of losing causes traders to exit positions too early and the resulting feeling of safety creates an incorrect anchor which is strengthened each time you repeat this habit. The point is this:Your brain will always seek to protect you. The untrained trading mind does so by oftentimes making incorrect associations, thus lulling you into a false sense of security.
This is the real reason why trades find it difficult to break poor trading habits.
The only way to get out of the fix is by working on your trading psychology. Spending time on improving your trading psychology is an essential part of your trading plan. This goes for the beginning trader and experienced traders too.
Time spent on clearing old conditioned behavior increases your cognitive awareness and will be reflected in greater trading success and joy of trading. You will feel better about yourself in general too, I promise you as much as someone who has walked the path and learnt along the way.