This is a recurring theme that's come up in people reaching out to me via DM. I'm getting asked a LOT about my 'strategy' and getting requests to review your strategies / trading plans, so I thought I'd bang out a post here as a sort of catch-all. It got to the point where I was copy / pasting the same reply to a number of people. submitted by
Strategy is really important. You definitely need a cohesive strategy or set of strategies that help determine what gets you in and out of trades. I personally run a mechanical trend-following system in addition to my discretionary style of trading. Even my discretionary style of trading however, is viewed through a framework that gives me consistent structure to follow on trade after trade.
Now that I've gotten that point out of the way, here is my next statement:* Strategy is COMPLETELY USELESS without having a thorough and expert understanding of the markets in the first place*
Here's my analogy: let's say you really want to get into the fast food business. Now let's say you're fairly smart and you realize that your best chances for success are to buy into an established franchise (McDonald's, Taco Bell, KFC, whatever). Now here's the kicker, who do you think is more likely to succeed at running this franchise? Someone who has worked within the industry their entire lives and knows it inside and out, versus someone with no industry experience. Okay, okay, that question is completely rhetorical; it's obvious who has the edge here.
Trading is no different, and it's why buying a course or finding a guru has let so many of you down so many times before. You're trying to follow an established plan (one that has in fact quite possibly brought success to whomever is selling you their wisdom), but without an expert understanding of the industry you are participating in.
If you reject my premise that knowing your shit when it comes to the macro side of things is important, that's fine. Let's take what seems to be the dominant retail route of pure technical analysis. If you don't know technical analysis inside and out, you are not setting yourself up for success when you buy a course (or even read through a free one like BabyPips). After doing a rough search for Forex courses, I haven't found any technical ones (maybe apart from Adam Grimes. I like Adam; don't know the guy personally, but know of him through colleagues) that actually teach you about technical analysis and not just are feeding you a strategy.
My entire point here is that if you don't engage with the nuts and bolts of the arena in which you're competing, you are at an inherent disadvantage. For example, I've talked to a trader that had Stochastics, RSI, AND MACD on their chart. What is the point of having 3 momentum indicators apart from enjoying a gratuitous circle jerk of redundant 'confirmation'? But this trader didn't know the math behind the indicators, what makes them similar and different, how they can be applied. If they did, then maybe they could have explained in greater detail how having those 3 gives them a defined edge.
My favourite example of a trader who 'knows their shit' is Thomas Bulkwoski. I don't like his style, but you can't deny he has done his homework. He has dived so deep into chart patterns that from memory he can quote you various failure points and success rates for individual patterns. He has meticulously studied what works and what doesn't, and can explain the WHY behind all of that.
If you don't know your shit, you will eat shit. So know your shit! Once you know your shit, then it becomes far easier to strategize.
End of rant :)
Im sry if u find some grammatical errors, english is not my mother language. Let me know and i will fix it. First of all, look for at least half an hour without interruptions to read this manual.
This is the system that has created trading professionals. He has done it and today he continues doing it, as it happened with me.
It is not a system written in any forum, in fact I believe that it has been the first to collect all the ideas and create a structure to follow to carry them out, but these same ideas and procedures have been the ones that the winning traders have used during decades and will continue to use, since they are based on completely objective and real foundations.
Let's go to it:
It is known that the observation time makes the patterns elucidate, and after some time in the forum and throughout this trading world I have found many patterns in the responses of the people, I have reasoned about them, and I have realized their failures, why they fail to be profitable.
There are people who have put effort into this. Not all, but there are people who have really read a lot, studied a lot, learned a lot and tried a lot, and even then they are not able to achieve stable profitability.
The question is: Is there enough in that effort? Is there a specific moment in the line of learning where you start to be profitable? The question is, logically.
There are traders that generate constant profitability. Hedge funds, investment firms ... and the difference is in areas where people for some reason do not want to invest time.
Why are there more messages in the strategy forums than in the psychology, journals and fundamental analysis together?
As human beings, our brain is programmed to look for quick positive responses. In nature, the brain does not understand the concept of long-term investment. There is only a short-term investment made from the difference between what we think will cost us something and what we think it will contribute. If we think that it will cost us more than it can give us, we simply do not feel motivated. It is a simple mechanism.
The market plays with these mechanisms. There are more scalpers created from the search for that positive emotion than from the search for a scalping system.
In short, we are not programmed to operate, and there lies the fact that only a huge minority of operators are profitable.
Among others, I have observed several patterns of behavior that make a trader fail
, and they are: - Search for immediate pleasure:
The trader wants to feel that he has won on the one hand, and on the other he wants to avoid the feeling of loss. Following this there are many traders who place a very low take profit and a very high stop loss. This is not bad if the probabilities have been reviewed before, the mathematical factor of hope, the relation with the drawdown .. but in the majority of the cases absolutely nothing of statistics is known. There is only that need to win. They win, they win, they win, until one day the odds do their job and the stop loss is touched, returning the account to its origins or leaving it with less money than it started. This does not work. - Search for immediate wealth:
Again it is something immediate. People want good emotions, and we want them already. The vast majority of traders approach this world with fantasies of wealth, women and expensive cars, but do not visualize hard work, the sickly hard work behind all this.
From there underlie behaviors like eternally looking for new robots or expert advisors that promise a lot of money, or new systems. The type of trader that has this integrated pattern is characterized by doing nothing more than that. Spend the day looking for new strategies Of course he never manages to earn constant money. - Think that trading is easy:
Trading is not easy, it is simple. Why? Because when you get the wisdom and experience necessary to find yourself in a state of superior knowledge about the market and effectively make money, it is very simple; you just have to apply the same equation again and again. However, it is not easy to reach this equation. This equation includes variables such as risk understanding, mathematics, certain characteristics in the personality that must be assimilated little by little, intelligence, a lot of experience ..
This is not easy. This is a business, and in fact it is one of the most difficult businesses in the world. It may seem simple to see a series of candles on a screen or perhaps a line, or any type of graphic, but it is not. Behind the screen there are hundreds of thousands of very intelligent professionals, very disciplined, very educated, very ...
This business is the most profitable in the world if you know how to carry, since it is based on the concept of compound interest, but it is also one of the most difficult. And I repeat. It's a business, not a game. I think you'll never hear a lawyer say to his boss: "We're going to focus all our time on finding a strategy that ALWAYS makes us win a trial, ALWAYS." What does it sound ridiculous? It sounds to me just as ridiculous for trading.
But you are not to blame, you have been subconsciously deceived through the advertising brokers and your own internal desires, to think that this is something easy. - Lack of discipline:
Trading is not something you can do 10 minutes on Monday and 6 on Thursday. This is not a game, and until you get a regular schedule you can not start earning money. There are people who open a graph one day for 5 minutes, then return to their normal life and then one week returns to look at it for other minutes.
Trading should not be treated as a hobby. If you want to win "some money" I advise you not even to get in, because you will end up losing something or a lot of money. You have to think if you really want trading to be part of your life. It's like when you meet a girl and you want to get married. Do you really want to get into this with all the consequences? Because otherwise it will not work.
Visualize the hard work behind this. Candle nights, frustrations, several hundred dollars lost (at the beginning) .. enter the world of trading with a really deep reason, if you lose a time and money that no one will return, and both things are finite! - Know something and pretend to know everything:
Making money in the markets is not based on painting the graph as a child a paper with crayon wax and pretend to make money.
It is not based on drawing lines or circles, or squares. It is based on understanding the operation of all these tools, the background of the why of the tools of trading.
A trend line only marks the cycle of a wave within a longer time frame, within a longer time frame, and so on indefinitely. In turn, this wave is divided into waves with a specific behavior, divided into smaller waves and Etcetera, and understanding that dynamic is fundamental to winning. It is not the fact of drawing a line. That can be done by an 8 year old boy. It is the fact of UNDERSTANDING why.
There are traders who read two technical analysis books and a delta analysis book and believe that they are professionals, but do they really understand the behavior of the market? The answer is in their portfolios. After this explanation that only 10% will have read, I will try to detail step by step something that is 90% yearning, and that will have quickly turned the scroll of your mouse to find the solution to all your problems while supporting the beer in a book of " become rich ", rotten by lack of use.
These steps must be carried out one by one, starting with the first, fulfilling it, moving on to the second, successively and growing. If steps are taken for granted, or not fully met, it simply will not work.
I know this will happen and the person who did it will think "Bah, this does not work." and you will return to your top strategy search routine.
That said, let start:
1º Create a REAL account with 50 dollars approximately:
_ Forget the demo accounts. They are a utopia, they do not work. There is infinite liquidity, without emotions and without slipagge.
These things will change when we enter the real market, and the most experienced person in the world will notice a sharp drop in their profitability when it happens to real accounts.
And not only using a demo account has disadvantages, but using a real one has advantages.
We will have a real slipagge with real liquidity. Real requotes and more. The most important: We will work our emotions at the same time. Because yes, we will lose or win a couple of cents, but that has a subconscious impact of loss.
This means that we will begin to expand our comfort zone from the start.
Using a demo account is simply a disadvantage.
2º Buy a newspaper in the stationery or in Chinese (optional), or write one online or in Word:
A newspaper will be of GREAT help. You can not imagine, for those of you who do not have one, how a newspaper can exponentiate our learning curve. It is simply absurd not to have a diary. It's like taking a ticket of 5 instead of one of 100.
In this diary we will write down observations that we make about the operations that we will carry out in points that I will explain later of this same manual.
We will divide the newspaper into 2 parts:
How to use:
- 1 part: The operation itself. We will write the reasons for each operation. The why we have done it.
- 2 part: How we feel. We will unburden ourselves without explaining how we feel, what our intuition tells us about that particular operation and so on.
We will read the newspaper once a week, thinking about the emotions we felt each day and in what situations, and the reasons.
Soon, we will begin to realize that we have certain patterns in the way we feel and operate, and we will have the ability to change them.
We can also learn from mistakes that we make, and keep them always in a diary.
3º Look for a strategy that has the following characteristics:
Therefore, the strategy must be simple. If we use metatrader, the default indicators work. No macd's no-lag and similar tools. That does not lead anywhere. And if you do not believe it, I'll tell you that in all areas of life comes marketing. In addition to trading towards MMA and now I do powerlifts, and there are 1000 exercises to do. However, the classics are still working and work very well. It seems that sellers of strange sports equipment do not share the same opinion, that the only thing they want is to sell!
- Make it SIMPLE. Nothing of 4 or more indicators or the colors of the gay flag drawn on the graph based on 1000 lines. Why? Because there is always an initial enthusiasm and maybe we can follow a complex strategy for a week, but burned that motivation, saturates us and we will leave it aside.
4º Understand the strategy:
5° Collect essential statistical information:
- We must gut each process of the strategy and reason about it. What does this indicator do? What does this process? Why this and not another? Why this exit ?. Some strategies will be based on unspecified outputs. This does not suppose any problem because as we get experience in that specific strategy, we will remember situations that have occurred, we will see situations that are repeated (patterns) and we will be able to find better starts and entrances. Everything is in our hands.
Assuming it is an intraday strategy and we do an operation per day, it will take us 100 days (3 months and 10 days approx) to carry out the study. Logically these figures can change depending on the number of operations that we make up to date with the strategy.
- This part is FUNDAMENTAL, and no operator can have as much security in itself when operating as if it uses a strategy that has at least positive mathematical hope and an acceptable drawdown.
- Step 1: To carry out this collection of information you need to test the strategy for at least 100 signals. Yes, 100 signals.
I have no doubt that after reading this manual we will go for a quick strategy of scalpers, with 100 signals every 10 minutes where the seller comes out with a big smile in his promotional video.
I personally recommend a system of maximum 2 daily operations to start, but this point is personal.
Is it a long time? Go! It turns out that a college student of average intelligence takes 6 years to finish a career. It takes 6 years just to train, and there are even more races. This does not guarantee any profitability, and in any case most of Sometimes it will get a static return and not based on compound interest. I can never aspire to more.
The market offers compound profitability, there will be no bosses, nor schedules that we do not impose. We will always have work, and we can earn a lot more money than most people with careers or masters. Is it a long time? I do not think so.
As I was saying, we will test the strategy 100 times with our REAL account that we created in step 1. Did you decide to use a demo account? Better look for another manual; This has to be something serious. They are 100 dollars and will be the best investment of all in your career as a trader.
(1 + average profit / average loss) * (percentage of correct answers / 100) -1
- Step 2: Once with the report of the 100 strategies in hand, we will collect the following information:
- How many times have we won and how many lost. Afterwards, we will find the percentage of correct answers.
- How much have we won and how much have we lost? Afterwards, we will find the average profit and the average loss.
- Step 3: With this information we will complete the mathematical hope formula:
Filling the formula:
- Of the 100 operations there are 50 winners and 50 losers, then the success rate is 50%.
- Our average profit is 20 dollars and our average loss is 10 dollars.
(1 + 20/10) * (50/100) -1
(1 + 2) * (0,5) -1
3 * 0.5 - 1
1,5 - 1 = 0,5
In this example the mathematical expectation is 0.5. It is POSITIVE, because it is greater than 0. From 0, we will know that this strategy will make us earn money over time ALWAYS we respect the strategy.
If after a few days we modify it, then we will have to find this equation again with another 100 different operations. Easy? A result of "0" would mean that this strategy does not win or lose, but in the long run we would LOSE due to the spread and other random factors.
You have to try to find a strategy that, once this study is done, the result of your mathematical hope is greater than 0.2 as MINIMUM.
Finding this formula will also give a curious fact. The greater the take profit in relation to the stop loss, as a general rule more positive will be our mathematical hope. This has given many pages of discursiones about whether to place take profit> stop loss or vice versa.
If our stop was larger than the take profit, then the other ratio (% earned /% lost) should be yes or yes positive.
But this is just curiosities.
let's keep going:
We will not be able to work with operations of 10 million dollars overnight, but we can progressively condition ourselves to that path.
- 6° Expand our comfort zone:
Assuming all of the above, and with a real account, some experience in the 3 months of information gathering and a positive mathematical hope, we are ready to operate in real with some consistency. But how to carry it out?
The comfort zone is the psychological limits we have before feeling fear or emotional tension. When we get into a fight, we have left our comfort zone and we feel tension, unless we have a psychopathic disorder.
Every time we lean out onto a 300-meter balcony from a skyscraper, we move away from the comfort zone. Every time we speak to a depampanante woman, we move away from our comfort zone.
Our brain creates a comfort zone to differentiate what we usually do and is not substantially dangerous, from the unknown and potentially dangerous to our survival or reproduction. And whenever the brain interprets that these two aspects are in danger, we will feel negative emotions like fear, disgust, loneliness, fury, etcetera.
This topic is much more profound and you would have to read several volumes of evolutionism to understand the why of each thing. The only thing that interests us here is the "what", and the one, that is, that there is a certain comfort zone that must be expanded without any problems.
With trading, exactly the same thing happens. The forex market is a virtual environment in which we lose or gain things, but our brain does not differentiate between reality and what is not, it only attends to stimuli of a certain type.
We can lose food in the middle of the forest or also a crude oil operation.
Our goal is to condition our subconscious so that it is progressively accepting lost and small benefits, and as time goes by, bigger.
The exercise to achieve this is the following:
At this point, I know how hard it is to resign myself to impatience, but follow those times and do not skip it even if you feel safe, but you will fail, it's simple.
- We will operate on that account of 100 dollars with our mathematically positive strategy for 3 more months.
- After these three months, our account should have benefits, because of the mathematically positive strategy.
- We will enter 200 dollars more and we will operate a month more raising the lots according to our risk management (I do not advise that the risk is greater than 2%)
Let's keep going:
We will test the operation one month with this new injection. We probably notice difficulties. More blockages, more euphoria when winning ... how will we know when to move on to the next entry? When we do not feel ANYTHING or at most something very shallow, when win or lose If observing the wall and operating is for you the same from an emotional point of view, it is time to enter more money.
- After that month, we will raise our capital again with a new income. This time we will enter 1000 dollars (save if you do not have 1000 dollars loose, you will recover later on, do you want to make money, enter 1000 dollars.
We will raise capital until we feel that we block too much. In that case we will drawdown to a more acceptable amount, and we will continue at that level until get discipline and lack of reactivity at that level. Later, we will go up.
- We will follow this procedure until we have a basic account of 21000 dollars. The amounts to be paid will depend on our ability to not feel emotions, a capacity that will be taking over time.
Why a month?
- If we want to earn more money, we will continue entering and entering. Always following the conditioning scheme of 1 month.
A study conducted in the United States revealed that the subconscious needs an average of 28 days to create new habits or eliminate old habits. Emotional reactions are part of the habits. If we maintain some pressure of any emotion during the opportune time, in this case 28 days, will create tolerance and the subconscious will need a more intense version of the stimulus to activate.
AND THAT'S ALL!
Follow these steps and you will triumph. Here is the golden chalice, the tomb of Jesus or whatever you want to call it. There is no more mystery in the world of trading. This system will accompany you during the next year, year and a half. It's the one I used and it WORKS. Once done, you will have a very profitable system integrated into your being, since not only will it be mathematically viable, but you will also have the necessary experience to make it infinitely more profitable yet.
In addition, you will have psychology fully worked on a professional level to have conditioned your subconscious gradually.
Happy trading to all of u guys.-
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