One thing I always tell new traders, among all other things, is “Do expect to LOSE. Because you will”.
Now, I don‘t mean, “Oh, you know, you will maybe experience a losing trade now and then”…
What I mean is that every single trader, (minus probably one person in the world who accidentally got lucky), will spiral down and lose money within their learning times.
It is inevitable.
Paper trading won‘t avoid it, no matter how rigorous. Lots of studying and planning won‘t avoid it. Being really sure that you will be „different” from everyone else in the world won‘t avoid it, either. Buying that special system or newsletter or gurus personal time won‘t avoid it. Walking on coals won‘t avoid it! Nothing.
If one decides to start trading, chances are, THEY WILL LOSE. They will experience the frustration of failure. Most people will do it for years, and will experience it over and over again.
Do I piss on anybody‘s parade? I am sorry.
And you know what? Nobody wants to hear it. The vendors scoff at me. The armchair paper traders sniff disdainfully from their Fantasyland.
Often I am being called a pessimist, a frustrated loser, a de-motivator, all kinds of these things, but at the end of the day I am right. Everybody loses. The succeeders and the failers alike. And every successful trader in the marketplace not only still loses on a regular basis, but has a drawer full of failure in their past somewhere.
The funny thing is that all of this, if you peel off its gray and dismal coat and look underneath, is actually comforting.
Why not look at it this way; if, when you were five, your parents had given you a bicycle and told you, “Now Honey, please understand that most children can ride a bike the first time they get on”, how would it have felt to have fallen off? Betrayal? Fear of never getting it right? You bet. And if every time you fell, your parents gasped at your incompetence, would not those feelings of fear and frustration intensify? Absolutely.
Listen up, new folks. What I say is, EXPECT TO LOSE. When you run into a barrier, lose more than you planned, experience too much of a drawdown – don‘t despair, because all of this is totally normal!
Still don‘t have it down after two years? Don‘t worry – most people don‘t! Stick at it.
It‘s been close to four years? Well, perhaps you are less than halfway to how long it took to some of the biggest trading celebs of the stock and commodity arena to figure “it” out. Relax, you are still being “normal”.
Is the thought of failing for years unbearable? Then don‘t get in.
If one only has enough money for one try, probably shouldn‘t get in. If one is over their head in debt or too close to retirement with too little money, better not to get in.
Hope I say it plain enough for you.
Plans are good. Learning is better. Doing is best. Doing breeds failing, through failing we find insight, and through insight we find improvement and success. The more we do, the better we become.