Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wednesday Notes - Trading Potpourri

Some random thoughts as we head into the stretch run of fall trading and 2009.

The Good Doctor - Kudos to our good friend Dr. Brett for always telling it like is is. Brett recently reinforced the fact that he tried to become a full-time active intraday trader, yet found he wasn't well suited for it and instead turned his energies to helping others. I imagine sharing his own struggles has been of immense help to many traders across the globe over the years, and while I've often been critical of the many teachers/mentors who don't successfully trade intraday, he's a rare exception and beacon for many.

One thing we both have in common is a driven desire for 100% transparency in an industry where far too much is bogus, and I've learned firsthand over the recent months the tremendous energy, focus, and commitment required to truly serve others. Keep up the good work, Doc!

Blog Comments - While I'll occasionally activate the blog comment feature when seeking input, I've continued to purposely render it inactive most of the time so I can continue to channel my trading focus and energy toward my own trading. I've found I still need to ramp up my energy level and improve focus as I end the recent months of intense live teaching and set some lofty personal goals for 2010, which I believe will be my best year ever.

Life is always about constant choices, and I can choose to either facilitate a chatroom-type site, or carefully manage and direct my energies toward trading. I choose the latter.

Interview with Matt Davio - Thanks to the many E-Mails in response to recent posts on the interview with Matt Davio. It was fun talking about the early days in my own life, which may help explain why I am who I am. As I mentioned to Matt and to one of the team today when asked how I handle poor performing days, I told him it's pretty easy for me to keep perspective since I consider myself extremely fortunate to have ever been born in the first place given the fact that my parents had a devastating stillbirth two years before deciding to give it one final try.

Blog Future - Who knows ... I simply take life one step at a time. As I've said before, it's pretty tough for me to say much more that I haven't already said via text and corny sports, movie, and TV analogies. And while I've thought about going "off the grid" once again as I did a few years ago for focus purposes, the continued interest and feedback continues to fuel the desire to keep this ongoing brain dump alive.

As I've said many times, if you "get" the true intent of this blog, it's not about me ... it's about you. I just tend to have a unique way of using analogies and parables to help people see what's right in front of them.

By The Grace of God - And speaking of parables, thanks also to the tremendous outpouring in support of yesterday's Slumdog Millionaire post and "final answer". While I believe it's often better to act vs. preach my faith, you'll hopefully find hints between the lines of this personal diary that reflect the true Cornerstone of my life. As I mentioned above, it's by grace that I was ever born in the first place.

Current Team Network - One of the unintended benefits of the recent Jellie training efforts is that it's left behind a core group of professional, mature, and successful traders who remain networked together during the trading day. To this team, I consider all of you my personal friends and support system, and look forward to a highly succesful 2010 together.

Will I Ever Do Live Teaching Again? - Highly uncertain, primarily because of the energy and focus required to "do it right" (I don't believe in doing anything half-a$$), and frankly because my income drops when I teach (which should be the case for any successful trader). And since I truly believe that the best to instruct is to do so on a full-immersion basis over an extended period of time, it's again a matter of making choices.

Will the Jellie Study Sessions Remain Available? - Absolutely. As I've previously said, I believe the video series reflects the most comprehensive brain dump I'll likely ever produce, and if my kids ever told me they wanted to learn everything I knew about trading -- and in today's markets -- I'd hand them the videos in a heartbeat. And while the industry continues to tell me I've far underpriced them, I remain sensitive to trader educational costs and am maintaining the current discount and donation to charity for now.

Why Don't I Mention my P&L Performance Anymore? - This is an interesting question, especially since I took the extremely rare (for this business) approach to openly document 2008 and early 2009 daily statistics that have since been misinterpreted and twisted in a few places on the 'Net. And while I realize that sharing the data was helpful for some as I used this journal as my daily diary during my personal "race to end all races", and openly shared both the struggles and successes since it seems no one else wants to tell the full story, I've chosen for now to keep such results private ... although you'll see hints of results from time to time.

As for 2009? Here's a hint. It's just fine and will be in the high six figures. And if you don't believe that, a reminder that the wall is blue. Not bad for a year that included post-race burnout, search for new motivation, focusing on others, and a bit of a hiatus.

And Speaking of the Blue Wall ... kudos to Jean who emailed me the following:

"I have found an element of your discussion of the wall very relevant to an issue I have with trading: that of believing what I am seeing develop on the chart. Just want to thank you for this image. Have cut it out to paste near the computer as a reminder of the unconscious battle that goes on between my bias vs what is happening, and how it is such a detriment. Have started to create an idea list of why I become blind or dulled to unfolding action that goes against what I want. Goal is to get to a point of being able get past this."

What a great application of the concept.

As I said yesterday, I'm often not even the smartest person in the room.

Or this blog.