Woohoo! Best feeling! I’ve just had my first consistent, back-to-back weeks, of what I would say is ‘considerable profit’ over a ‘decent sample’. I’ve had longer runs of profit in the past, but never with a decent amount of plays like the last two weeks. I’ve also never felt as in control as I have in the last two weeks, feeling good, feeling great!
I have that feeling now that the week is over. During the week though my mind ranged between; this is easy, I’m all over this, to, I really don’t want to fuck this up, booking back to back sizeable profit’s mean’s a lot to me. I’m starting to understand why many talk about the psychology of trading being equally, if not, more important than the other required skills.
“This is easy now, I know it all”. Most people have heard of the term “tilt” when talking about poker. For those that haven’t, it mean’s; playing the game with a suboptimal strategy due to emotional factors. This mostly happens when people are losing money or become impatient. However, people also go on “winners tilt”, which is; when people use a suboptimal strategy due to the emotion created from winning. The card’s are falling their way, they’re bluffing players out of pots, everything they do seems to be working. You’ll often hear people at the table that are having a session like this; say something like; “I’m hitting my flushes today, that’s why I had to call” or “I’m running hot today, I have to call”.
This thinking is totally flawed. The cards have no memory, they don’t know your name let alone whether you’re “running hot”. The chance of hitting a flush draw on the turn or river never changes. It’s the same 13 suited cards in a 52 card deck, every time. So letting your emotions tell you to call because; “I’m running hot”, makes no sense. You’ll begin to take unnecessary risks, which leads to -EV positions. On Tuesday, my first session back on the ladders, this was my mind set. I thought I was God’s gift to trading. DANGER WILL ROBINSON!
Luckily, having experienced this in poker before, I was able to identify the shift in my mindset and reign it in. Then I went to the other end of the spectrum, extreme opposite. I started realising I really wanted to back up last weeks profit with another good week. This made me start to feel a little timid and nervous while I was watching the market, looking for an entry. I started second guessing myself, missing spots I’d usually take and missing winning trades. Again, I identified my mindset in an objective manner and chin checked it, neck up you Parrot!
I came to the conclusion that; although too much of the latter (procrastination, timid, etc.) was obviously harmful to my trading success, I’d rather err on the side of caution and miss some winning plays than be an overconfident fish in the market with “winner’s tilt”.
+$591 on the week, account balance $5,652.