What It Takes to Be a Top Forex Trader
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Everything you need in order to become a complete trader
There’s no magic bullet when it comes to trading success. Let’s put that on the table in case any of you reading this are hoping to find some great secret here. We can however outline all of the elements necessary to set you up for success in trading. It’s ultimately up to you to put it all together and push yourself to be the best possible trader you can be.
What You Need to Succeed
Now, here are the ingredient list for what you’ll need to become a top forex trader:
- A solid analysis strategy.
- A good and proven trading plan.
- A good grip on trading psychology and the mental aspect of trading.
- Very good trading discipline and routine.
- To get involved in a community or social circle so you don’t feel alone.
We’ll go into each of these key elements a little later but first, we’re going to throw out a few red flags.
What Will Lead to Failure
Disregarding the positives, If you do these next few things, you know you’re doing wrong:
- Working with automation or EA’s or anything else that manages the analysis and trading for you is a big NO NO. There are no shortcuts in trading and you’ll eventually lose if you try to cut corners with a robot.
- Reading other people’s analysis in order to confirm your own actions. This means you’re not ready to enhance your trading career.
- Subscribing to trading signal services or copy trade services. This demonstrates that you don’t appreciate your own knowledge enough. Relying on others is not a sustainable model for your individual success. Check out our previous article on black boxes here.
If you’re currently engaging in any of these negative elements, the behavior needs to be nipped in the bud immediately!
If you have one of these nonos in your current trading routine, stop reading and go research how to develop your own abilities in trading.
If on the other hand you’re ready to commit to hard work and how to become a self sufficient trader, keep reading.
The Key Elements Explored
If you’re still with us, it’s time to dive deep into the positive elements needed in order to become a top forex trader.
This is not your strategy. Your trading analysis is how you view and understand what the market is telling you.
When you look at the the market, it is presented in one dimensional depth. It shows you prices which go up and down but you need to dig and see much deeper. You need to train yourself to see momentum in the market, manipulation in the market, and other unseen actions.
When you’re able to see all kind of events just from a price going up or down, you then need to figure out how you can work out the right way to invest over and over again. A solid analysis is key to understand what’s going on in the market.
Piggybacking on your market analysis, your trading strategy is how you apply what you understand from the market. Think of this as your set of tools which tell you how to go in, how to get out, how to manage things, how to hold positions, how to patiently wait for your target to get in, etc. It’s your checklist and toolset for how to execute your ideas according to your analysis.
It’s important to remember that your strategy can’t be too simplistic. If it is, other people will see the same movements which tells you that it’s too easy to decode what you’ve found and it will likely open you up for future losses.
A sound trading strategy has to be sophisticated with multi layers in order to have a plan for all scenarios and market variations.
Everything you do in the market needs to be worked out according to proper money management. Each money management strategy should be aligned and suited to your specific trading strategy. Do extensive research and testing and find a management system you’re comfortable working with.
The next thing to cover is to have a solid trading plan. This is an ironclad rule book for how you act during your trading day. It should tell you what you do and how you respond to variations in the market.
While you need to stick closely to these plans, they should also be maintained constantly and modified according to forensics and more experience as you go along in the market. If you don’t have a plan, you’re missing a giant and important chunk of your workflow.
Sticking to a trading plan also makes you more aware of how you react to different market conditions. It will grow and grow as you improve and modify the trading plan. This is why it’s so key to include in your trading routine.
Your discipline is very important because as we know, trading is a very lonely profession. You’re working solo most of the time and making decisions by yourself. It’s a very heavy weight on your shoulders and not having a boss or supervisor or coworkers to guide or direct you can leave you untethered and unfocused on basic tasks in front of you.
Discipline is essentially the way that you are able to be your own boss. You need to report to yourself and to be honest with yourself. You need to evaluate yourself truthfully and enforce tight working habits. If you don’t have the discipline, this might not be the career that’s best for you.
Master yourself in order to succeed to your fullest.
Trading Routine and Settings
How is your desk arranged, what times will you work? Determining all such factors is a key part of discipline. Every element needs to be thought about. Is it too noisy where you work, is your chair comfortable, etc.
Your trading routine should be just as rigid and predefined as if you worked in a corporate, orderly office setting. Set this up for yourself and create all the conditions that are perfect for your style and personality.
Connect with Other Traders
Go out and join a community. When you’re trading alone and feel the weight of loneliness, a community is a great way to connect to the outside world. You can surround yourself with virtual people who speak the same trading language and allow you to bounce ideas off of them. This is a great way to connect with people while also improving your trading skill.
Find a mentor that can be more dedicated to your own needs. Find someone who is at the same level or higher of understanding than you. This could be a great way to propel your career.
It is unfortunate that in finance, many people prefer to learn by themselves without a mentor. In any other aspect of life, you wouldn’t just go and try to make it on your own. You would pay for a coach, a teacher, or a mentor. You’d let them teach you, direct, and guide you towards becoming better in that profession. Trading shouldn’t be any different.
Trading is a profession of skill and you should have someone there to teach you, drill you, and make you a better professional.
It will cost money but the rewards are priceless if it pushes you to be a pro.
Don’t Keep Your Knowledge to Yourself
Last thing to mention here, but it’s huge. If you know something, be generous and teach others. Don’t be cheap and hold it like it’s a top secret! There are no secrets in trading. It’s only a matter of practice and finding what you’re best at.
When you’re generous and spreading your knowledge, you will still be learning. By exposing your knowledge, you will be able to rethink what you know in order to teach it.
Spread your wisdom and let it grow each time it’s passed on.
Photo by Marten Bjork
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