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Keeping Your Mental Pathways Clear

Mark TwainI love this quote by Mark Twain:

‘I have had many troubles in my life, most of which have never happened ‘

As Traders, and in life in general, it is easy to clog our brains with concerns and worries. We’ve all met people who are constantly worried about things that have yet to occur.

The thing is the human brain can hold millions of thoughts. Yet that doesn’t mean human beings are capable of functioning properly whilst moving back and forth between these thoughts. It’s human nature of course to do this, yet such behaviour will never have us functioning to our full potential as creative beings.

Mark Douglas talks about ‘trading in the zone’. We’ve all had moments in time when we have been there, yet most of us fail to stay there.

Trading in the zone isn’t as easy as it sounds. Many unsuccessful traders are too obsessed with market analysis. Clogging their brains with facts and figures and craving a sense of certainty that actually doesn’t exist. The markets will always find a way to make your in-depth analysis wrong and cause you to lose money. You are not going to live long enough to figure out why markets move in a particular direction from one day to the next.

Consequently, most traders don’t make enough money in the markets to survive and pay their bills. In fact, most successful traders also have other businesses or income generators to pay bills and build wealth. Trading is just one of them.

The freedom that comes with a full-time trading career is certainly very alluring. Yet it can also come with financial stress when markets are going sideways or moving against your positions. With stress comes brain clutter. And with brain clutter comes a lack of clarity and an inability to see the forest for the trees.

Yes, there are some full time traders that make good money. No doubt about it. Yet it is only a very small percentage.

I’ve never been a big fan of striving to be the best at anything. Trading included. Yet striving towards being the best you can be as a person, in everything you do, is a completely different matter.

We all love our trading, yet it needs to be put into perspective. That’s why it is such a personal journey for everyone.

So, keep the balance. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Keep a clear head by not cluttering it with concerns that may never become reality. Let go of the need to always be in control.

And release the need for certainty.

Welcome to the zone.

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