After returning home from a swim workout, (the part I hate most about training for a triathlon), I was delighted to come home to see a very nice email. Reading this email reminded me of the emails Jason would share with us during the Pro Trader Course. This made me realize that it was around this same exact time 2 years ago when I first signed up and started my "real" trading journey.  It seems strange now, but at the time I felt like I was making one of those life changing decisions and well, I guess I was. As I went on to think about the past I asked myself this question "Akil you've have the same tools now that you did when you graduated from the Pro Trader Course so what has changed that allowed you to go from being a bad to a good trader? Well first of all I don't think I was ever a bad trader, just not a consistently good one. Many of you are familiar with my story and it may not seem like it but despite me blowing almost $50,000 dollars of a clients money I did have my shining moments. I think the main differences between myself as a rookie trader and trader I currently am are: discipline, patience, mindset and confidence.

Discipline was the hardest lesson for me to learn. I was fine when I was sitting in the live room with Jason every day, but as soon as I got out on my own my trading psychology started to take a hit. Winners started getting taken off the tables early, stops started getting taken out because of premature trailing.  Trades started being taken because they "felt" good, and of course the big one, trades were passed up due to fear.  As I look back over the past year and a half (the time passed since I rededicated myself to the craft) I can probably count on my hands the number of times that I've made one of the above mistakes. Don't get me wrong I'm 100% certain that they all have happened, the difference was they happened with much less frequency.
Patience was the second change that I noticed in not only my trading, but in lifestyle as a whole.  Despite being told to start off by trading"1 system, on 1 pair, on 1 timeframe" over and over again, when I first started trading solo, I felt as if I had to trade everything that I saw.  I'm telling you, I was a straight up cowboy. Every ABCD, every double top/bottom, every gartley, every fib retracement you name it, I was IN and I was in aggressively.  When I look back at it now I almost feel embarrassed at my actions, but if there is one bright spot I could take from it, it's that taking all of those aggressive losses really helped me to notice the difference between a good potential reversal zone and a fraudulent one. These days, especially in my swing trading, I am a very patient traders. It takes a lot for me to enter a position and because of that I have missed out on a heck of a lot of moves. Fortunately, I now realize that it's not about how many moves I miss it's about the quality of the moves that I do pull the trigger on.  This leads to the next major change that I noticed, which was in my trading mindset.

I notice this mindset a lot with many of the traders in my Live Room, especially with the newer traders. Everybody is focused on making money. I now realize that in trading the best and easiest way to make money is simply not to lose money. But let's be honest, many of us got involved in trading in the first place because we hear stories about average Joe's taking their small accounts and growing them into something crazy. Before signing up for Jason's course I stopped working 2 out of my 3 jobs in order to fully concentrate on trading.  I was smart and put enough money aside to be able to "survive" for a certain amount of time, but always in the back of my head was the idea that I needed to eventually make ___% per month in order to live off of my trading only.  What did this lead me to do, well as noted above, force trades and then try to get revenge from the losing trades that I forced by forcing even more trades.  Once the business relationship between my client and I ended, I began trading my own personal account once again. Due to my account size being so small, the idea of making a living off only trading was pretty much erased from my mind and instead of worrying about making money, my primary focus was on getting better and mastering the art of the trade. 
As I became better as a trader, my confidence as a trader continued to increase as well.  Now I've always had confidence, but there has also always been that little voice in the back of my head saying "are you sure you want to take this?" This was the same voice that was causing me to skip trades as mentioned earlier.  Now honestly, that voice has never gone away. It still whispers in my ear every time I see an aggressive bearish candle heading down to my buy limit orders. The difference is I now ignore it.  I have 100% confidence in my trading system and more importantly, 100% confidence in myself in that win or lose I made the right call. 

So looking back 2 years a lot has changed in my trading career. I now show much more discipline in my trading, I'm very patient when running through my I.P.D.E. (Identify, Predict, Decide, Execute), my mindset is in the correct place, and I have a lot more confidence all around. All of these factors have lead to me becoming a consistently successful trader. However, there is one trait that has never once changed throughout this journey, and that is my level of commitment.  Before ever hearing about Jason Stapleton, or Triple Threat Trading, or any of that stuff I made the commitment to become a professional trader.  Again, I stopped working 2 jobs in order to become completely dedicated to my goal.  I blew an account and got right back on the horse. I blew another big load of money and got right back on the horse. I knew in my head that I was going to do everything necessary to succeed even if it meant going back to cleaning banks and day care centers at night. There was no possible way that I was ever going to quit. Even when I made stupid decisions and thought I was going to go broke, I would tell myself that I would simply work my behind off until I earned enough money to fund another account then try again.  Taking courses and attending seminars is great but without that PURE DESIRE, what does it really mean? Hell of a 2 year ride. I can only imagine what I'll be writing about 2 years from now. 
Thank you for your time. 

Peter
6/15/2012

Akil, It is articles like this that inspire us first time would be, should be, wanna be, will be traders to make the necessary adjusments to our own journey in the pursuit of success. You can always tell when something is written from experience with no hidden agenda. Thanks for all the good work you do to help the likes of me and look forward to more of the same.
Peter from England.

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Shahid Mahboob
6/15/2012

Absolutely Brilliant Akil! A wise fool once said to me "Unless you make it a life of death situation, it won't get done" Also, my father taught me that "if you take care of all the little details, money will always be there in the end"

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Akil
6/15/2012

Both of those quotes are 100% true. I'm going to remember them.

Akil
6/15/2012

Thanks Peter, I've got to get out to England one of these days.

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Ken Pong
6/15/2012

Akil
Thanks for this reflection. I'm actually going through similar like what you mentioned and like you said the desire to be a consistently profitable trader is something I hold dear despite the last 1 year of blowing accounts, jumping from system to system, making many agressive trades, etc.

Until I encountered Jason's course - which has 1 very distinct feature. The emphasis on the IPDE and psychological and emotional aspect of trading which is being taken care of by the emphasis of IPDE and 1 sysem, 1 timeframe, 1 pair as well as very clear cut ROE.

Thanks

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James T
6/15/2012

Great Article Akil....right now I'm in your 2nd paragraph situation, I'm doing it on Demo though, try to look on every chart and every TF to see any pattern that I can found and trade it. I do this because I want to backtest my trade plan.

Now I think I need to cut off that kind of trading. Try again to be discipline even more. I want to be a consistent trader, well profitable too.

Thanks for the insight

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Denise T
6/15/2012

Great inspiration! I too was working three jobs and going nowhere fast. I have recently quit one of my jobs and am focusing on making this my business and life. I know I have a long way to go but this story makes me believe that it is all possible. Many thanks to Akil, Triple Threat Trading, and everyone else here for showing me the way!

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6/15/2012

Nice article Akil! Those are the exactly the same things I went through as a trader. Just a slight mindset off track can ruin my trading. Always trying to keep a calm mindset. Great work!

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Akil
6/15/2012

Thanks for the comments traders! It's pretty cool to see that all of us have or are currently facing the same struggles

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Michael Viton
6/15/2012

Good stuff. A poster i modified has jordans wing span (im sure you know the image) and i added saying that i have heard before "The Reason you get knocked down is to Learn how to get back up..the only thing you can do when you get knocked down IS to get back up", its a beautiful thing when you can get beaten and broken but you survive and succeed and appreciate those times when you had to push yourself because those are what makes you.

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Tuan
6/16/2012

i agree that you can't be rich by working 2 to 3 job or save money to rich. I thing a good rule is save 30% spend 40% and give 20% . That 30% trade your way to be a millionair some day

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This is enjoyed the most exciting article to share, can collect a lot of valuable information in your article .

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7/4/2012

nice!

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You made me remember two years back in my life, and with my only dream.

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