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Trading Education Posted by Team Topstep April 19, 2022

Success Comes Through Perseverance

Hiking Uphill

Recently, I had a trader friend reach out to me after reading my article about self-inventory following the first quarter of trading in 2022. I realized that trading has been challenging this year for many of us so far. Perhaps we are profitable, but the time demands have begun to interfere with many other needs. 

Any trader must endure quite a bit to become successful in the long term. For many, there are money issues. Unfortunately, few of us ever have enough money to start with that enables us to persevere through the mistakes and maintain enough to trade without having “scared money.” 

For others, the time factor is most prominent. These traders don’t have the necessary time to invest in immersing themselves in the critical process of learning and practicing. Meanwhile, others can never seem to get their hands on the right resources, whether they be tools or persons who can better influence their trading decisions. 

We are all tempted to throw in the towel and give up somewhere along the way. These are frequently the darkest moments in a trading career, and when this happens, you are not alone. We’ve all been there. 

Sometimes it’s due to the time of year. Some tend to be of a more pessimistic mindset in the colder winter season, while others during the heated summer. For some traders, volatile markets cause them to want to surrender their trading aspirations. Meanwhile, for others, markets that are too still and quiet tend to bring out the worse psychological responses. But, even for some, their trading depression is less due to the markets than to other critical life events that seem to prompt a widespread negative emotion over every facet of life. 

Success Comes Through Perseverance

Regardless of your reasons, if you are considering giving up, then you may want to read this article first. Chances are, you are looking for a reason not to give up, and this material may help prompt your internal reflections. 

Take A Deep Breathe 

Many of us are tempted to respond impulsively to disappointment. Sometimes, the best thing to do is get a breather and let time pass. Perspective doesn’t come suddenly, but in time, it may need to be anywhere from hours to days, weeks, or even months before re-engaging. 

You should be able to decide the duration of your hiatus, dependent on what has gone wrong. However, when we feel at our worst, tomorrow often feels better and different. And remember this, no successful trader made it without persevering through the same type of trials you are facing. 

Take Control of What You Can Manage

You have limited control over the outcome of your trades. However, there are various factors that you can determine and manage. 

The first element is to get your schedule straight. Your schedule may have limitations, but you can still manage your time accordingly. 

Secondly, you might tighten up your trading rules regarding risk to reward ratios, your entry and exit criteria, and a host of other variables that serve as possibilities for improved trading. 

Get Some Support

Trading can be a lonely business, especially in the retail world, where many of us have started by ourselves. So one critical piece of advice is to incorporate yourself into a support network, a community that will enable you to grow. 

Other traders have endured anything the same setbacks you will confront. Furthermore, part of getting support is not limited to how to maneuver the markets specifically but also how to encounter the emotional, mental, and physical swings that the trading life interrupts. 

Is The Trading Life For You?

If you are on the verge of giving up, you’ve already started assessing this question. However, there is a difference in confronting this matter from a position of strength compared to a posture of weakness.

For the latter, weakness, we are prone to see ourselves as failures, incapable of making good on hopes, dreams, and goals. This is not a healthy disposition to approach life questions. 

After you have followed the first step and taken a deep breath, you should be better positioned to face this question from a position of strength. Do you enjoy trading? How strong is your mental and emotional stability for it? Do you have the stability in your close relationships, children, and significant other to give extra time toward the markets? 

Don’t Give Up

If you answered yes to the previous questions, I hope you find some encouragement to continue your pursuits. You may have an entrepreneurial spirit, one that observes that if you can turn your trading career into success, then you are capable of directing your own time and income. 

I once met a trader who became something of a household name among the CBOE options pits in Chicago. Although he told me that he failed his first two times at trading, finally, he struck a considerable note of success on his third attempt.

Hearing this story made me consider how much we go through to earn our stripes of success. One crucial factor is to keep trying. However, until we find our successful solution, we must maintain discipline and risk management to continue to be able to keep our capital. 

Furthermore, we must continue to take care of ourselves physically, emotionally, and mentally, in addition to the relationships that surround us. 

Feel free to share your experience with overcoming obstacles with the rest of our community. We will all find it interesting to hear how you rose to the challenge. And if you’re thinking about throwing in the towel, maybe you’ll find the motivation you need to keep going from one of our traders!

Until next time, trade well!