Markets surely wait for no one. I have always been a believer in the concept - ‘Success comes to those who practice the art of maintaining a routine.’ For someone who has been a part of the stock markets for over fifteen years, I make it a point to follow a routine, a practice when it comes to trading. We have all grown up hearing our mothers and teachers say that one must follow a routine to have a fulfilling life. Having good habits inculcated since my school days has helped me become a successful trader as well as a content human being.
As we grow older and wiser, our affinity toward habit-forming also changes. The choices that one makes such as taking up a hobby, exercising, sleeping on time, and eating well, helps shape people into what they eventually become. A lot of people think that to be a successful trader one needs to have money, contacts, and the analytical skills to read the markets. That’s right, but more than that your habits define your consistent performance and the accuracy of your projections day in and day out.
Today, when the entire world is dealing with the pandemic, one thing that has not stopped is the stock market. It waits for no one! Similarly, life does not wait for anything or anyone. Today it is all about the survival of the fittest. I like to draw synergy between life and the stock market, its resonance is interesting and overwhelming at times. I am often asked how my life has changed before and after COVID-19. Well frankly, it has not changed much for me. My routine remains the same as it has been for the past 15 years with work and life.
I think a trader’s life is all about discipline, punctuality, and patience. Doing things on time has a ripple effect on your life. When you know markets start at 9:30 and close at 3:30, you have no scope to make any changes but work around it. It’s like ‘you snooze you lose!’ Follow the method and discipline that has been taught to you, trade 100 times with that discipline. After that, if you feel it is not working out and resulting in losses, you need to evaluate why is it not working out; is it the indicator and theory that was taught to you or is it yourself? The fact is that you need to practice it at least 100 times and practice it perfectly. Growing up, I would keep going back to the quote by Bruce Lee, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” It is a quote that emphasizes the importance of perfect practice and proficiency.
Dedication and patience are key to your survival in the stock market. If you have had a bad trade, sit, and evaluate where you went wrong. Be honest to yourself. Rectify it and get back to trading the next day with a clean mind and conscious. Also, if you want to become a successful trader, just reading about it is not sufficient. It may keep you inspired and motivated, but to learn the real nuances of trading, you must constantly educate yourself. Attend programs, pick up online courses, listen to expert comments, participate in webinars,and try and get access to all forms of learning. After all of this is done, you must put money on the table and put your learning into practise! I have always believed that being a trader is far more challenging and daunting than being an analyst. Thereafter, trading and learning must go hand in hand. You must revise your notes, strategies, and trading setups at regular intervals. It is like a spiritual discourse – you might know a lot of things but being reminded of the nuances of leading a good life does not hurt!
Lastly, as a trader, having a positive frame of mind is a must. I take each day as a new one and even though I believe in reflecting on my mistakes, the aim is to learn from it and nothave any resentment. My time between the trading hours is completely dedicated to the markets. Being focused throughout that time has helped me grow into a more skilfuland technically sound trader. To all those who aim to enter the world of trading, my recommendation is ‘nurture your skill and passion, educate yourself, and last but not the least – lead a disciplined life.’ This is a tried and tested mantra, not just for a successful career as a stock market trader but also for a successful life.