Tag Archives: Mindset

Step Back and Reassess

 

Let's start with a daily chart to get some "bigger picture" context…

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

And now down to the trading timeframe…

<image: Step back and Reassess>

A little side note regarding the entry: While it may not be immediately obvious, this trade is a variation on the YTC Price Action Trader PB Setup. The pullback is all occurring within the one single TTF candle (in this case the green one prior to entry). While that is not ideal and we would prefer to see an actual pullback of at least 2 or 3 candles on the TTF, the fact remains that in an opening momentum drive this is often all you will get. So we either miss out entirely, or adapt. In an opening drive, I'll be looking to the LTF data for the first pullback. Everything else (eg. LWP entry timing) is as per normal.

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

<image: Step back and Reassess>

If you've lost all feel for what is happening in the chart…

(1) Step back.

(2) Define the edges of the structure.

(3) And wait.

Whatever happens within that no-trade zone, is none of your concern.

Let it break and then reassess.

Only then, if the market structure and price movement makes sense, is it game on.

Assess the trend structure. Project it forward. Identify your opportunity. And strike!

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Confidence in the Trend

 

I've been discussing this idea for quite a while now. The idea that there is GREAT VALUE in studying your charts post-session to identify the price sequences which offered the best trading conditions. And then… the structural features which might help you identify similar trading conditions next time they occur.

Just last week in our newsletter I shared the following social media post

<image: Where does price move best?>

This is not just something we do for fun.

The exercise has clear and obvious benefits.

One of them being – when I see these patterns set up again they give me CONFIDENCE in the subsequent trend.

The image above gives one of these patterns.

Tuesday's trading gave us another…

Let's start with the 15 minute higher timeframe at the time of session open.

<image: Where does price move best?> 

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?>

<image: Where does price move best?> 

Not all trading conditions are equal. There will be times when the markets provide conditions that best suit our strategy. At these times we need to be focused. We need to know what we want to see to confirm these favourable conditions. And we need to be confident and ready to act decisively when they appear.

And there will be times when the market provides conditions that are less suited to our strategy. At these times we need to step back a little. Be happy to pass on anything that is not screaming out to be traded. If we miss opportunity, so be it. Let it go. And wait for something more favourable.

Post-session study lets you identify those sequences which best suit your style of trading. And to identify the structural features or patterns which might suggest a repeat of these conditions, should they set up again in the future.

For my own personal trading, I perform better in directional markets with nice smooth stable trends. The overnight volatility contraction is one pattern that has me primed and ready for potentially good trading conditions from the open. A pattern which provided me with confidence to TRUST the trend, should it develop from the open.

Are you aware of the conditions which you find most favourable? And the structural features or patterns which might help you identify these conditions again in the future?

If not, you have work to do. Study the charts for those areas where you see that "price moves best". And make sure that next time the market offers similar conditions, you're ready and focused, with the confidence necessary to attack that market opportunity.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Trader Motivation

 

For the first time in maybe a decade I'm not writing a post this week. Not because I lack motivation. But rather, because I've come across an exceptional resource (from Alex Vermeer) that I want to share with you.

The journey to becoming a trader is a long and frustrating one. So the more you can provide yourself with knowledge and skill in maintaining motivation, and in overcoming lapses of motivation, the faster and more effectively you will progress.

If this is an area you feel you can improve, please review and make use of the following information.

Step 1: Read the following two preliminary articles… and implement the advice they offer.

(a) Part one – Things we can do IN GENERAL to reduce procrastination

(b) Part two – Things we can do RIGHT NOW to reduce procrastination

Step 2: Go to the following webpage to download a copy of the summary "How to Get Motivated" poster. Save it and make use of it to trigger changes in behaviour, whenever you need a motivational boost.

Link: https://alexvermeer.com/getmotivated/

Scroll just over half way down the page to find the posters in various sizes.

<image: Trader Motivation>

(Source: https://alexvermeer.com/getmotivated/)

I hope this helps provide you with some clear and actionable plans for beating procrastination and doing the work necessary to make this year the best yet.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

PS. I discovered this great resource through the weekly newsletter provided by Recomendo – https://www.getrevue.co/profile/Recomendo

 


 

Step Back – Define the Edges – and Wait

 

Let's talk about recovery from a poor start to a trading session.

Like this one…

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

So here's the plan in three stages…

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

<image: Step Back - Define the Edges - and Wait>

Whenever you step away from a chart and miss a sequence of price action, you can almost always look back at it with hindsight and see opportunity that you could have taken.

Ignore it.

It wasn't yours to take.

When you've started a session poorly and have struggled to get in sync with the price movement, your job is to step back and clear your mind. Any opportunity you miss during that period of recovery is irrelevant. Let it go.

Step back. Clear your mind.

Define the edges of the structure which caused you problems.

And then wait until price has broken that structure and the market has shown you the directional bias.

Only then is it time to trade.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Do NOT Make the Same Mistake Three Times

 

Ideally, you won't make the same mistake two times.

But it happens.

So here's an idea.

Use that second occurrence as a trigger to INCREASE AWARENESS and FOCUS.

And make absolutely certain that you do NOT make the same mistake a third time.

Clearly there is something wrong with your execution or decision making. Make this a new short-term priority. Two times is enough. Do not accept a third.

And if you do get a third… banish yourself to the Sin Bin for a short while.

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

Let's drop down to the Trading Timeframe chart:

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

Reference: CPB Setup

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

That's now two mistakes.

It's time to get angry. Time to focus. Time to vow to NOT make the same mistake three times.

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

Reference: BOF and BPB Setups

<image: Do NOT make the same mistake 3 times>

Do NOT make the same mistake three times.

Use the second occurrence as a trigger to INCREASE AWARENESS and FOCUS.

And make absolutely certain that you do NOT make the same mistake a third time.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Because Sometimes you want to Smash the Damn Keyboard!

 

Yes, sometimes you do want to smash the damn keyboard!

But while it might feel good for a short while, that kind of mindset does little to help your trading.

So let's talk mindset. And specifically, one little tip that can help you quickly get back in the right frame of mind. Focused and ready to trade again.

Let's start with a higher timeframe 30 minute chart to get some bigger picture context…

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

So now let's drop to the Trading Timeframe (1 minute chart)…

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

Reference: The YTC Price Action Trader Principles of Future Trend Direction – Vol 2, Ch 3, Section 3.3.3, Page 145-153

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

You know those times when you just KNOW that you should exit… you just KNOW that the edge is gone… and you ignore it!

They never seem to work, do they!

Ok… I'm not at the "MUST SMASH KEYBOARD" stage.

I've played this game long enough that individual trade results don't worry me.

But I'm no robot. There is still frustration.

Not at the trade. But rather at my pre-session decision of "Hey, you know what I should do. I should work on holding trades longer. I think I've been cutting them too short too often lately!"

Really?

What is with that?

Changes in process are NOT made like this.

I have no doubt that my trade management is somewhat shifting in recent years to shorter holds and more of a "get out, get back in " style. But if I'm doubting that this is the most suitable approach, then any decision to shift back needs to be more than a simple pre-session decision.

It needs planning.

  • Do the stats confirm that a more passive style would provide greater edge? Or not?
  • Under what circumstances should I blindly hold till the target, regardless of any feelings that the edge is gone?
  • And when should I instead trust my intuition and get out?
  • Can I possibly "live test" both options, for comparison purposes over a month or two? Normal trading on NQ, but simultaneously trading on the micro MNQ contracts with a longer hold. Run both in parallel, as best I can, to compare performance over a period of time.

 

So while I'm not quite at the smashing keyboard stage, I am feeling frustrated.

And I promised you a tip on how to quickly get rid of that frustration and return to a more effective mindset.

Here's something I've been using for a little while. And quite liking.

(1) Allow yourself permission to be frustrated. Big time! Let it all out.

(2) But ONLY for the next trading-timeframe candle.

(3) Then it's game on. Back to the charts.

I want you to exaggerate step one. Vent. Curse. Yell. Shout. Let it all out.

But only for the next trading-timeframe candle.

Then it's game on. Back to the charts.

Give it a try. It's actually kind of fun. And perhaps that's why it's effective.

The quality of your upcoming trade decisions depends (to some degree) on the quality of your mindset. Frustration won't help. So let that frustration out. And then get your mind back on the job.

<image: Overcoming frustration and quickly regaining focus>

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Pre-Accept All Possible Losses

 

Last week we discussed a simple technique that helps keep my mindset focused on the price action, rather than on my P&L, after suffering a trade loss.

<image: Pre-Accept All Possible Losses>

You'll find last week's article here if you missed it – http://yourtradingcoach.com/trader/its-how-you-choose-to-react-that-makes-all-the-difference/

So this week… I want to go a little deeper.

Because there is something that needs to be in place BEFORE this technique is applied, if I really want to gain maximum benefit from its use.

A belief system.

At the core of my approach to engaging and acting in the markets.

And that is…

Accept all possible losses before entering the battle!

We have talked about pre-acceptance of individual trade risk before – http://yourtradingcoach.com/trader/pre-acceptance-of-trade-risk/

But today's idea goes well beyond that.

It is about ALL possible losses.

It is about establishing a mindset during pre-session preparation, before the market is open, where I am completely at ease with the idea of MULTIPLE trade losses and closing out the day at the maximum loss limit.

Complete acceptance!

Of all possible losses.

This is the first of six parts of Richard McCall's ACTION Plan, from "The Way of the Warrior-Trader", for developing an effective performance mindset. I highly recommend this book if you're into the idea of applying lessons from samurai philosophy to the trading arena. And of course to get the final five parts of his ACTION Plan.

Accept all possible losses before entering the battle!

In fact, I take it a little beyond acceptance.

I EXPECT it.

It's like acknowledging that the default future is for a full session loss… decreed by the Trading Gods as inevitable unless I can demonstrate sufficient skill to prevent it.

Most traders operate like this:

<image: Pre-Accept All Possible Losses>

And the result is performance anxiety, doubt, hesitation, FOMO and all myriad of other problems.

My plan is to operate like this:

<image: Pre-Accept All Possible Losses>

This doesn't mean I want to end in drawdown. I will do everything in my power to defy the Trading Gods and finish the day somewhere to the right of that line.

It simply means that I'm absolutely fine with the day ending at a complete loss. I've pre-considered the outcome. And accepted that this is something I can manage. Something I can survive. And something that I can overcome.

<image: Pre-Accept All Possible Losses>

Maybe it's just me? Maybe I'm wired a bit strange?

But I don't think so.

If you struggle with the idea of loss, maybe you need to reconsider your relationship to risk. And maybe you could give this a try. I believe it helps me. Maybe it will help you too.

Pre-session… I cast my mind forward several hours and imagine a full session loss. How does that feel? Can I accept that?

If not, then I have no business trading today.

But if I can accept this outcome, then it's game on. Because while the Trading Gods might be planning a full session loss, I'll be damned if I'm going to go there without a fight.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

It’s How You Choose To React That Makes All The Difference

 

I love it when we can start off a session with a nice winner.

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

It would be nice to always start off a session with a winner.

But that's not how this works. You WILL start off some days with a losing trade.

And it's how you choose to react that makes all the difference.

You have two primary options:

1. You can take the negative path. The path where you are not in control. The victim mindset where you personalise the loss and make it all about you. "Here we go again. I'm such a loser."

2. You can take the positive path. The path where you remain in control. The mindset where you take the loss as information and use it to drive yourself to higher levels of performance.

The first will increase the likelihood of poor decision making in the next trade sequence.

The second will heighten your level of focus and increase the likelihood of quality decisions and actions.

You do have a choice. And while your subconscious reaction will at times tip you towards a negative outcome, this is a skill which can be developed and improved over time.

Yes, how you react to a setback IS a skill. And you can improve it.

I want to share with you today one technique that I have found useful in shifting my reaction away from the negative and more towards the positive.

It's an initial and immediate conscious recognition of respect for my opponent (the market).

A little smile, a nod, a tip of my hat.

It takes the focus off me. And onto the market.

In a sporting context, it's a bit like pitching a ball to a much younger kid, who not only connects with it but smashes it out of the park. You're not getting down on yourself. Instead, there's a smile. And a nod of the head. And a "Damn! This kid's got some skills!". There is sudden, increased respect. And motivation to get yourself back into the game with increased focus and awareness.

In a market context, you've just taken a loss. Get the focus off yourself and onto the market, through a conscious recognition of respect for your opponent.

Smile. Nod your head. "Damn! Nicely done. I'll give you that one!".

And then focus. There are more trades coming and they need your full attention.

Give it a try.

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

<image: It's how you choose to react that makes all the difference>

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

The Hardest Trade

 

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

What do we do here?

Well there's not a lot we can do. It's missed opportunity.

And yes, I know that with hindsight we can look at the lower timeframes and find ways we "could" have got in. But we're not hindsight traders!

It's missed opportunity. It's gone. And our job is now to get on with the business of being a trader.

We've covered this scenario before.

See here for example, where we discussed an effective mindset hack through affirming – "It was never mine to take. If it was, I would have taken it. Let it go!"

So I did this.

I let it go.

I took a quick walk and cleared my head. And came back to the screens.

But let's be realistic here.

This next trade… is NOT going to be easy.

The first trade after missed opportunity can be one of the hardest trades.

The last thing I want to do is get smashed twice. Following up the missed opportunity with a losing trade.

I know… this shouldn't be any concern… every trade is independent and our edge plays out over a series of trades!

But I'm human… and even having carried out my regroup & focus routines… I recognised residual emotion.

So what to do?

Here were my actions:

1. Extend the break – NO TRADING. Let this whole price swing play out with no intentions to trade.

2. Use this time to absorb myself in the price movement. Watch and feel the bullish and bearish pressure play out within each candle.

3. When this price swing is complete AND I feel in sync with the price movement, it's GAME ON. Define the new trend structure. Project it forward. And seek the next trade opportunity.

The intent here is to get myself "out of my own head" and focused back on the price movement.

<image: The hardest trade>

Be careful in the pullback from here. Initial strength in the rally was news driven. But note how it weakened into the top of the swing. YTC PAT readers – this is a Second Principle scenario. Not First Principle. Be patient here.

And if it goes too deep, consider the possibility of this eventually transitioning into a sideways trend.

Until then though, I'm still looking for buy opportunity for continuation higher.

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

<image: The hardest trade>

Well done to anyone who might have traded something like an opening range breakout strategy, off the first 5 minute candle. You got a home run trade today.

For me though – it's one of those days with missed opportunity.

That happens. It's part of the game.

What is important though, is how we respond.

Take a break. Remind yourself – "Let it go. It wasn't mine to catch. If it was, I would have caught it."

And if there is still residual emotion, just watch and wait and let the next swing (or two or three) play out. There is no hurry to trade. Absorb yourself in the price movement. And then… when the structure becomes clear and you feel in sync with the price movement… only then is it time to trade.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs