Nobody becomes an expert day trader overnight.
Discipline is not learnt in one day. It is honed over months and years of deliberate effort and perseverance.
For most of us, waking up at 5am for a jog is unthinkable, but for those who do it on a daily basis, it’s just second nature to them because they’ve been doing it so often.
Discipline is something that can be learnt, but you have to put in a lot of consistent work into it.
I like the idea of taking baby steps towards learning to trade with discipline.
Start with small, attainable goals.
Aim to accomplish just ONE goal at a time.
For example, for Day 1 all you need to think about is to achieve Goal 1. And for Day 2, just focus on achieving Goal 2. And so on.
After awhile, the aim is to get so used to achieving these goals that they become second nature to you.
Here’s a suggested list of goals you can try to achieve:
- Do not make more than 3 trades in a day. (Based on my own strategy backtest, there are at most 2 or 3 perfect opportunities to trade in a day. Anything more than that, I’m probably taking not-so-optimal trades.)
- Do not trade on a particular day if there are no setups which fit your strategy exactly. (This forces you to not take bad trades.)
- Do not trade in the first 45 minutes of the market. (Some may beg to differ. I prefer not to trade until 1015am as things have generally not gone so well for me.)
- Achieve 20 consecutive trades in which you had followed your strategy perfectly, without compromise. (It is always tempting to take trades which do not fit your strategy perfectly.)
- If you lose 2 trades in a day, just shut down your computer and walk away. You’re done for the day. (You won’t believe how hard this goal was for me to achieve.)
- Do not lose more than 5% of your account in one day. (The 5% figure is my own target. Many others may set a much lower figure than 5%.)
My belief is that by taking these baby steps, you will be on your way to becoming a more disciplined day trader.
I am definitely not there yet. I’m still learning every day and I have a long way to go to being a highly-disciplined day trader.