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Self-Directed: Make Solitary Trading Work for You

By Robert Colville on May 15, 2015

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What was it that made you try your hand at trading in the first place? Was it for more freedom, more flexibility, or perhaps the pursuit of financial freedom? If so, you’re certainly not alone, but here’s another question: Did you soon discover—like many traders—that all the freedom and isolation wasn’t quite as attractive it seemed going in?

Believe it or not, some of the best traders in the world often struggle with solitary trading, and while you’d probably much rather share other similarities than this one with those elite traders, at least know that solitude is a real problem for traders, and even the best aren’t immune to it.   

Let’s take some strides today, however, to look at solitude in a different light. Rather than dreading it, let’s instead embrace all that’s good about solitary trading, so while it may not always feel so positive and empowering, at least by recognizing the many times that it is, our individual struggles may well become that much fewer and farther between.

Loneliness Can Cause Problems for Traders

Self-Directed: Make Solitary Trading Work for YouuIt’s understandable, really, why so many struggle with solitary trading. There’s nobody else there to bounce new ideas off of, to provide timely validation about existing ideas, or to mandate proper discipline and plan compliance. Consider from the onset, however, that practically each one of these problems caused by solitary trading can be addressed—if not altogether solved—by enlisting the help of a mentor or trading coach.

Also, in this age of technology, many traders also have chat rooms and virtual meet-ups, or Skype with fellow traders to break the monotony and add an element of human interaction they wouldn’t normally have while simply trading at home. Pretty intuitive, afterall, to beat the adverse effects of solitary trading by removing the solitude! But that’s not the only way to go about it…

Try to Embrace What’s Really Great About Solitary Trading

Embrace What's Great About Solitary TradingThose who prefer solitary trading may just need a little pick-me-up every so often when emotional fatigue, frustration, or even boredom creeps in. And needless to say, solitary traders will be left to do this for themselves. But what if it were as simple as embracing any one, or all of the many benefits of solitary trading?

Those benefits might include:

Easy Accountability: Why worry about the potential fallout from your trading decisions when you’re the judge and jury, anyway? Sure, you have (and properly enforce) a reward and punishment system of your own, but you don’t have to answer to board members or angry shareholders every time you suffer a losing trade!

So rather than being hindered by indecision, stay committed to your trading plan, which likely requires only that you act decisively under very specific conditions, and without fearing negative results or consequences.

No Second Guessing from the Outside: Solitary traders may sometimes miss having validation from others before they pull the trigger on new trades, but while fixated only on that, they tend to overlook another force that’s decidedly in their favor: An outright lack of interference, “noise,” or second guessing from outside sources.

Sure, many traders routinely interfere and second guess on their own, but that’s “noise” the solitary trader can work to turn off. Regardless, it’s much easier to trade “quietly” and decisively as a solitary trader as opposed to trading with others or in a more public setting.

Total Control of the Entire Trading Process: It’s all-too-common in most day jobs for new processes and procedures, or some “big new idea” or directive to be sprung on you suddenly, and often at the least-opportune time. You may not even have a say in the matter! But solitary traders will never have to encounter such things, because every trade decision that gets made—and not made—is ultimately theirs.

There’s pressure there, sure, but that’s also empowering, and it means they alone can elect to keep the same procedures in place forever, or change them on a dime, just as long as they have valid reasoning and are prepared to be accountable for the eventual outcome.

Conclusion

In trading, you might say that the good news and bad news are one in the same: It’s all up to you. And while the pressure and solitude does weigh on all of us from time to time, try to remember that solitary trading has plenty of unique benefits, too.

And, when taken the right way, solitary trading can be simple, fulfilling, and empowering, for outside influence and interference can often be minimized—or eliminated entirely—at the sole discretion of the trader. So the next time you feel weighed down by the very nature of solitary trading, try escaping it in the most unlikely of ways: By putting the power of solitary trading right back in your favor.

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Robert Colville

The Lazy Trader is a fund level Forex Trader who trades for no more than ten minutes a day. If you want to learn to trade successfully in his set-and-forget style, have a look at his online trading course

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Robert Colville

The Lazy Trader is a fund level Forex Trader who trades for no more than ten minutes a day. If you want to learn to trade successfully in his set-and-forget style, have a look at his online trading course

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