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Brett Steenbarger Web Seminar
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Brett Steenbarger Web Seminar

by The MoleJune 17, 2014

I’m currently watching a live seminar by Brett Steenbarger who is talking about improving trading performance. I’m posting some of the slides here – feel free to discuss and chime in:

Missed this one but I think we all know the basics of behavioral patterns and how stress can affect your trading.

I would add Revenge and Addiction.

Our trading plan was created in one state of mine – once we shift into actual trading mode we lose this perspective. How often do we find ourselves placing trades and afterward think – what the hell was I thinking? It’s important to realize what ‘sets you off’ – maybe frustrating factor that leads to over trading, maybe anxiety, fatigue, overload – you learn to identify the state of mind that is identified with your worst and best trading.

In exposure methods you learn to de-condition your emotion triggers. This is used in treating anxiety disorders or trauma. We start with the least challenging to the most difficult triggers. Brett controls his breathing rate during coping exercises – he imagines increasingly challenging scenarios while he slows down his body and slows down his mind. The rehearsals over time allow you to control your fight or flight response.

Brett has his students declare their emotional temperature each day. By self analysis you are allowing yourself to pre-empt emotional mistakes and instead active complementary internal states which have been previously practiced via meditation.

Just as negative patterns can be triggered – positive ones can be triggered as well. The question you should ask yourself is: ‘When am I in my zone?” When are you in an open minded place when I’m simply observing – only absorbing what’s coming from the screen. That is usually a very different state than when he’s researching or managing a large position. For Brett that’s a Zen state – it allows him to let the market come to him. The focus is not on eliminating over trading – the focus is on staying in the zone of optimal decision making.

Successful traders all share one thing in common despite different psychological characteristics – they all seek out markets that enforce their positive emotional/analytical skills. Everyone processes information differently – some prefer reading a lot of information, others prefer to observe others and bounce from one person to another. How you trade becomes an expression of who you are. This way you are avoiding emotional disruptions that affect your trading. In order to be consistent in implementing your own strength is to turn best practices into best processes. When we experience emotional well being we process information more deeply and more broadly.

We all make mistakes and if that is your whole life and if you have no other sources of emotional well being then your mood will rise and fall with your trades. Make your trading a performance activity – what am I doing that’s working for me and what am I doing that needs to be improved? That turns ordinary trading into performance training.

By training ourselves under difficult conditions we develop ourselves – and that self development reverberates into other ares of our life. That includes your career and your personal life. We all have certain cognitive and personal strengths. If you want to be successful trading the financial markets you need to improve your personal strengths. Do not try to make yourself into a different person. Instead try to identify what are your best traits and improve on them.

Now the session has been opened to discussion. If you have questions then post them in the comment section and I will ask him.


About The Author
The Mole
Mole created Evil Speculator amidst the chaos of the financial crisis in early August of 2008. His vision for Evil Speculator is a refuge of reason, hands-on trading knowledge, and inspiration for traders of all ages and stripes. You can follow him and his nefarious schemes at the usual social media waterholes.
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