Why do people keep changing their methods?

J Livermore

Active member
Indeed. Despite my many excellent trading attributes I hit just such a period around 1985 ( a few weeks after starting to trade) and it hasn't ended yet, although I'm confident it is just about to.
Please don’t think I’m being nosey but if you shared what you think went wrong with your trading, some of us in this forum could maybe offer some advice.

The bad results you’ve had from all the way back to 1985 sounds like a very long time.
 

peto

Established member
Please don’t think I’m being nosey but if you shared what you think went wrong with your trading, some of us in this forum could maybe offer some advice.

The bad results you’ve had from all the way back to 1985 sounds like a very long time.
That would be very kind.
What went wrong? I over-trade, move my stop to allow space to a "dead cert" which turns out to be a dead-wrong, revenge trade, try to squeeze in one more trade when time is short, trade outside my optimal hours, trade with too small an account (generally just before I blow it again) . Sometimes I trade instruments I am less familiar with, and which carry too high a spread. I get distracted reading T2W when I should be watching my trade. I become over confident after a rare run of successes, and then have a most impressive losing streak just after calculating that with compounding, my winning streak will make me a multi-billionaire by the end of the year.

I look forward to a flood of advice. I suspect the best advice would be to close my trading account and run away to live with the circus or do something more useful with my time. Probably won't happen though.
 

The Cube

Junior member
What went wrong? I over-trade, move my stop to allow space to a "dead cert" which turns out to be a dead-wrong, revenge trade, try to squeeze in one more trade when time is short, trade outside my optimal hours, trade with too small an account (generally just before I blow it again) . Sometimes I trade instruments I am less familiar with, and which carry too high a spread. I get distracted reading T2W when I should be watching my trade. I become over confident after a rare run of successes, and then have a most impressive losing streak just after calculating that with compounding, my winning streak will make me a multi-billionaire by the end of the year.

At least you've identified your weakness(es)............. :)
 

Amazon

Junior member
Could be any or all of the reasons mentioned. Traders are either already prepared with strategies that work under different conditions, or the main reason is usually a clarity on what we are doing. I have met traders that read the markets very clearly at any time, so for them the strategy is always clear, they know what they will do and when, no second thoughts on it.

So most of it comes down to an unsettled mind, where we are still in conflict with the markets at some level. From my own expereince.
 

J Livermore

Active member
That would be very kind.
What went wrong? I over-trade, move my stop to allow space to a "dead cert" which turns out to be a dead-wrong, revenge trade, try to squeeze in one more trade when time is short, trade outside my optimal hours, trade with too small an account (generally just before I blow it again) . Sometimes I trade instruments I am less familiar with, and which carry too high a spread. I get distracted reading T2W when I should be watching my trade. I become over confident after a rare run of successes, and then have a most impressive losing streak just after calculating that with compounding, my winning streak will make me a multi-billionaire by the end of the year.

I look forward to a flood of advice. I suspect the best advice would be to close my trading account and run away to live with the circus or do something more useful with my time. Probably won't happen though.
Without knowing your trading style, time period or markets (I know nothing about currencies for instance) I can only think of general suggestions.

As far as over-trading, slow down and try only one trade at a time and not trade any subsequent trades until the pain / excitement of the loss / win is completely over. You need a fresh, relaxed mind before each trade.

For me, when I trade stocks, I put on a half position with a wide stop and leave it there as long as the stock is acting properly. Then if the stock moves into profit territory, I eventually add the other half of the position, cancel my old stop then put in a new stop for the whole position at break even and watch the trading action from there.

Revenge trading I can’t help you with but you must remember, the market owes you nothing. What you earn you have to get on your own.

When I was day trading stock index futures I had certain hours where I couldn’t pick market direction so I just used discipline to stick to certain hours. Specifically, I couldn’t pick market direction during the open and the close so I stopped trading them.

Without knowing what you are trading I can’t comment on account size but I can suggest to not use leverage.

Try trading only one instrument for a long time and get familiar with its trading personality. Something with moderate to low volatility.

Take a break from T2W when you are ready to get serious about trading again and visit when you need a break from trading. Trading, like a professional athlete, requires you to have no distractions and a focus on what you are doing. Think of the phrase “Singularity of purpose.”

If you feel you are getting overconfident. Take a break from trading until you come back down to Earth :) . There will always be a next trade when you are ready.

Remember, this is only general advice based on what you said. The number of trading rules that traders may wish to adopt can literally fill a book or two.

I hope something I said can help.
 

peto

Established member
I hope something I said can help.
Thank you JL, for your considered, comprehensive and helpful response.

I spreadbet the dax in the morning and the dow in the evening, over the years my timescale has reduced steadily to quickfire scalping, rarely looking for more than 20 points gain. My best results are at the open and the close of each index, so I should stop all trading inbetween. I appreciate the irony that several of the above are directly opposite to some of your advice, but I will take on board your "singularity of purpose" and I think pausing for calm between trades is also good advice, and would help with the "revenge" kicks too.
I had planned to add a few "village idiot " posts to T2W (I'm sure Im not the only one!), but perhaps I will leave it now until I have implemented your new strategy with some success!
 

No_Fear

Newbie
You just need one method to be very successful.

Why do you need 10 methods? Just pick the best performing one out of the 10. The rest are just going to dilute your edge since they are inferior.
 

wmram

Member
I see that there are a lot of people who have been in the market for many years, who have very good and very wide knowledge, they know many trading methods and many of them are really good.

But it's strange that they still keep changing the method they're using, it's obsolete, no, it's because they don't persist in pursuing any method to the end, they just want to experiment and find more because they always doubt their own current method.

And I believe they will stay like that forever and can't be stopped for a lifetime.
In some ways as a trader, you are talking to yourself about yourself. The conversation is specific and impactful. It takes some time to be able to have that conversation; if for no other reason but that you don't have to do things like that in the normal 9 to 5 world. Now that you're having to do it, you're growing and possibly changing the way you think about things. So you are susceptible to changing your approach to trading from time to time.
 

Flink

Junior member
Since the market is dynamic, it won’t be possible to continue trading using the same old practices. In order to have consistent performance, traders will have to keep changing their trading strategies. But, they should practice those strategies in a demo account before using them in the live account to avoid losses.
 
 
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