Weekly Trading Review – 12th to 16th December
Summary of Performance
A poor week this week.
Basically, over the last 2 weeks I have managed to fuck up my best every quarter. Whilst I still finished profitable, it has gone from a potential excellent end of year to an under average quarter.
What did I do best this week and how I did I do it?
When I was focused, and following my routines, then my quality of trading was good. But it was the fluctuations between a calm and focused state to an unfocused / distracted / angry trader.
More evidence that my process and routines are the key to my profitability.
What did I do badly this week and what lead me to do it?
I would start off each day focused and on track but slowly over the session. I would find anything to everything would start to irritate me, ranging from a no fill trade / minor computer problem to answering the door to a delivery guy and then this would send me off the deep end and lead to some poor decision making in trades.
Why was I so emotionally unstable?
Basically, it is accumulated fatigue. The long hours I put in each week without a decent break has after a while a negative effect to my trading.
The clues to this starting where in my Weekly Trading Review – Well, that escalated quickly! Post.
And a few traders where even kind and helpful to post these comments
Seorge Goros posted this
I believe that similar to the markets our behaviour has a cyclic tendency. Let’s say for simplicity we are either in the zone (happy about our performance, no problems on following up on all our rules, bringing our A-game each and every day, etcetera) or not in the zone (everything just doesn’t seem to work, C-game all over the place).
I wanted to mention the cyclic tendency of human behavior as I think you have dealt with ‘similar’ situations before (http://takingonetradeatatime.com/2016/04/23/weekly-trading-review-17-22-april/#comments and http://takingonetradeatatime.com/2016/06/18/weekly-trading-review-13-17th-june/). I liked your suggested solutions back then, and I think just reading back those posts will give you that little extra kick to get back in following your processes.
And Auh-trader posted this
It’s interesting that you talk about the getting up just a little bit later and it having a knock on effect on pre-market routines – I had this same problem back in the summer, and as you mention it was also a result of accumulated fatigue. I found the best solution (for me anyway), was a decent break away from the screens for a few days doing something completely unrelated to trading. Which I think helps to reset and let our subconscious mind deal with all the accumulated information our brains have not yet fully processed.
I attempted to deal with this problem by going to bed earlier and taking regular breaks.
But this has not helped.
I think the problem, is that once I reach this stage it is too late and more drastic action needs to be taken.
Why did I let myself get so fatigued?
My back ground as a sailor, has instilled a habit of hard work, and an ability to keep pushing though limits. Whilst this is handy skill, I am finding it has negative effects which I have not considered. That whilst racing, there will be an end to the race or on the longer races that take more than 20 days there are periods to catch up on sleep.
I cannot maintain this work rate constantly and retain the same amount of focus. Whilst I take breaks about every 4 months to spend time with the family etc. It is now becoming obvious that these breaks are too far apart to help.
Looking back through my posts and trading journals, it become obvious that about every 3 months, my performance drops till I take a break.
And it is also obvious then when I get to this stage the solutions I put in place are feck all use.
It is not enough to just to be the hard worker in the room, I need to work smarter. In the end, it is all about the results.
I need to have something in place to ensure that I do not get to the over fatigue stage.
It reminds me of physical training. The only solution to over training is to a take a break, and the more over trained one is the long the break. The key is not to get to over trained. The system I used, was that every six weeks I used do a light week of training.
Therefore, starting from the first day of trading next year. I will implement the following
Every sixth week, I will do a light week of trading.
Where I will take one complete day off from trading.
Where I will catch up on sleep and do something totally non-related to trading.
I will call an end to sessions that are not productive. Quite often I can tell that the AM or PM session is not conducive for my edge, instead of sitting there using that to get more screen time. I will do some else for that session.
If I have 2 limit down days with a space of six trading days, then I will take a complete day off from trading.
I will also look at going back to do some side consultancy on the racing front. As this was interesting and the change was as good as a break.