Education Trading Psychology

What Trading Cannot Do For Us


To paraphrase Ms. Rand, the quest for self-esteem is the surest sign of its absence.  A common underlying theme of blog readers who reach out to me is their desperate need for trading success.  They don’t just want to be consistently profitable; they want to be among the elite of the elite.  They proclaim their passion for trading and their complete absorption in finding opportunities to profit.

One question I typically ask is, “What in your life is more important than trading P/L?”  The speed and depth of the answer speaks volumes.  A life wholly dedicated to market P/L is an impoverished existence, a desire to achieve a self-esteem that is otherwise absent.  A common reason for overtrading is the absence of anything else meaningful to be doing.

The overfocus on P/L is an attempt to evade the reality of that absence.  Little wonder we then overreact to losses and extended drawdowns.  That is when we most need a full life to fall back upon.

Trading can make us financially successful, and trading can provide meaningful intellectual challenge and satisfaction.  What trading cannot do for us is substitute for our needs for a full and fulfilling life.  In the Radical Renewal blog book, I emphasize that good trading comes from the soul, not the ego.  Good trading emerges from a mindset of plenty; it cannot bear the burden of our self-esteem.  Mastering volatile markets is easier with a stable life; drawdowns are easier to accept when we profit from many life activities and interests.
Further Reading:

Radical Renewal:  Tools for Leading a Meaningful Life

Notice: ob_end_flush(): failed to send buffer of zlib output compression (1) in /var/www/vhosts/ on line 5420

Notice: ob_end_flush(): failed to send buffer of zlib output compression (1) in /var/www/vhosts/ on line 5420