My name is Sow. I founded this company because like many traders out there I failed a number of times at trading financial markets.
Each time I failed, it hurt like hell. But each and every time I learned something about myself. I learned about why I failed, but more importantly – what the real reason for the failure was.
I’d like to share with you my story and why I created the Trading Consistently Journal.
At the end of the global financial crisis I decided that I had enough of others managing funds for me. I saw a string of major losses of my families investments and no fund manager wanted to even talk to me let alone answer why they lost so much.
I realized I needed to understand the markets for myself.
I had only recently become unemployed and desperate to look for some decent paying work. I was applying for jobs but at the time nothing eventuated.
So one fateful day – a British man cold called me to try and convince me to invest in his Gold traders fund. He made trading sound so easy, and with such a high potential for profit. I knew I needed to understand this for myself so told him I wasn’t interested while I instantly started searching on-line for tutorials about trading.
It wasn’t long until I came across the seemingly unlimited profit potential of the Forex market. It seemed really easy to trade – just trade with the trend, right? I instantly opened an account with a Forex broker and placed my first demo trade.
It turned into a profit of $700 in just a few hours.
“This is incredible” I thought, not even realizing the mammoth leveraged trade I had just participated in. For the little ‘work’ I did it seemed to be ‘easy money’.
“Now if only I can do that everyday!” is what I thought. So I quickly started devouring as much online content as possible. Within two months I thought I knew it all – I just needed a few indicators on a chart to tell me when to buy and sell and then I’m set and ready, right?
I threw $3000 of my money into a live account and started trading with live money. Why didn’t I find this earlier? I made $600 real cash on my first trade. This was easy. But I wanted more.
I traded bigger amounts – 2 lots then 3. I made a few small losses, but I was unstoppable. I made back my losses quickly and was in profit.
And then I entered a single most important trade – GBPJPY for two lots. It initially went against me, but I held on the loss because “so many in the past went to profit, its only about time this turns around”. I even “hedged” my position because I wanted to maintain my balance until the markets came back around (geez, what a stupid idea). However, in the proceeding weeks the GBPJPY dropped by over 500 pips. The volatility was so great that even my hedged position didn’t hold.
I was facing a margin call of my account. To prevent this, I added more funds. Then even more. But it was no use, the currency kept dropping.
Then, in a moment, it was all over. Over $4500 gone.
My heart sank, my hands we’re shaking, I was confused and couldn’t understand what I did wrong. I spent weeks trying to piece myself back together. It was the most I had ever lost. Anywhere. I was only 22 years old.
I blamed my trading system for failing me and decided to look further. I found more – alot more. For the next three years I would dabble in all sorts of technical/fundamental trading strategies. I would read countless books and download limitless indicators, oscillators & automated strategies to predict the market.
I spent countless dollars to find a strategy that worked. Some of them worked, but only initially. The system would almost always stop working after some time. Or so I thought. As soon as I lost a few trades I would give up on that strategy and find something else. I started not trusting my particular strategy and always used my own ‘discretion’ (ie. another word for never trading consistently).
I never had a systematic method to approach the market. I also traded multiple strategies at the same time. For any that I wasn’t ‘feeling’ due to a few losers I would cut off my list and find something else. This went on and on, and on, and on. That is, until I found my mentor.
Then one day I found my mentor, and he was the real deal – a proven multi million dollar trader.
The first thing he ever did was give me a set of rules – a checklist to evaluate and rank any trade I was considering taking. I found this process incredibly long and boring but I needed it.
My trading was sloppy. I would follow a system correctly for the first few times, then as soon as I made a single loss I would modify my system to try and ‘prevent’ that mistake. At the time I never appreciated the fact that you need a large sample of trades to understand even if a system is profitable.
So as months went by, my mentor would keep showing me my mistakes, reaffirming that my discipline was off. He would expose my flawed psychology trade after trade and help me truly understand what I was doing wrong. And a lot of it was based on my psychology and discipline. The more I filled in my journal, the more I could see I kept repeating the same mistakes.
Why was I making the same mistakes? It was my belief systems that needed to change.
So after many months of soul searching, I found the answer to re-frame my limiting beliefs. The first was to understand that I shouldn’t call any trade as a ‘loss’ – we associate too much negativity to this word. It brings up emotions of failure and shame. Rather, we refer to it as simply a ‘business expense’. (Why? I explain this further to our email subscribers.)
I found more and more beliefs that I needed to re-frame. I found new ways to look at the problem and I kept exposing myself to these aspects, continuously, for at least 30 days each.
After time, I got very good at managing my emotions when trading. I just followed my strategy in a consistent manner and trading was no longer a stressful experience. My mentor helped me to expose these beliefs that was holding me back, and I changed them. Losses didn’t feel as painful anymore. Trading was easy.
Once I traded with discipline I finally became consistently profitable.
Sure, a good strategy helps, but even the best strategy doesn’t mean you’ll be profitable without following it in a consistent manner.
Once I discovered this ‘secret’ I went back and traded some strategies I used to trade in the past, and then, like magic, they we’re profitable too.
Then I started helping other struggling traders, helping them realize what’s holding them back, and thats when I realized I needed to do something about this for the entire trading community.
The rest, as they say, is history.
EDIT: I’ve finally decided to release my last year’s return. You can read about it here – My 2014 trading result.