To win, you must accept the fact that losses are part of the game.
In 1984, Elliott Wave International's founder and president Robert Prechter won the U.S. Trading Championship, setting a new all-time profit record of 444.4% in a monitored real-money options account in 4 months. In the average 4-month contest, over 75% of contestants, mostly professionals, fail to report profits.
In November 1986, in his monthly Elliott Wave Theorist Prechter published a Special Report titled, "What A Trader Really Needs To Be Successful" and gave 5 important tips to would-be market speculators. You can read them now, free (details below) -- but here's Bob's fourth point:
4. Accept the Fact that Losses Are Part of the Game.
There are many denials of reality which automatically disqualify millions of people from joining the ranks of successful speculators. For instance, to moan that "pools," "manipulators," "insiders," "they," "the big boys" or "program trading" (known today as "high-frequency trading" -- Ed.) are to blame for one's losses is a common fault. Anyone who utters such a conviction is doomed before he starts. But my observation, after eleven years "in the business," is that the biggest obstacle to successful speculation is the failure merely even to recognize and accept the simple fact that losses are part of the game, and that they must be accommodated.
The perfect trading system does not exist. Expecting, or even hoping for, perfection is a guarantee of failure. Speculation is akin to batting in baseball. A player hitting .300 is good. A player hitting .400 is great. But even the great player fails to hit 60% of the time! He even strikes out often. But he still earns six figures a year, because although not perfect, he has approached the best that can be achieved. You don't have to be perfect to win in the markets, either; you "merely" have to be better than almost everybody else, and that's hard enough.
Practically speaking, you must include an objective money management system when formulating your trading method in the first place. There are many ways to do it. Some methods use stops. If stops are impractical (such as with options), you may decide to risk only small amounts of total capital at a time. After all is said and done, learning to handle losses will be your greatest triumph.
The last on my list is [the point] I have never heard mentioned before. ...
Read the rest of Prechter's Special Report now, free! All you need is to create a free Club EWI profile. Here's what else you'll learn:
- Why a trading method is a must for your success
- What part discipline plays in your trading success
- How to gain trading experience
Keep reading this free Special Report titled, "What A Trader Really Needs To Be Successful" now -- all you need to do is create a free Club EWI profile.