I implemented my militaristic approach this week and the change in my attitude was massive.
I don't recall having ever been more focused on the task at hand in my trading. Because of that I was able to, in nearly every case, take setups without hesitation, fear, regret, etc.
In that regard this approach has been extraordinarily beneficial for me.
I'm realizing that most people don't understand why I'm doing what I'm doing.
But what I have learned about myself, about the market, and about what trading isn't, is becoming of such astounding value to me that I wouldn't trade this experience for anything in the world.
How my method will perform going into the future is still highly questionable due to the lack of duration (91 trades so far), but regardless, I have made more progress as a trader in the past 4 weeks than I have in most of my years.
At this point I am taming the desire to look for a way to improve my method because the experience itself is where I'm profiting. However, this exercise of trading the same method over and over and over and over again is actually allowing me to see the market doing what it does over and over and over again. And I have little doubt that as I continue on I will gain clearer understandings of what I might do to improve how I interact with it.
The bottom line is that I'm seeing trading – the whole thing – in such a different way now that it's difficult to put into words.
I'm nearing my 100th trade – 50 or so trades after I made the minor target modification.
EDIT: Originally I hadn't planned to make any changes to my method, but after looking at my stats, and with the primary objective of my development in mind, I've decided to make another change on the day following the day that I hit 100 trades: I'm going to add a second contract and use two targets.
The stats for my current target are showing a 15% greater profit than the target I was using for the first 50 trades, but with a 96% retention of win rate.
So I'm going to go back to my original target for the first car and use the target I'm currently using for the second car.
This will have a few implications for my trading.
- First, the mechanical implication: It will mean that I will have more to keep up with while working orders. There are situations when the first target has been reached and another setup forms before the second target level has been hit. So there will be times when I'll still have the second contract on when I'm entering a new position. This will likely result in some errors while I learn how to manipulate the order entry platform and deal with various scenarios that occur.
- Second, the risk management implication: By using two contracts, my losses on each losing trade will double. It will be necessary to effectively double my risk tolerance parameters. The hopeful offset will be the larger potential profits generated over time.
- Third, the psychological implication: My biggest reason for hesitating to do this is that my drawdown numbers are going to increase. Bigger per-trade losses, bigger daily losses, and larger drawdowns are not going to be easy for me to stomach. Period.
The interesting thing to note here is that I'm making a change that should improve my profitability, but it doesn't have anything to do with modifying the setup I'm taking for every trade.
And so the training continues.
A look at the stats
My expectancy still appears to be waning. Maybe it's a natural effect of insufficient data thus far. Or maybe it's an accurate reflection of the state of my method right now. I still need more time and experience in order to understand how I should be interpreting this.
I'm posting my weekly stats again this week. I've changed them a bit to reflect $/Day over all days (running) rather than on a weekly basis.