Do you struggle with your trading and are the results not quite what you hope they would be, but you don’t really know why!?
Would you be surprised if I told you that most traders are not really interested in knowing that they lose money and how they could turn their performance around? This might sound strange, but after having worked with thousands of traders over the years I keep seeing the same destructive patterns that could be corrected easily.
Let’s start with the most important aspect when it comes to understanding your performance: trade review
I am always stunned when I work with a trader who tells me that he does not review his trades and has no way of keeping records. A trader without a review process has zero chances of becoming profitble. On the other hand, a trader with a review process can easily improve his trading. Here are the main points how a trading journal and a review process will change your trading for the better.
#1 Taking responsibility
It all starts here. Most traders do not keep a journal because they don’t want to face their trading. They know deep down that they suck, that their trading is sloppy, have no rules, do not use risk management and just gamble.
It hurts to see that what you call “trading” has actually nothing to do with it and you are just throwing money away by gambling without a structure. Not keeping a trading journal is then a protection mechanism and a trader does not have to face his inabilities.
But if you want to have a chance of becoming profitable, you need to have a journal. You must face your problems. You’ll quickly realize that you need to change your trading and that you need rules and a process.
A trader who accepts this reality and is willing to take responsibility by writing down all his trades is on the right path.
#2 Trade with confidence
Do you sometimes struggle with taking a good looking setup after a losing streak? It is certainly not easy to be confident after a loss, but if you trade without a trading journal and do not know your performance statistics, then it is even harder.
When your trading journal shows you that having 3, 4 or 5 losses in a row is normal and that you have repeatedly had such losing streaks, you can be more confident and not worry all the time. When you know that such streaks will end sooner of later and that your reward:risk ratio will take care of the losses, then you can just move on to the next trade without hesitation.
#3 Understanding losing streaks
Every week I get asked how to get out of a losing streak. The answer is always simple: most of the time, traders are not in a real losing streak and just trade poorly.
A real losing streak is only a losing streak if you have respected your trading rules 100% and did everything correctly during the process. If, on the other hand, you broke your rules (maybe don’t even have rules) and made mistakes, you just traded poorly. And a loss the the outcome you deserve.
A trading journal is a great tool because it allows you to relive your trades once again and when you enter a trade after your trading day, you can objectively look at it and see whether you did everything correcltly or not.
During our trading, we often do not even recognize our mistakes when money is on the line and the price action moves rapidly. If a trader then does not have a journaling routine, he is not going to learn from his mistakes and he will repeat the same bad behavior forever.
#4 Recognize progress
The final piece to the puzzle is that performance review will show you your progress and give you even more confidence.
I have seen it dozens of times that traders make good progress and slowly lose less and even become profitable but they forget where they came from and then get impatient. In our private student forum, I regularly remind traders that they are on the right path when they start losing perspective.
A trading journal will clearly show you your progress and keep you focused on your goal.
I covered a similar concept in my recent article: How to achieve 100% return as a trader
The trading journal
Of course, I will tell you that Edgewonk is the best trading journal. But not only because we have developed it, but also because traders from all around the world agree and use it in their daily trading.
Edgewonk includes everything a journal needs and covers all the performance statistics aspects, but also helps you work on your mental game and improve your trading psychology.
As a little bonus for Tradeciety readers, you can use the code: tradeciety
This will give you a $20 discount on the Edgewonk bundle: Edgewonk.com