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I was a day trader for many years and it almost killed me. I made money by making profits on my own money and also taking a percentage of the profits for the people I traded for.
I did this from to I learned about day trading but I also learned a lot about myself and what I was good at, what I was horrible at, and what I was psychotic at. Things that had nothing to do with day trading. Day trading is the best job in the world on the days you make money. You make a trade, then maybe 20 minutes later you are out of the trade with a profit, and for the rest of the day you think about how much money you made.
I would make a trade, it would go against me, and then I wanted my heart to stop so my blood would stop thumping so loudly. All of these lessons I will certainly use today, many years after I stopped day trading. This applies not just to trading but everything. You could be married for 10 years and the next thing you know you are divorced and you would not have predicted that.
You could be healthy all your life and drink your vegetables and exercise and reduce stress, and a year later you could be dead from cancer. You can always seek to increase the odds in your favor. But certainly a path to unhappiness is thinking the future can be predicted and controlled.
A hundred percent of opportunities in life are created because people are uncertain about almost everything in their lives. We are constantly trying to close the enormous gap between the things we are certain about and the things we are uncertain about, and almost every invention, product, Internet service, book, whatever has been created to help us close that gap.
Sometimes this is hard. If your husband betrays and leaves you, you often feel like crawling on the floor and burning all the self-help books. You can say it something inside of yourself. Some people take too many risks and they go bankrupt.
This happened to me. But then I would take big losses and that would wipe out all my profits. The key is that you can take larger and larger risks if you work on better and better ways to deal with those risks. For instance, I might be able to risk marrying someone if I know she is not a hard-core drug addict who regularly betrays the people she is close to.
I can risk driving without a license if I always stay below the speed limit I know this is a stupid risk, but still. How can I get that job? When I was raising money to day trade, I probably contacted over 1, people. When I was starting an Internet business I started over a dozen Internet businesses and watched all of them fail but one. When I was trying to sell my Internet business I contacted over a dozen companies although Google broke my heart — damn you Google!
When I wanted to get married, I went on lots of dates. She would only go to tea with guys. Within the first 20 seconds you know if you are attracted. So keep it to a tea. But this is just a mental bias. Say no to it. Day trading pulls everything out of you. It sucks the soul out of your body, blends it up, and then explodes. So you have to take care of yourself.
And obviously, this applies to everything else in life. Every day, what small thing can you do to become a slightly better you? The only way to survive is to laugh. Guy makes a trade. The market goes against him. And then he loses all his money and goes crazy. The market is never crazy. The world is never crazy. And I will go so far as to say that your girlfriend who just lied to you about where she spent the night is not crazy.
I only care about you. Good and bad days happen. But life is about a billion little moments that add up to all the things around you.
If you let one of those moments have too much control then you are bound to be mostly miserable. I was mostly miserable during the period I was day trading. I let that aspect of my life take control. So I stopped focusing on being a good husband, a good father, a good friend, a good anything.
I would have nightmares. I would lose sleep. I would wake up many mornings and go to the church across the street so I could be by myself and pray. What would I pray? So what makes anyone think they will have an edge? How many people listen to me? Because people are sick of their lives, their relationships, their jobs, and all the lies that have been told to them ever since they learned how to walk. Day trading is the dream. You can make enough money to not care.
To do it from anywhere. Most people think they have that one special something that will make it work for them. You can skip right to the being happy part. You can skip right to being free. But we never learned that. We were taught we had to do something first to earn freedom.
We were taught that suffering was the currency to buy happiness. Okay, go do it. Then cry about it. Then curse the craziness. None of that will make you happy. Then read this blog post again. Not because it will make you happy. But because I like when people read my posts. I was a day trader for many years, and it almost killed me.
I did it for years, though, because I was unemployable in every other way. Everyone thinks they can. B Hope is not a strategy. I hope that every day my life goes perfectly. C Uncertainty is your best friend. D Taking risks versus reducing risk. You have to decide every moment if this is the situation you want to be in. All of my other constituencies went to hell. Nobody answered my prayers. They want freedom from the BS.