Who says it’s easy to be a trader?
In 2007, I remember sitting down in my office, across from my friend Greg, and realizing that I was losing $30,000 on a Swiss franc trade. It happened again in 2010, except that time I was down $50,000.
In 2004, I lost $50,000 on the U.S. dollar against the Japanese yen in three seconds.
That’s no joke.
Each time, regardless of the size of the loss, it wasn’t so much the money that bothered me, but the fact that I was unprepared for it.
It hurt; it punched me in the gut. It knocked the wind out of me.
Anybody that goes through something like that has a choice. It’s either — “I’m going to give up” — or it’s — “I’m going to change tactics and try again.”
Some people will go home and lie to their family about what happened, glossing over what really occurred.
That’s giving up.
And it’s not uncommon.
A lot of people will give up when their back is against the wall. The emotion of it all can be so overwhelming that they will simply give in to it. I know. I’ve been there.
But the question is really, when this kind of thing happens to you, how do you respond? We’re all going to face some hardships in our lives. That’s guaranteed.
Here how I’ve developed this skill (and it is a skill):
Remember that it’s universal: The framework through which people are successful in life is the same whether we’re talking about trading, or relationships, business, sports, etc. When you are successful at something, you know how to do more than just “do it.” You know how to manage through the difficult circumstances. You know how to grind.
Focus on action: You’re already smart. Being smart is irrelevant. Most of the successful people I know, the ones making $10 million a year or more, are not smart people there. (Don’t tell them I said that.) They’re street smart but they might not know how to spell. But that doesn’t matter. The fact is, what you do and how you do it is more important than how smart you are. It’s not about proving something to someone else. It’s about going out and getting things done.
Work on becoming more resilient, not just “better”: Michael Jordan’s performance in game five of the 1997 NBA Finals against the Utah Jazz, playing at his absolute best through the flu, didn’t just happen. You don’t get there by taking thousands of free throw shots in your driveway. You have to develop yourself into the kind of person who, when your back is against the wall, you rise to the occasion and overcome. It takes mental strength. It takes resiliency. It takes grit. Think about how you’d respond to challenging circumstances, and then work on getting better and stronger.
Because every failure is just one step on the road to becoming successful.
How do you develop that? I just told you how I do it, but this is a very personal process. I’d love to hear how you get over the hump. Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
But enough of the fluffy stuff, let’s talk price. What do you think dictates the price of currency in a $4.5 trillion market? Find out exactly in my latest issue below.