Noise happens all the time, even to seasoned traders; but, the difference between successful traders and the unsuccessful ones is that disciplined traders remain aligned in body, mind and emotions to access and activate internal resources that help them to stay in the now and focused on what matters most in the trade. When you are out of alignment, you are prone to distorted judgment and distracted thinking – the noise. Now, it is not easy to remain fully available, in the moment for the moment, fully present and in the now of the trade. You must be ever vigilant, that is, self-aware and keeping all of your “parts” working in the same direction and on the same goals. Otherwise, you are most likely going to be conflicted as some parts of you will be attracted as Debra was to the glitter of green that presents as a “fake-out” to the novice trader; and some parts may be confused; while other parts (those that are connected to your A-Game) will attempt to sift through the morass of misrepresented data and provide some sound advice. Fully available means that you are using your strengths, all of them, to prepare, analyze process and execute the trade according to your trade plan, your strategies and your rules. Being in the moment means that you are not unduly concerned about what happened a few moments, a few hours, a few days ago or any past event because it is not relevant to what you are doing right now. In the moment also means that you are not future oriented either, that is, using your thought energy to hope, pray or otherwise kvetch about what the trade “might” do. And, fully present means that you are not thinking about what your spouse, children, or boss is doing or what is going on in the news. In the now means just that, … you are in this moment resonating with the reality of the charts and the price action.
Alignment is when you think, feel, do and talk in a way that is congruent – meaning that you have internal and external consistency. It can also be termed moving in tandem with self, in sync and balanced, also centered and grounded. Alignment can also be described as having integrity and ‘walking your talk’. Alignment is critically important to trading or anything that involves performance, for like a wheel alignment, or the alignment of the moving parts of an engine, if integrity and configuration are compromised, even in minute ways, the machine or system will not perform well and eventually will break down. On the other hand, when alignment is true, optimal performance is all but guaranteed. All parts are moving in the same direction and towards the same goal with precision.
In order to gain alignment you must first become aware of your thoughts, beliefs, values, emotions, identity, and behavior to name a few. These are especially important components that make up the “self.” Awareness is gained through introspection and self-reflection. Also, by writing down your thoughts and emotions you’ll begin to “pull back the layers of the onion” and little by little you will become more aware of your unconscious limiting beliefs, unconscious conversations (yes, you have conversations with yourself that you aren’t aware of) and deep core values. Once you become aware of your “issues,” the thoughts and limiting beliefs and values that drive behaviors that produce unwanted results, you can then begin to change them. You can’t change what you can’t face and you can’t face what you don’t know. So, awareness is required to uncover the faulty data in the subconscious so that you can make changes, and with this awareness you can begin to think, feel, and do in ways that are working together.
One of the tools that serve your awareness is a Thought Journal. It is similar to your Trade Log in that you document the “internal data” that went into the execution of your trade. See, there are two kinds of trade execution data. The “mechanical data” is all the information that has to do with the markets, that is, indicators, price action, news, etc. The “internal data” is everything inside of you that was responsible for pulling the trigger…in other words, your thoughts and emotions. Most traders only document the mechanical data because that is the easiest and less messy to track.
Dealing with thoughts and emotions is difficult for many and they would rather not have to fuss with them. But, if you want to be a disciplined trader getting the results that you want rather than the results you’re currently getting, then you must document and track your internal data; and focus your attention on your intention. In this way you are building your A-Game one level at a time. Soon you’ll be trading like the disciplined trader with a laser precision.
Sourced: Online Trading Academy