In today’s S&P ES index futures trading, I had three trades just after the mornings open. They were small, but they add up just the same, +2 ticks, +2 ticks, and +5 ticks for a 2.25 point session. I was being mindful of my first trade of the session as I had gotten those wrong the last two sessions. The last trade was a good setup for much more, but I remembered my plan for today was just to get at least 2 points and end the week with no struggle and a happy ending. That happened and I won’t cry about the continued drop after my last exit. I got what I wanted easily and that was that and stuck to it. The day’s trading session for me below. Follow by an article on “index futures trading”.
Index Futures Trading
Index futures trading has gotten very popular in recent years, but how easy or hard is it? I would be first to say, that successful trading is not easy, but it is possible. It is harder than most people think it is for many reasons.
The technical aspect of actually putting on and taking off trades is going to account of about 20 % of a persons ability to get the job done. The other 80 percent, is going to come from within the trading individuals mental ability to stay on the straight and narrow. What do I mean by this?
Every day trader needs to have written trading rules and plans to follow. That is the first thing that often never gets done, but if you do have a written trading method to follow, the focus is on the technical aspects of the method and that is fine up to a point. You most certainly need to know what makes up a trade and it can not be ambiguous, but needs to be very clear to who ever is looking on. The issue is, almost no one works on the (I believe) 80 percent portion of the equation that is going to help you build your equity long term.
The straight and narrow, is being able to keep yourself in a good mental position to increase your account over the long haul. You could have short term success any time, but if you don’t know how to handle the internal struggles that will come, you will loose it one way or another.
If you have only a one gallon container and you are trying to grow your ability to hold more, of what ever it is, but don’t increase the size of the container, no matter how much you try to put more in your one gallon container, it is just going to overflow and spill out, you need a bigger container.
You need to grow the inner portion of yourself to be able to handle the increase. That is the point. Work on yourself just as much as you spend time in studying the markets. If you don’t, it will spill out and then what do you have?
Many traders have a good idea of what it takes, but for some reason are just not able to put it together, “yet”. That leaves hope which is one of the strongest human emotions, right behind fear. I mention that second word for a reason. Not to be negative, but to bring reality to light. There are many kinds of trading fears that hold many a good trader down. Identifying the those trading fears and getting serious about exposing them to then take action to overcome them is key.
Many have the best intentions, but just don’t know how and continue to struggle. There is a way, but it starts with being mindful of your actions first. You have to know what it is you are doing, what you are thinking, what you are acting out in putting on non method trades that keep you in a state of struggle.
This is the area that is uncomfortable and so it gets pushed away. If you want to get to the next level, look within and then be willing to uncover the mess inside. Only then, are you able to take those issues apart and get to the root of your struggle.
This is the part of day trading that makes it hard. This is the part that no one likes to talk about. This the part that is so much easier to blame anything outside or yourself for the poor results. I know its tough to deal with, but its what needs to happen. You are the one who can change things around, if you want to. If you make excuses, nothing will change. If you do the same things you have always done, nothing will change.
Change comes from the within, by act of your will to do so. Do you want to do well in this business, then ask the hard questions to yourself and break it down. Tear it apart and then rebuild it. I don’t have enough time in this posting to get into detail on how to do that, but I might share more on this subject in the coming week.
Index futures trading is possible, its not easy, but much of its success will depend on you, to have a good trading method that you can follow and then being true to yourself so that you can achieve those dreams and goals.
Best trades to you all, Vince