They say that good things come to those who wait and to those who adapt to this simple trick I’ll show you below.
But have you ever waited for the perfect setup … then waited and waited?
Patience is important as a trader. But if you want to make the most of the opportunities that come your way, you’ve got to keep an open mind.
The market won’t bend to your will. It will rarely (if ever) send you the exact play you’re looking for. Instead, you’ve got to listen to the market, keep an eye on things, and adjust your plans based on what you see.
Recently, I’m noticing that some of my students are struggling with this … and I want to talk about why it’s SO important to keep an open mind as a trader.
Table of Contents
Are You Missing Out?
Remember that you can’t control what happens in the markets, or in life, all we can do is control your work ethic & your preparation!
— Timothy Sykes (@timothysykes) October 6, 2019
As a teacher, one of my biggest goals is to help my students learn to think for themselves. This is super important, because to be able to adapt to the market, you have to be self-sufficient.
But sometimes, traders get into a rut. They get too stuck in their methods and aren’t open to the natural evolution of the market.
For instance, say that you’re looking at first green day setups. If you’re too caught up in looking for specifics, like stocks that fall into a specific price range, you could be missing all sorts of opportunities.
Listen to the Market
Trading isn’t like fast food. You can’t customize your burger or add fries. You’ve got to be open to the variations that the market is presenting.
To be clear: I am NOT saying you should stop looking for perfect setups.
Profit.ly user asfricksrs responded to a recent Mark Croock webinar with key traits of successful trading:
“humble, patient, discipline, protect, protect, protect, wait for the right setups, ty Mark for reminding me I am not missing any plays.”
However, you need to be open to the fact that like in life, trading opportunities are sometimes slightly different from how you might think they’ll be.
So yes: look for your ideal setup.
But at the same time, don’t ignore what the market is telling you.
The Market Evolves … Can You Adapt?
You can’t make the market do what you want. You also can’t count on a setup to continue working the same way forever.
There are so so many #OTC plays right now. #SPY may be down but penny stocks are hot! #CVSI #WCVC #CLSI #SPNV #UNRG #GTXO Thank you @timothysykes @traderkylec @Jackaroo_Trades @Dom_Mastro10 @MikeHuddie for telling me at the #TISummit to change my focus! pic.twitter.com/dV4Ql3nSOM
— Jonathan Peck (@RouxBourbon) October 3, 2019
For example: lately, first green day stocks have been very hot. But this trend has been shape-shifting.
Lately, there hasn’t been much action with higher-priced ($2, $3, $4, $5) first green day stocks.
However, there HAS been plenty of action with lower-priced stocks. All the best recent first green day stocks lately for the past few weeks have all been very low priced — under $1.00 or even under 50 cents per share.
If you’ve made the decision that you’re the type of trader who doesn’t trade stocks under $1 per share, this means that you’re missing out on some killer opportunities.
Or as Profit.ly user amili2046 says:
“Analyze, refine, adapt! Analyze, refine, adapt! Analyze, refine, adapt! Analyze, refine, adapt! Analyze, refine, adapt!”
Is Your Broker to Blame?
If you have the wrong broker, even if they’re commission-free, you could be missing out on opportunities.
Many brokers don’t let you trade low-priced stocks … and that means missed opportunities! Even if your broker is commission-free, if they don’t offer you access to the hottest plays right now, then you’re missing out.
— Timothy Sykes (@timothysykes) October 4, 2019
I’ve talked about it in the past: E-trade and Interactive Brokers are some of my personal favorites. Read this post I wrote about what I think are the top online brokerages for beginners and day traders.
I usually use E-trade for stocks under $1 per share, and Interactive Brokers for higher-priced ones, or stocks where I’m buying fewer shares.
These are my favorites because they have the most availability with low-priced stocks.
Choose your broker with care, because the wrong broker could be cutting into your trading opportunities.
Get In Tune With the Market
To stay relevant as a trader, you have to get in tune with the market and in tune with yourself.
The more patterns you become familiar with, the more patterns you learn, the more you’ll be able to recognize them in the future.
If you’re looking for a pattern that you want to see versus what’s actually there, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
The market will tell you what’s hot and what’s not if you observe it. Are you listening?
Here are some tips for getting and staying in tune:
Follow the Rules
It’s understandable if you get pissed off after a big loss. But can you learn from it? If not, then you’re setting yourself up for even more losses in the future.
I don’t know everything. I make mistakes as a trader. But I’ve also learned a lot of great lessons in my 20+ years of trading. And I know that if you break the rules over and over … you’ll probably lose more than you need to.
My Trading Challenge focuses on helping you learn the key mechanics and rules of trading so that you can be nimble and think for yourself in the ever-changing market. I urge my students to LEARN and PRACTICE, like this:
I have been in the challenge for 2 weeks. I have studied 10 dvds. today was first paper trade. $ttnp. in at on late day break of hod .41 out at .48. Thanks for the education so far @timothysykes I hope to turn these into real trades soon.
— Scott Schmitz (@scottieschmitz1) October 4, 2019
Are you up to the Challenge?
Look at the Big Picture
You can’t just look at the short-term dollar gains and losses — especially as a newbie.
Stay committed to your longterm goals every day and remember that big things have small beginnings so just take 1 step at a time!
— Timothy Sykes (@timothysykes) October 7, 2019
Honestly, your focus shouldn’t be on money, but on learning.
You should be trading with a small account at first so that losses are negligible. Yes, gains will be negligible too, at first. But you can scale up, and over time, that’s the safest way to grow your account.
Stay Focused, But Be Flexible
Focus on what you’re good at … and what the market is trying to tell you. It’s a balance.
Do not just focus on what you’re good at if the market is telling you something different.
As Profit.ly user kylecw2 wrote,
“as you get better understanding the setups and patterns that work best for you, you’ll learn to know which tickers are going to bring you the best odds and profits. I know what setups bring me the most money therefore they are the priority. If you don’t know this about your trading yet I suggest you look to see where your biggest winners are from and start tracking that setup and see if its repeatable.”
Have a Repertoire
All told, I might have less than a dozen go-to patterns and key setups that I rotate through when the markets are working.
Right now the pattern that’s working the best is first green days on low-priced stocks. Sometimes it’s overnight but sometimes not. Sometimes it involves holding ‘til the last hour of the first green day and selling into the close.
To sum it up? If you want to stay relevant as a trader, you’ve got to keep an open mind. This means you have to:
- Adapt to the market.
- NOT be narrow-minded.
- Test and try to find what works for you.
- Look at what’s working in the market.
No, it’s not an exact science. You’ll have to experiment a lot and keep learning from your successes and failures. That’s the process of trading!
Will you use these tips to help you keep an open mind as a trader? Got any suggestions on other ways to stay open-minded? Leave a comment and share your thoughts. I love hearing from my readers.