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Trading Psychology

How to Make Trading Fit Your Lifestyle

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Written by Timothy Sykes
Updated 10/15/2021 11 min read

I’m so grateful for the life I live. I love trading and I love teaching. I find it so fulfilling when I see my students finding success.

I also get to do what I love and travel all over the world. And I love building schools for children through my charity Karmagawa. It truly is a great life.

Trading can offer you so much freedom. You can travel, spend more time with your family, or trade from an office if that’s how you roll. You can do whatever you choose.

Why do I love this job so much? The freedom it gives me to travel the world, teach trading, and give back through my charity Karmagawa.

Study and Trade From Anywhere

It’s a beautiful thing to be able to study and trade from anywhere. For me, that’s the ultimate feeling of freedom.

People get into trading thinking they’ll get rich quick. Yeah, you can make good money trading. But it’s not gonna happen overnight. And it’s not just about how much money you can make. There are tons of professions out there where you can make a lot of money.

A lot of doctors and lawyers make the same amount of money as traders, if not more. But … maybe you don’t get to travel as much. Or you don’t get to spend as much time with your family as you’d like. You don’t get to do whatever you want and still make six or seven figures a year.

They have to put in a lot more time and money into their careers. They pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for their education and give up a decade of their lives to school.

With trading, you still gotta learn. And like I said, it won’t happen overnight. But you can do it on your terms. And you can learn a solid foundation in a few years.

I’ve made lots of money trading.** I’ve bought nice things for myself and my parents. But the freedom that can come with trading is what I love the most. It’s why I’m so passionate about it and teaching it to others so they can live amazing lives too.

[**Please note: my results are not typical. I’ve spent years developing exceptional skills and knowledge. Always remember trading is risky. Never risk more than you can afford.]

Everyone’s Journey Is Different

I love to see students enjoying the freedom that trading can offer. And everyone’s idea of freedom is different.

Some people want to spend more time with their family or their kids. Others want to travel and see the world. Some are fine with staying where they are, but they want to choose their hours.

Check out how these students fit studying and trading into their lives…

@TessaLamping studies while watching her baby. This is pretty awesome, and she loves it.

My student @Hong16891 watches her kids play while she trades from her phone … at the beach.

@InceNY1 loves to study and trade using multiple monitors in his man cave.

It’s pretty amazing to be able to work and study anywhere and make your own schedule. Everyone has their own idea of freedom.

And that’s another great thing about trading. It’s NOT one size fits all…

I Like to Show You What’s Possible

You can decide how and where you like to trade. You don’t have to be mobile or chained to your desk. It’s really up to you.

Personally, I don’t like trading on my phone. I prefer my laptop. But mobile trading will get easier and easier as technology improves. Even with my laptop, I can still trade from places like this…

People tell me, “Oh Tim, you’re so full of it … there’s no Wi-Fi there…”

Yeah, the Wi-Fi was sketchy, but that’s when I use a hot spot. It’s unreal how many closed-minded people there are in this industry. There are literally no excuses. The technology is already available to you. There’s no reason to feel chained to your desk.

Sure, sometimes trading in random places isn’t optimal, but I show you all the crazy places I trade from to show you what’s possible. I want to inspire you. I want you to understand that you really can trade from anywhere.

You Have the Freedom to Choose

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When you’re studying and trying to learn something new, you should do what works best for you. You have the freedom to choose how and where you want to study.

Do you prefer to study in complete silence or do you like some background noise? Do you want to study at the park or beach or do you prefer a quiet, organized office?

Also, everyone has a different learning style. If you learn visually, study charts and watch my video lessons and DVDs.

If you’re a reader, read my book:  “An American Hedge Fund” (get your free copy here). And also read “The Complete Penny Stock Course” by my student Jamil. (I wrote the forward.) Try the audiobook if you learn better that way.

And others learn by doing. If this is your go-to style, try paper trading on StocksToTrade.

This is why I provide all these resources in different formats … So you can choose what works best for your learning style. You should still try all of them though. You may pick up information from one that you missed in another.

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I even offer my Trading Challenge students live webinars weekly, where they can watch me trade live. But I only trade if the pattern sets up right for my trading plan.

When it comes to actually trading, it’s the same as studying. You can choose what works best for you. Different styles and strategies work for different people.

Some students hold stocks overnight, some don’t. Some prefer stocks priced under $1 and some like to trade higher-priced stocks. There’s no right or wrong answer. It’s all about your personal preference.

You Have to Work for It

The freedom to choose where and when you work is great. But one thing you can’t change is that you still have to study and learn a strategy.

Maybe one day, technology will allow you to plug into my brain and download all the information I know. But until then, your only option is to study. Remember: you’re studying for your freedom.

I can’t tell you how many people complain about the number of video lessons and DVDs I make available to everyone. Why are you complaining? You should be grateful. I had to learn by trial and error. And trust me, it wasn’t fun.

Students ask me which DVD or video lesson they should watch. Watch all of them! 

My student Mark Crook watched all my video lessons … three times!

There are no shortcuts. You have to put in the time and dedication. If you don’t want to study, you can join the 90% of traders who fail because they don’t prepare.

Trading offers the flexibility to choose your own schedule. Don’t take this freedom for granted. Be grateful and cherish the opportunity. I love that my most successful students stay humble.

If you want it bad enough, you’ll make time to study.

Let Me Teach You

I love to teach and share my passion for trading. Thanks to technology, there’s never been a better time to be able to trade from anywhere. It’s even possible for people to learn while they work in full-time jobs.

But remember, 90% of traders lose. If you don’t want to be part of that statistic, you have to accept that you must study.

A lot of people consider a career in trading because they think they can get rich quick. That’s not realistic. My most successful trading student, Tim Grittani, made nothing for his first nine months. Give yourself realistic expectations and the time to see it through.

I think trading is still a better option than spending tons of money on college or university. You can learn trading in a couple of years if you’re dedicated. And none of my educational resources cost more than a few thousand dollars. A lot of them are even free.

I have specific setups that I trade and rules I stick to. And I expect my students to as well. Rule #1 is to cut losses quickly!

Sounds simple enough right? So many traders struggle with losing. That’s something you have to accept as a trader. There will be losses, so keep them as small as you can.

My goal is to create successful students. That’s why I don’t accept just anyone into my Trading Challenge. You have to apply. I don’t want lazy people who don’t want to put in the time or effort. I don’t want to waste my time or yours.

If you’re ready to enjoy the freedom that trading offers, start studying now. I provide a lot of free resources online. Start with my blog and YouTube channel.

👉🏼 SUBSCRIBE to my FREE weekly stock watchlist here.

To get the next level of education, get in my Trading Challenge. Apply now!

What do you think about this post? Let me know in the comments … I love to hear from you!

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Author card Timothy Sykes picture

Timothy Sykes

Tim Sykes is a penny stock trader and teacher who became a self-made millionaire by the age of 22 by trading $12,415 of bar mitzvah money. After becoming disenchanted with the hedge fund world, he established the Tim Sykes Trading Challenge to teach aspiring traders how to follow his trading strategies. He’s been featured in a variety of media outlets including CNN, Larry King, Steve Harvey, Forbes, Men’s Journal, and more. He’s also an active philanthropist and environmental activist, a co-founder of Karmagawa, and has donated millions of dollars to charity. Read More

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* Results are not typical and will vary from person to person. Making money trading stocks takes time, dedication, and hard work. There are inherent risks involved with investing in the stock market, including the loss of your investment. Past performance in the market is not indicative of future results. Any investment is at your own risk. See Terms of Service here

The available research on day trading suggests that most active traders lose money. Fees and overtrading are major contributors to these losses.

A 2000 study called “Trading is Hazardous to Your Wealth: The Common Stock Investment Performance of Individual Investors” evaluated 66,465 U.S. households that held stocks from 1991 to 1996. The households that traded most averaged an 11.4% annual return during a period where the overall market gained 17.9%. These lower returns were attributed to overconfidence.

A 2014 paper (revised 2019) titled “Learning Fast or Slow?” analyzed the complete transaction history of the Taiwan Stock Exchange between 1992 and 2006. It looked at the ongoing performance of day traders in this sample, and found that 97% of day traders can expect to lose money from trading, and more than 90% of all day trading volume can be traced to investors who predictably lose money. Additionally, it tied the behavior of gamblers and drivers who get more speeding tickets to overtrading, and cited studies showing that legalized gambling has an inverse effect on trading volume.

A 2019 research study (revised 2020) called “Day Trading for a Living?” observed 19,646 Brazilian futures contract traders who started day trading from 2013 to 2015, and recorded two years of their trading activity. The study authors found that 97% of traders with more than 300 days actively trading lost money, and only 1.1% earned more than the Brazilian minimum wage ($16 USD per day). They hypothesized that the greater returns shown in previous studies did not differentiate between frequent day traders and those who traded rarely, and that more frequent trading activity decreases the chance of profitability.

These studies show the wide variance of the available data on day trading profitability. One thing that seems clear from the research is that most day traders lose money .

Millionaire Media 66 W Flagler St. Ste. 900 Miami, FL 33130 United States (888) 878-3621 This is for information purposes only as Millionaire Media LLC nor Timothy Sykes is registered as a securities broker-dealer or an investment adviser. No information herein is intended as securities brokerage, investment, tax, accounting or legal advice, as an offer or solicitation of an offer to sell or buy, or as an endorsement, recommendation or sponsorship of any company, security or fund. Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes cannot and does not assess, verify or guarantee the adequacy, accuracy or completeness of any information, the suitability or profitability of any particular investment, or the potential value of any investment or informational source. The reader bears responsibility for his/her own investment research and decisions, should seek the advice of a qualified securities professional before making any investment, and investigate and fully understand any and all risks before investing. Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes in no way warrants the solvency, financial condition, or investment advisability of any of the securities mentioned in communications or websites. In addition, Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes accepts no liability whatsoever for any direct or consequential loss arising from any use of this information. This information is not intended to be used as the sole basis of any investment decision, nor should it be construed as advice designed to meet the investment needs of any particular investor. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future returns.

Citations for Disclaimer

Barber, Brad M. and Odean, Terrance, Trading is Hazardous to Your Wealth: The Common Stock Investment Performance of Individual Investors. Available at SSRN: “Day Trading for a Living?”

Barber, Brad M. and Lee, Yi-Tsung and Liu, Yu-Jane and Odean, Terrance and Zhang, Ke, Learning Fast or Slow? (May 28, 2019). Forthcoming: Review of Asset Pricing Studies, Available at SSRN: “https://ssrn.com/abstract=2535636”

Chague, Fernando and De-Losso, Rodrigo and Giovannetti, Bruno, Day Trading for a Living? (June 11, 2020). Available at SSRN: “https://ssrn.com/abstract=3423101”