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The benefits of creating a journal in this forum


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The benefits of creating a journal in this forum

  #1 (permalink)
 
Big Mike's Avatar
 Big Mike 
Manta, Ecuador
Site Administrator
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Swing Trader
 
Experience: Advanced
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Broker: IBKR
Trading: Stocks & Futures
Frequency: Every few days
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My main purpose in starting my blog was to hold myself accountable. I knew that by doing so my trading would improve, because I finally made the huge revelation that I (my brain) was holding back my own profitability for one simple reason. I wasn't being honest with myself. I was constantly making excuses as to why something didn't work.

It was absolutely crucial my trading improve, so I decided to leap forward right to the edge -- and start my blog and start putting everything out there for public consumption and public accountability.

Almost immediately, I found the blog to drastically improve all of my weakest areas of trading -- the mental side of things that were previously holding me back.

The community was very receptive to my blog, so I started the forum. The main purpose of the forum was to give back to others, and give them the tools and the avenue to make similar revelations in their own trading.

So, why start a journal here in the forum?

- Opportunity to be honest with yourself
- Reflect upon what worked, and what didn't
- Improve your trading, take it to the next level

What not to be afraid of:

- People questioning you
- Someone thinking your dumb, or your trades are dumb
- Your charts won't make sense to others
- The instrument you trade isn't popular in the forum

The journal is to help the person posting it (that would be you). Sure, viewers and outsiders looking in can benefit, but the best way they could REALLY benefit would be to start their own journal. You can't be a successful trader by simply copying what others are doing.

I hope to see more of you creating your own journals here on the site and updating them on a regular basis. Your journal can be as detailed or summarized as you wish, it is up to you. I suggest you briefly describe your entries, then post charts showing the days activity. You can go further if you wish by posting Profit and Loss reports. It is entirely up to you.

Mike



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  #2 (permalink)
 
Big Mike's Avatar
 Big Mike 
Manta, Ecuador
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Swing Trader
 
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Trading: Stocks & Futures
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If you prefer an excel spreadsheet based journal, I created this post for you and attached a spreadsheet here:



Mike



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  #3 (permalink)
 CaptainKirk 
FL/TN
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: TOS, NT
Trading: /ES /6E /6J /6B /CL
Posts: 3 since Jul 2010
Thanks Given: 0
Thanks Received: 22


Big Mike, thanks for the spreadsheet.
Here is a spreadsheet (you must enable macros) that will capture your screenshot (I use Gadwin PrintScreen, to put it in the paste buffer).

Anyways, you take you screenshot, pop into Excel, hit Ctrl-T, and it creates a TABsheet, puts the date/time on it, moves to a specific row/column, pastes the screen in, resizes the screen, and puts your cursor up top so you can take quick notes.

Hopefully someone can take advantage of this. I like it because it captures the screen I was seeing when I made the decision to get in.

The spreadsheet is unlocked in case people want to change the macros...

Enjoy.

Kirk Out!
PS: My first post, took me a couple of minutes to add the file. Hope people enjoy it.

Attached Files
Elite Membership required to download: MyTradeBook.xls
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  #4 (permalink)
 mindfultrader 
Seattle Washington
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Trading: ES
Posts: 52 since Jan 2011
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Big Mike

This is what I know will benefit me and I have told myself that I woudl keep a journal ona daily basis. Still wonder if I can but I do know I do believe this - that a forum, a place to journal my experiene will change everything and I am ready for that kind of change. Yoda saidit well: "There is no trying, only doing" and I have been trying for too long!

Thank you for the boost!

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  #5 (permalink)
 
TIFONTrader's Avatar
 TIFONTrader 
Prague Czech Republic
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Sierra Chart, daytradr
Broker: EdgeClear
Trading: Eurex Futures
Posts: 517 since Nov 2011
Thanks Given: 1,342
Thanks Received: 451

As many say, there is nothing more valuable in learning than on-hand experience.

My trading method is mainly discretionary so starting a journal here makes me sit glued to my charts and not concentrating on too many things at once. It is a real kick to start what I should have strated long ago. So much different from sitting in front of static charts and just checking what happened.

This is real.

Thanks.

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  #6 (permalink)
greedforsuccess
Sofia Bulgaria
 
Posts: 8 since Mar 2012
Thanks Given: 6
Thanks Received: 2

The idea for sharing is good, but also brings a lot of distraction. Especially for those who mainly scalp.
About 3 years ago I started to describe my trades in excel with pictures(one at the moment of entry, second with stop at break even, third at close and fourth after 10-20 minutes to see if my close was really good), but only after few days I realize that if I am wrong with something is not my discipline or honest, but my knowledge about market dynamics. Then I had to get deeper look on what Al Brooks has written in his book and then I discovered what my trading really needs.

Thanks a lot to Al and now to Big Mike for this forum. It is a really nice place

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  #7 (permalink)
 
Yuri57's Avatar
 Yuri57 
Budapest, Hungary
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: Windows 95
Trading: YM
Posts: 286 since Feb 2013
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The only way to learn trading is to start reviewing your own mistakes and trying to get rid all of them.

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  #8 (permalink)
lezzlee
Budapest, Hungary
 
Posts: 25 since Sep 2013
Thanks Given: 41
Thanks Received: 37


Yuri57 View Post
The only way to learn trading is to start reviewing your own mistakes and trying to get rid all of them.

I totally agree!

However, I've found that it takes time to learn what is a mistake. One must practice a strategy to have enough trades to review.. then needs to iterate.. until consistency and profitability reached.
One might call this backtesting but the point here is that it is unlikely that logging the first attempt will take anybody to perfection.

Sometimes it took me 3-4 times of different 30-40 trade attempts to separate wrong, good but turned to bad, bad but turned to good (these are the worst mistakes) and good trades. I wish I've done all in sim

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  #9 (permalink)
 
JPJ Trading's Avatar
 JPJ Trading 
Traverse City, Michigan
 
Experience: Master
Platform: MarketDelta, Ninja Trader
Trading: ES
Posts: 9 since Mar 2013
Thanks Given: 3
Thanks Received: 11

If I may offer some advice. Keeping a journal is a great idea, however I would make a suggestion.
Most people record in their journals both winning and losing trades. I would focus more on the trades that did not work and for the following reasons:
1. If you are sticking to your trading plan and your trades are working then Great!
But
2. If you are not sticking to your trading plan and are making revenge trades or becoming impatient and just making trades to make a trade these will all show up in your journal if you keep track of them.
If you keep doing the same thing over and over making the same mistakes..well, that is insane.
So first you need to find out what you keep doing wrong, remember you can't fix it if you don't know what you keep doing wrong over and over. Focus more and why you are losing and fix it, the winners will take care of themselves.

I hope this helps,
JP

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  #10 (permalink)
ofatrader
Europe
 
Posts: 91 since Dec 2013
Thanks Given: 431
Thanks Received: 154


Hi jpj,
Good advice, but to know how are you working with your winners and what are you doing can give you the knowledge for to recognise winner trades patterns. You can know how you are playing your winners and adjust your system to made it better.
All is important in trading

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