Forest for the trees

“Forest for the trees”. I remember first hearing this when I was much younger from a family friend of ours. I knew this quote and thought I understood what it meant. It’s all about looking at the big picture and not getting bogged down into the minor little details because in the end, it’s all about the result. It appears in Jack Reacher with Tom Cruise, with his witty comment “Forest for the trees, detective, forest for the trees.”. How true.

I am always reading, and lately it’s been all about mental models and human behaviour. With the aim of understanding myself better (Isn’t that a paradox, using my own mind to understand myself more.), people and the world in general.

Going back to knowing the “forest for the trees”, it dawned upon how much I do, at times, get stuck into unmeaningful minor details. By stuck, it may be mentally “brooding” over or having to “fix” or be “busy” with this minor detail. All of them are equally as bad, as it robs one from precious time and energy.

This applies to forex trading as well. Have you ever let one trade impact your trading psychology and your future trades? I continually remind myself, one trade of many for each trade I take and to focus on the process of trading well.

There is a huge difference between knowing and truly understanding. Remember, to keep focusing on the bigger picture.

Forest for the trees Robin!

Credit to https://www.pexels.com/@markusspiske for this wonderful photo. 

What insight about life have you acquired that seems obvious to you…

I read a great deal and through various AMA’s, podcasts and articles.. a common question is “What insight about life have you acquired that seems obvious to you, but might not be obvious to anyone else?” (This sounds like a job interview question!)

What would your answer to this be?

Mine would resonate with Derek Siver’s post titled “Obvious“..

Hit songwriters often admit that their most successful hit song was one they thought was just stupid, even not worth recording.

We’re clearly a bad judge of our own creations. We should just put it out and let the world decide.

How very true.

One answer that caught my attention that goes deep into the midst of life, death and our significance is from, Naval Ravikant, CEO & Founder of AngelList and his podcast interview with Tim Ferris (link here).

This is a tough one. It’s a deep question. I do have one fundamental recent belief that I’ve acquired in the last few years that I don’t think most people would agree with. It’s such a personal thing, and it came about in such a personal circumstances that I’m not sure anyone will get there in the same line of reasoning. That said, I’ll lay it out anyway, which is, I’m not afraid of death anymore.

I think a lot of the struggle we have in life comes from a deep, deep fear of death. It can take form in many ways. One can be that we want to write the great American novel. We want to achieve something in this world. We want to build something. We want to build a great piece of technology, or we want to start an amazing business, or we want to run for office and make a difference. A lot of this comes from this fear that we’re going to die, so we have to build something that lasts beyond us.

Obviously, the obsession that parents have with their children. A lot of that is warranted biological love, but some of that is also the quest for immortality. Even some of the beliefs of some of the more outlandish parts of religion I think fall into that. I don’t have the quest for immortality anymore. I think I came to this fundamental conclusion. I thought about it a lot. The universe has been around for a long time, and the universe is a very, very large place. If you’ll study even the smallest bit of science, for all practical purposes we are nothing. We are ameba. We are bacteria to the universe. We’re basically monkeys on a small rock orbiting a small backwards star in a huge galaxy, which is in an absolutely staggeringly gigantic universe, which itself may be part of a gigantic multiverse. This universe has been around probably for 10 billion years or more, and will be around for tens of billions of years afterwards. Your existence, my existence is just infinitesimal. It’s like a firefly blinking once in the night.

We’re not really here that long, and we don’t really matter that much. Nothing that we do lasts. Eventually, you will fade. Your works will fade. Your children will fade. Your thoughts will fade. These planets will fade. This sun will fade. It will all be gone. There are entire civilizations which we remember now with one or two words. Sumerian. Mayan. Do you know any Sumerians or Mayans? Do you hold any of them in high regard or esteem? Have they outlived their natural lifespan somehow? No. I think we’re just here for an extremely short period of time. From here, you can choose to believe in an afterlife or not. If you really do believe in an afterlife, then that should give you comfort and make you realize that maybe everything that goes on in this life is not that consequential. On the other hand, if you don’t believe in an afterlife, you should also come to a similar conclusion. You should realize that this is such a short and precious life that it’s really important that you don’t spend it being unhappy. There’s no excuse for spending most of your life in misery. You’ve only got 70 years out of the 50 billion or so that the universe is going to be around. Whatever your natural state is, it’s probably not this. This is your living state. Your dead state is true over a much longer time frame. When I think about the world that way, I realize it’s just kind of a game.

Which is not to say that you go to a dark place, and you start acting unethically and immorally. Quite the contrary, you realize just how precious life is and how it’s important to make sure that you enjoy yourself, you sleep well at night, you’re a good moral person, you’re generally happy, you take care of other people, you help out, but you can’t take it too seriously. You can’t get hung up over it. You can’t make yourself miserable and unhappy over it. You just have a very short period of time here on this earth. Nothing you do is going to matter that much in the long run. Don’t take yourself so seriously. That just kind of helps make everything else work.

That’s an insight about life that I’ve acquired that now seems obvious to me, but it’s really not obvious to most people.

All food for thought.

Here’s to the good life.

Robin

Forex Millionaire Trader Slack Community

Why hello there,

It’s been close to a year since my last post. Much has happened in both my personal life, trading life and the financial markets. The biggest craze and talk in the financial markets is all Bitcoin FOMO and talk. I could write a very long post about this (I plan to touch upon this in a later post).

What have I been up to? I am still traveling extensively – for both work & pleasure. My last leg was around to the UK, France, Germany and then to Taiwan. “Work” wise, I am trading, investing and running business. Nowadays it’s more towards the investing into businesses rather than running them (I guess it’s a natural progression?).

I do have some news for this site.

I present to you the Forex Millionaire Trader Slack Community. You have to apply, as we do not want this to be a spammy / useless Slack Forex Community.

Get to meet and share ideas with fellow traders.

The discussions covered (for now):

  • Forex Trading – self explanatory.
  • Broker Accounts – filtering out the good from the bad.
  • Internationalism – For the international jet setter / digital nomad / nomadic trader. Discuss, flag theory, perpetual travel, international business and lifestyle.

How to apply?

Use the contact us page. And submit your details and in the comments section answer,

  1. “Why you should be part of our community?”
  2. “Tell us about yourself”

Who is this for?

  • Forex Traders
  • Digital Nomads
  • Forex Nomads
  • Internationalism Followers

What’s the cost?

Currently, it’s free. The questions is, will you be accepted into the Forex Millionaire Trader Slack Community.

You can find more about it on this page: Forex Millionaire Trader Slack Community

Until next time,

Robin

Bitcoin Wealth Distribution

Following on my Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency & FOMO post. This seemed very approriate. I stumbled on this whilst doing some cyrpto reading. Bitcoin Wealth Distribution conducted by Howmuch.net (https://howmuch.net/articles/bitcoin-wealth-distribution). Assuming their calcutions are correct, it represents a very interesting side of the (bit)“coin”. Obviously the Author puts disclaimers on data accuracy etc. However, I do believe it is food for thought, especially comparing with the original concept of Bitcoin. Even if you take it at a loose 5% of addresses own 90%, it’s eye opening.

 

Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency & FOMO

I love the markets. The volatility and the endless opportunity. I rarely read the news, I do get sent a great deal of information from fellow traders, friends and business associates. Right now, it’s all about Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, ICO (Initial Coint Offerings) and Alt Coins. I see a lot of people suffering and jumping in the markets due to Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency & FOMO. For those who don’t know what FOMO is, it stands for fear of missing out. A new age term (as Google put’s it: anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may currently be happening elsewhere, often aroused by posts seen on social media.).

It’s quite fascinating to see, the mental dynamics. No doubt there are many people who have made millions from Bitcoin and other Cryptos. Just have a gander at the Bitcoin chart. If you bought some at the start of the year, and gotten in at about the $800 mark, you would then now be sitting on over 9 fold that (9x! / 900%) call that for yield. It is just under $8000 and who know’s where it will go next.

There are many who have been holding Bitcoin sub $50. You’d be an extremely happy person, if you happened to be one of them. Or even when it first started and the super nerds & geeks jumped on the bitcoin bandwagon, without caring about the price, they purely liked the technology (note the buzz word of the moment – blockchain) and ideology behind it. That’s the reason why it was created – a distributed open ledger, not for investment speculation.

My word of advice to those who want to get into this game are:

  1. Don’t trade Bitcoin, Crypto’s (or any investment for that matter), out of FOMO. You’re investing with your emotions and out of fear (that’s a killer, right there).. and chasing a trade. Don’t be a Bitcoin FOMO trader.
  2. If you do opt to trade these, make sure you have damn well done your research and understand what you are getting into (and more importantly how to get out unscathed, if it doesn’t go to plan). Understand the concepts, the workings of these ‘coins’ before trading anything.
  3. If you are looking at ICOs.. be extremely careful. There are many scams, and if you look at the charts, they have a similarity to “pump & dump” / penny stocks / some IPOs. Don’t get caught on the wrong side.
  4. For coin storage, please use a ‘Cold Wallet’ / offline wallet and don’t leave it on the Coin Exchange / Online Wallet. Many of these have vanished over night or have been hacked.
  5. Understand the risks –  this is an unregulated market after all.

Happy Trading,

Robin

Paul Tudor Jones – Swing Trader Rules

I forgot who sent me this. It’s been sitting on my desktop, waiting for me to post it to the site. I really like it. It’s apparently some of the rules / philosophies of Paul Tudor Jones, the famous swing trader and hedge fund manager.

I really like the second one. I really set boundaries on my emotional energy. Have a read through it. There are many gems in this deceivingly simple list. I am sure some will resonate with you.

Happy Trading!

Robin

Paul Tudor Jones – Swing Trader Rules

  • Swing trader, the best money is made at the market turns. Has missed a lot of meat in the middle, but catches a lot of tops and bottoms
  • Spends his day making himself happy and relaxed. Gets out of a losing position that is making him uncomfortable. Nothing’s better than a fresh start. Key is to play great defense, not great offense.
  • Never average loses. Decreases his trading size when he is doing poorly, increase when he is trading well.
  • He has mental stops. If it hits that number, he is out no matter what. He uses not only price stops, but time stops.
  • Monitors the whole portfolio equity (risk) in real time.
  • He believes prices move first and fundamentals come second.
  • He doesn’t care about mistakes made three seconds ago, but what he is going to do from the next moment on.
  • Don’t be a hero. Don’t have an ego. Always question yourself and your ability. Don’t ever feel that you are very good. The second you do, you are dead.

Easy Order MT4 Script – Position Sizing

I met up with a friend the other day who was asking me how do I do my positions sizing when I trade. I have always told him for years that I will risk 1-5% of my capital per trade, depending on the nuances of the trade. However my words have fallen on deaf ears, as he always asks me what risk do I take per trade – the answer has always been the same (for absolute beginners I recommend to start with 1% maximum). He always asks how I position size my trade etc.. ever since stumbling upon the Easy Order MT4 Script, whoever asks me about positions sizing, my answer is a straight up use position sizing with the Easy Order MT4 Script.

It’s one of the easiest things to do ever. Let’s call my friend, XYZ. XYZ has always been using fixed lot sizes to trade. He thinks it is rocket science to calculate your position size and allocate a percent % risk of your capital per trade. If you are trading, use a position size that is allocated with a percent % risk of your capital per trade. Ideally keep it between 1-2% to begin with, and as you gain more confidence you can increase / decrease as per your individual trade rules. It couldn’t be anymore simpler and there are now an array of position size calculators out there, and the majority of them are for free! =D

Sangmane has done a wonderful job at offering an automatically calculated position size trade calculate for free. Thank you again, sir. You can download it here (Easy Order MT4 Script) and find the instructions as well.

Happy Trading!

Robin

Forex System Hopping

Don’t do this. Forex System Hopping is the kiss of death for any trader. It’s the never ending search for the Coveted Forex Holy Grail System. I try and limit my time with those who I consider time wasters / energy vampires / askholes. (I quite like Urban Dictionary’s definition of time wasters: A person who either consciously or unconsciously tries to engage you in a fruitless investment of your energy, time, money or attention.) However this past week, I admittedly gave in to meet a mutual friend, who is also a trader. I have been putting off meeting this person the past several months. The reason being is that every time we meet it’s the same story over and over again. He is a serious forex system hopper (and hoper!).

He loves to talk to me about forex trading. The issue is that he doesn’t want to hear anything I say, he only wants to hear what he is saying. When I first met him, I thought wow, he must be a pretty decent trader. He kept sending me videos and screenshots of the trades he was taking. There would be figures of $10,000-$100,000 USD in the money for the day, impressive right? He would explain to me about this new forex system he had learned and on how he was doubling, tripling his account in X months. Then, suddenly I would not hear from him and he’d vanish. But like a magician, he would reappear back and want to talk about a new different forex trading system and show his amazing results etc.

This has been going on for years. What I found out, was that the large wins that were being showcased were on a demo account and his real account was significantly smaller (5 figures under). When he was loud and sending me all his wins, it was when he was winning on his real account. Then he when he blew up his account, he would go quiet.

I have had serious conversations with him to 1, stop forex system hopping 2, stop trading the demo account and showcasing it as real wins 3, start building up real capital to trade a real forex account, instead of living in demo dream land. All of these have fallen on deaf ears. It’s a shame really, as he is a good guy.

It’s tiring, especially when the solution is so simple. Then at the end of it, he always asks me for advice. This is the askhole part. For those who don’t know what an askhole is, here is Urban Dictionary’s definition: A person who constantly ask for your advice, yet always does the opposite of what you told them.

Don’t be Forex System Hopping around, take this game seriously. There is money to be made, it require’s effort, work and dedication. If you are committed to succeeding these articles will help:

$100,000 USD in Trading Capital
Goal(s) + Self Discipline + Feedback Loop

To our success,

Robin

P.S. I made my 1 post for August, just in nick of time. 😉

P.P.S. This is definitely not a one off case. There are many out there forex system hopping around.

Real Forex “Shortcuts”

I see this all the time. Everyone wants forex “shortcuts”, rather than figuring things out and doing some proper work to make it in this game. They want the road to getting insanely rich quickly from learning a new system ( keyword to watch out for: “the Forex Holy Grail System”) or following trade signals from a trade “guru / pro” to become the next forex millionaire trader. However, more often than not, most of these forex newbie traders following those forex “shortcuts” end up going quiet (almost as quiet as the crickets) as the system fails or the trade signals simply don’t turn the profit as it was meant to do.

What ensues after a period of draw down / a string of losses on these systems, is great mass panic (chime in: fear & greed). And the reason is very simple. The forex newbie trader doesn’t know how the system works or even worse, he/she may not even know what the system is. Thus they lose a great deal of confidence in the trading system and then switches or goes on a new search for the Coveted Forex Holy Grail System – again.

This is not to look down on anyone selling trading systems nor trade signal providers. I am sure there are some genuinely true profitable providers out there, however unfortunately in this business there are more people out to make money from selling the forex trading system / trade signals rather than trading profitably for themselves. (On a side note: Later in my trading journey, I started to question why on earth would someone who trades profitably want to sell some course / trading system or spend time with some unknown trader. Trade signals on the other hand I can sort of see.. but that doesn’t really help the forex newbie trader themselves.)

Can you live off forex trading? You can definitely live off forex trading. The question is, are you willing to go that extra mile to give what it really takes to make it in this game.

Stop looking for forex “shortcuts”. Go read about the markets. And before you trade live, question.. WHY does this forex system work (please don’t answer it because this forex guru / pro said so… or because that’s what this forum member said..). What edge does this trade have over all of the other trades and traders. If you can’t answer these, go back to the drawing board and figure out the why, not the how.

To success!

Robin

P.S. *YAY* to me. My second post of the month! 😛

Perspective: Scalper vs Swing Trader

Haha. I know this is an old forex meme. But it still makes me LOL. It’s a matter of perspective: scalper vs swing trader. I personally believe as a trader you have to be able to trade all styles, time frames and financial instruments. You’ll most likely hone down to a specific style, time frame and instrument of choice – which is only natural. However you need to understand other styles and need to to be flexible.

I started off scalping, trading the 1 and 5 minute charts. Now I mainly trade the dailies and at times drop down to the lower time frames for quicker trades and entries. I can take trades of 15 minute charts or even monthly time frames. I don’t call myself a swing trader or a scalper. Just a trader.

Happy Independence Day! Here’s to consistent and profitable forex trading!

Robin

Swing-trader-scalper-oil