Nobody ever says trading is easy… WAIT, yes they do… All the time actually (but you and I know better).

Trading isn’t easy…BUT…  It Can Be!

The key is having the right tools and guidance.

But unfortunately, you can’t just read a book about technical analysis and begin picking winning trades right away… and you won’t be consistent overnight either.

Here at Petra Picks, it is my personal goal to help you grow as a trader. So today I am going to give you 3 simple steps you can take to improve your trading…

Whether you are working to become consistently profitable, or you’re ready to level up… these 3 critical steps will help you develop the mindset of a successful trader and set you up for consistency.

3 Simple Steps to Flourish as a Trader

Sure you need a strategy and system to become a good trader…

Believe it or not, that is the easy part… you can get set up with that right now with a membership to Petra Picks Platinum.

But to evolve as a trader you need to take further action.

Don’t worry, it’s not as intimidating as it sounds. In fact, if you follow these 3 simple steps (change your attitude, manage your risk *not what you think*, and simplify everything) it will make a world of a difference to your trading.

Step One: Change Your Attitude

I have always liked the saying – attitude is everything –  Technically, it should go without saying but nonetheless… it’s a powerful statement.

What am I talking about here?

Well, a lot actually… simply put, you need to have a mindset that will help you see and recognize opportunities.

When you’re trading, you should have a sense of optimism, and see the good in things. Even if you have a trading loss, it’s not really a negative, it’s a learning experience.

Stable emotions, a clear state of mind, and positive energy are the attitude traits you’ll need if you want to win in the stock market, as well as in life.

What will it do for your trading?

Look, the mind is a powerful thing. Very powerful. So if you think you are going to lose, or think you can’t make it, and doubt yourself AT ALL… you have already lost.

Without it, there is no way I would have had the guts to give trading a shot in my 50’s.

To evolve as a trader, you must foster the right attitude and work in a positive mental state, thus bringing clarity to your thoughts and trades.

So how can you create a positive attitude?

  • Practice Positive Affirmation: As one of my favorite SNL characters would say:  I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and Doggone it, People like me…

You can use that or create a mantra that works for you.

Now the hard part (joking), recite it at least 10 times when you wake up, focusing on the words and nothing else.

It can be as easy as – “today is going to be a great day”

But the key is to do it… and trust me… you will believe and feel it… and your trading will begin to thrive.

  • Turn negative self-talk into Positive Self-TalkThere are studies that analyze the language of people with depression. And one thing that pops up often is called negative self-talk. However, it’s so subtle you might not even realize you are doing it…
    • Instead of “I’m fine”, say “I’m great”
    • Don’t use all-or-nothing thinking with words like always and never… keep your mind open to solutions and clear thought
    • And stop it with words like should, can’t, alone, and fault etc.

Take time to listen to yourself and analyze the words you choose… then make a conscious effort to replace negative words with positive ones and you’ll be amazed at how your attitude changes.

The market isn’t out to get you… so stop thinking like that.

  • Focus on the present: There’s no better way to cloud your judgment and get in a funk than dwelling on the past or daydreaming about the future.You can’t change the past– when you’re trading, you have to try to learn from your wins and losses and then move on. That means focusing on what’s in front of you right now.And the only way to affect the future is to act in the present.

    When you just concentrate on the future, you delay any actions you can take to improve your present state. Make your goals… and then FOCUS on what’s in front of you!

  • Stick to positive friends and environmentsThey say you are what you eat… Well if that’s true, then think about the saying: 

    You are only going to be as good as the people you surround yourself with. 

    This is so important in life. If you surround yourself with negative thinkers and people with no goals… how do you expect to be the opposite?For that reason… I surround myself with positive, happy, focused, goal-oriented people everyday in my live trading room.

    Do this for me- Evaluate the people you spend time with and decide if they add value or detract from your progress and happiness. Then make the changes you need.

Step Two: Manage Your Risk – *don’t skip this, it’s not what you think*

You might be thinking yeah, duh… I know that… it’s one of the most talked-about subjects in all of trading.

Well, I’m not talking about proper sizing of trades or, stop losses here… as a trader, you should already have a strong grasp of those concepts (if not, check out this training series I put together.)

I am talking about preparation and review…

So many traders get their strategy and risk management rules set up and think they are set.

What could go wrong right?

Everything… you may have rules for risk management (those are foundational pieces of the trading puzzle) but what happens when things aren’t going to plan… mistakes can occur, that’s what

What do preparation and review have to do with risk management? I’ll show you…

  • Preparation is key: When it comes to risk… if you aren’t prepared, you are setting yourself up for potential failure. 

    That’s why it’s so important to ask yourself questions… 

    What does your morning look like?  Scratch that… what does your night look like? Do you relax and clear your head? Get to bed at a decent time? Sleep well? 

    You might be thinking that has nothing to do with my trades, but it sure does… without a clear mind and rest, you won’t go far.Now let’s move to the morning (the premarket is the most important part of the day)… Do you check social media? Answer emails? Try to multitask?

    Well, forget it… you’ve failed to plan for the trading day already… and increased the risk of losing… You can’t plan a trade properly when your mind is scattered or tired. Mental preparation is the first step.

    Successful traders are up early and checking the foreign markets, running through headlines, looking at upgrades and downgrades, as well as, sifting through the economic and corporate calendars.

    As for me, I make my mornings easier because I put together my trading watchlist the night before.

    Once you are tuned in to the market, you are ready to plan your trades… This is when your strategy and stop losses, etc. come into play… you see there is a lot of preparation before you can even plan a trade.

    So to manage risk on another level, remember— Preparation is key!

  • Review with intentIf you don’t know what is working… then it will be impossible to level up. How do you expect to grow your bottom line? You are basically taking more risk by not knowing where to make the adjustments. 

    Think about it. If you knew that a specific strategy was not working, would you continue to take trades based on it? I hope not. 

    So if you don’t take the time to review…  you are unknowingly taking on more risk each day…The Fix Review your trades with intent!

Step Three:  Simplify… Everything!

Simplify… just saying the word relaxes me…

Get rid of what doesn’t work and focus on what does… the extra energy spent trying to make something work that doesn’t fit your risk profile and personality is just wasted energy.

Let it go… and focus on your strengths.

When it comes to eating, there are a lot of food options out there. However, McDonald’s sticks to its core– burgers and fries— which have been good enough to make them one of the largest companies in the world.

If you can focus that wasted energy on what is working, I promise you, you will up your returns.

I was once told… “A side strategy is a die strategy”… so just work on one strategy… master it… and then try to add something else later on.  

Simply your trading, Focus on what works, One strategy at a time

In Closing

To evolve as a trader and up your game…Attitude is everything and Preparation is key… keep your trading Simple and it will set you free…

… but what if you are on step zero and don’t have your trading strategy yet?

Have no fear… I can help you with that, in fact, that’s the easy part.

Don’t waste time, money, and energy trying to learn super complicated systems and reading technical analysis books thinking you can go it alone.

Come trade on a team with a developed, profitable strategy and receive the guidance you need to excel from day 1… My strategy is based on two simple indicators. Therefore, anyone can pick it up quick.

Forget about doing it alone… that’s a risk you can’t afford!