Retired Real Estate Professional
IT Software Specialist
Put simply; the idea is that any goal is more likely to be achieved as long as it’s Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Limited.
Of course, this approach sounds great in theory.
And it’s still an approach loved by legions of entrepreneurs and management consultants. However, recent research in the field of human learning and performance has revealed some significant problems with it.
And these inconsistencies apply to stock traders as much as to anyone else seeking to learn a new skill or hit a new target.
Now, it’s not too difficult for a trader to set goals that are both specific and measurable. “To make a million dollars,” “To double my account,” “To earn $100 a day,” are all common ambitions that meet those criteria.
The problem is that new traders cannot possibly know whether those goals are achievable or realistic – particularly within a limited timescale.
Is it possible to make a million dollars over the course of a full-time trading career?
In ten years, trading just a couple of hours a day?
But in a single year starting with an account of just a few thousand dollars?
Almost certainly not.
There are just too many unknown and uncontrollable variables for goals like these to be realistic for beginning traders.
And the drive to achieve specific financial targets within a set time is one of the main reasons so many traders blow up their accounts and quit the markets.
Small business owner, Jeremy Zutter of Surrey British Columbia, was initially excited by the profit potential of trading options, but quickly began to feel that its complexities were not right for him at this stage of his journey. After losing 75% of his small account, he switched to trading stocks with a renewed focus on the development of his skills. To his delight, within just a couple of weeks, Jeremy succeeded in rebuilding his account to 165% of its low point.
Surrey, British Columbia – Canada
Small Business Owner
Home services business owner, Jeremy Zutter, for example, was strongly attracted to the profit potential of options trading. And while many new traders have succeeded with options, they can indeed be challenging.
Jeremy freely admits that he felt overwhelmed and a bit out of his league, and he quickly lost 75% of his $4,000 trading account.
He knew that he needed to reset, give up options – at least for the time being – and with the help of Jeff Williams of Profit Prism begin focusing on learning the essential skills he needed.
Almost accidentally, Jeremy stumbled on one of the key concepts of learning and performance – now well understood by science, that what is needed are not SMART goals but process goals.
“I was in an options service but knew I wasn’t ready and felt more comfortable trading stocks.”
The key is to focus on the processes that lead to the acquisition of essential skills, which can be controlled, rather than thinking only of outcomes, which cannot.
The importance of process goals is now well understood in the field of sports science, but they can be equally applied to trading.
Just as a golfer who wants to improve might be encouraged to replace a goal of “breaking 80” with a commitment to practicing his putting for 30 minutes a day, so a trader might replace a monetary target with a goal of placing 10 paper trades a week on a virtual platform following tightly-defined rules for entries and exits.
Undoubtedly, this approach to learning resonates with Jeremy.
“Be a student of the game,” is how he puts it, “as [MMA Champion] Conor McGregor once said, “You must be obsessed.”
Obsession might be putting it too strongly, but there’s no doubt that hard work and practice are essential for traders who want to excel. And this kind of focused effort, combined with the expertise of his coaches at Profit Prism has produced immediate results for Jeremy.
“Be a student of the game. As Coner Mcgregor once said, “You must be obsessed.”
In just a couple of weeks of applying some sound technical principles to the range trading of Menlo Therapeutics Inc. [MNLO], Jeremy has increased his depleted trading account by $600.00.
“I know that doesn’t sound like much,” Jeremy concedes, “but I had $4,000 US, and my account fell to $1,010 about 3 weeks ago. It’s at $1,650 today. I feel with what I’ve learned about risk control, this will continue to grow.”
And indeed, observing proper risk management protocols, setting position sizes, and getting in or out of trades at predetermined profit or loss points, regardless of emotion or financial outcome, is almost by definition to be pursuing a process goal.
Even more importantly, Jeremy now has the attitude common among all wealthy traders and indeed those who succeed in any walk of life.
So-called “failures” are not to be regretted, but rather welcomed as valuable opportunities for learning.
That’s why when Jeremy looks back at his setbacks in trading options, he feels a sense of gratitude rather than resentment.
“I like these losses when I look back,” he says, “because reflection is profit moving forward.”
That’s a profound insight coming from a new trader. And they’re words that many with far more experience might do well to print out and place in a prominent position near their trading screens.
“My account fell to $1,010 about 3 weeks ago. It’s at $1,650 today. I feel that with what I ‘ve learned about risk control with Jeff Williams, this will continue to grow.”
For now, Jeremy’s focus remains on the immediate and the practical. Essentially, he’s highly focused on the process.
“My goal is very simple,” he explains, “I just continue to learn more each day and make sure my victories are bigger than my defeats.”
Of course, nothing is guaranteed in trading, but this new approach which Jeremy is learning from his mentor, Jeff Williams, comes as close as anything can to assuring success in the markets.
Raging Bull does NOT track or verify subscribers’ individual trading results and these individual experiences should NOT be understood as typical as or representative. Please see our Testimonials Disclaimer here: https://ragingbull.com/disclaimer.
Retired Real Estate Professional
IT Software Specialist