Learning to Make Trading Changes That Work

Trading Change Ahead

It’s a New Year again and this is the time of the year where many traders would have reviewed their trading journals and have made new year resolutions in the hope of better trading results… and of course, for a better personal life.

However, I also realise that, more often than not, many people attempt to make changes in their trading (or just life in general) but a year goes by and not much has changed. Are you one of them? If yes, you should read on.

Make a List

The idea of making changes seems to be rather daunting to many. Well, let’s try to make this exercise simpler just to get the ball rolling. And as simple as it sounds, all you need to do is to sit down, take a piece of paper and make a list of things you want to change.

These are the changes that you want or need to make in order to improve your trading. They can be related to your habits, your routine, your beliefs, your emotions, your systems and etc. If you struggle to write, ask yourself this: “What do I need to change/add/remove, so that when I change/add/remove, I will be able to achieve my goals… successfully… becoming the trader I want to be easily and effortlessly, today?”. Once you’ve identified what you need to change/add/remove, give a specific but realistic date that you want to achieve those goals.

This is probably the easiest part of the exercise but this is also the most important part. So make every effort to write the list that will help you become better and stronger as a person and as a trader.

Drip Fill the Bucket

As you make the list, you should start to relax and sit back to carefully consider your options. For some of you, you will start to analyse what you need to change/add/remove. On the other hand, some of you would like to make drastic changes so that you can make leap improvements in your trading. Either way is correct because it is really down to what you want.

However, if I may, I would like you to also consider the option of making small changes everyday. While making ambitious changes is great, some people find making small changes on a regular basis more effective. For example, some people may consider setting a specific time in the day to analyse the market and will completely shut down the charts after that duration. That helps make them become more discipline.

Write At Least 20 or More

more tradingNow that you’ve started writing, make sure to write down as many as 20 or even more of things that you want to change/add/remove. Make a note of everything that comes to your mind – as long as they contribute to your trading development, they are correct even if they do not sound like it initially.

As you continue to write more and more, you will realise that it becomes more challenging to write something relevant. However, this is where things get interesting. In fact, I would suggest that you should allocate even more time as you continue to write because you will need it.

You should realise that the first 5 items are the most obvious, the next 5 will be slightly more challenging and so is the subsequent 5. As you start to write the 20th item, you will be challenged and this is fine because from here onward, you will need to dig deep inside within yourself to find out what can you change that can really help you make a difference in your trading routine.

Repeat the question: “What do I need to change/add/remove, so that when I change/add/remove, I will be able to achieve my goals… successfully… becoming the trader I want to be easily and effortlessly, today?”.

From the 20th item onwards, these items will probably be the game changer because it is usually these items, from deep within inside you, that will really make the real difference in your trading. These are the things that you rarely think about but can potentially be most effective too.

20/80 Rule

Now that you have a list of items that you want to change/add/remove, you can now review them and decide what are the items that will really make an impact on your trading and that are most realistic? This is important because making changes is not about changing everything and trying to become someone else.

In fact, according to the 20/80 rule from the Pareto Principle, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. If you pick the right things to change, making a handful of changes is sufficient to make drastic impact on you.

So, I would like to invite you to identify the items that will really make changes in your trading and consider carefully how you want to implement them. When will you start? How will you start so that there is the least resistance?

Start Afresh

Trading from ScratchWeather you’re reading this at the start of the year or later in the year, you should take advantage of the fact that it is good to taken a break from trading. Reading this now, you know that you have clarity of what you want and what you want to do to make those changes because you just had a break from your charts.

Remember that everything that happened in the past is history. Start today as if you only started trading for the first time. Invite yourself and your unconscious mind to start afresh today knowing that you have all the resources that you need to become successful.

More importantly, commit yourself to the list of changes that you want to make. Your commitment in making changes is crucial and remember to tell yourself that everything you’ve done in the past are effectively feedback to become better and once you commit to change, you will become a better trader sooner or later…


In NLP, we believe that you are in charge of your mind and therefore your results. Now, if you really want to become successful in trading, I would like to invite you to start writing your list as soon as you finish reading this. Then start making those changes today.

With that, I wish you nothing but success in 2014, happy trading and happy New Year.


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