The following are a list of nine things you want to avoid at all costs. Anyone of them can literally destroy your financial dreams and goals!
1. Trading with money you can’t afford to lose.
One of the greatest obstacles to successful trading is using money that you really can’t afford to lose. Examples of this would be money that is supposed to be used to pay the mortgage, bills or your child’s college tuition. This is sometimes referred to as “trading with scared money” and there is a very good reason for that. Ultimately what happens is that when someone knows in the back of their mind that they are risking the rent money, they trade out of fear and emotion versus logic and no emotion.
If you are in this situation I highly recommend that you stop trading until you earn enough to put into an account that you truly can afford to lose without causing major financial setbacks. You can start with as little as $2000 and trade stocks under $30.
2. The need to be “certain”.
We all have the need to make sure that the trade we want to make is going to be a good one. Therefore we look for signs that will give us a confirmation to enter. This can come in several forms, for example… Tuning into CNBC or the Wall Street Journal to give us news that our stock is on the move or waiting for a couple of extra days to make sure that the stock is really flying and just not on a false breakout. Other traders will get opinions from friends, family or broker. Others will wait for ten technical indicators to line up and give the “green light”.
All of these are okay to a point, however the big mistake to avoid is taking so much time that you let the trade take off without you. Interestingly, what ends up happening as a result of waiting too long is that you actually increase your risk. This is because as a stock moves higher and higher there are fewer buyers left in the market and it can come tumbling down until more buyers step in. It is like a game of musical chairs; eventually someone gets caught without a chair.
Traders who wait and wait and wait to make extra sure are usually the ones buying the top tick just before the stocks sells off. They then beat themselves up thinking they picked the wrong stock. Odds are it had nothing to do with their selection, just bad timing.
The thing to keep in mind is that there can be no absolute certainty in any given trade. All we ever can do is take a very educated risk along with a leap of faith!
3. Spending profits before you make them.
Nothing is more exciting then getting into a trade that blasts off and puts you into a highly profitable situation. This can cause major problems however, because this type of trade puts you in a highly euphoric state and leads to daydreaming about the huge profits still to come. You say “Wow I’m already up 15% in two days; I’ll be up 50% in a week and probably double my money in no time!” Then the next thing that happens is you are deciding on the great new car you are going to buy or perhaps telling your boss that he can stick it… Well you get the idea!