Hey everyone, I figured it was time I started a thread here to document my progress and current hurdles. I was going to do my own blog on my own site, but I figured that would be more time than what I am willing to dedicate at this time.
My name is Jesse, and I am a 32 year old computer programmer specializing in business intelligence. I am looking to make a career change to being a full-time trader and I am hoping to achieve that goal in 5-7 years. I have an MBA from University of Phoenix, not that I expect that degree to help much with trading.
As I said earlier, my goal is to become a full time trader. For me, that means replacing my primary job with trading. Ideally, I would spend less than 10 hours a day on trading to make the same amount of money (salary + benefits totaling $90,000 annually). One of the main things that is motivating me for this is the desire for more free time to pursue other interests such as traveling, purchasing rental properties, and perhaps opening a retail store. With trading paying the bills, I can retire from my day job and have complete control of my time.
Why Do I Think I Can Do This?
I am sure everyone here has heard from a lot of newbies saying the same things I am. I am sure my story and experiences are nothing new and that others before me have tried and failed. I believe I can do this because other people can do it. As Anthony Hopkin’s said in The Edge, “if one man can do it, so can another”. I am a smart person. I am fairly rational. I believe I can achieve this goal.
My other talents as a data analyst (finding patterns in data) and as a computer programmer (automating testing of strategies) can help me be more efficient in what I do, but my main talent of being nearly fully self-educated in most all things will allow me to learn how to trade.
My current struggle is with putting together a strategy. As with anything, traders I talk with on the Internet have a wide variety of opinions. However, most everyone says you should find a strategy that you can execute consistently. My struggle is that no one elaborates on what is available to create a strategy! I have demo tested a strategy that revolves around placing buy orders at support levels and sell orders at resistance levels, but that wasn’t profitable.
The next idea I had was to find a more mechanical system built around moving average crossovers with RSI confirmation that I could automate via programming to test out, but everyone I talk to says that mechanical systems don’t work. That doesn’t mean I am not going to test one, but it does have me second guessing that decision.
Finally, I have a hard time seeing harmonic patterns such as cypher patterns, Gartley patterns, and Bat/Butterfly/Crab patterns. I see double tops, head and shoulders, wedge, triangle and flag patterns fairly easily so maybe I can build a strategy around those.
My Next Steps
I never like leaving posts like this without trying to determine some next steps I can take to move forward (plus give me a reason to come back and update!). At this point, I would describe myself as unconsciously incompetent, meaning I don’t know what I don’t know.
I think the next best thing for me is to review the Education section on this site and try to create a simple, basic strategy that I can back test. I have been fairly stagnant for the last two years as I watched YouTube videos (primarily from Trade Empowered), read books such as The Ultimate Day Trader by Jacob Bernstein, and lurked in forums such as this.
This weekend my goal is to create a trading strategy. I am not sure what the strategy will be yet but I do the following:
- The simplicity of trading support and resistance levels is appealing
- Moving average crossover trades are appealing again because of their simplicity
- I have a hard time spotting harmonic patterns, so I don’t want to center around those just yet
- I am not afraid to admit when I am wrong and need to start over
Wish me luck everyone!
Edit 10/15/17: Due to some unpleasantness with a certain member, I need to clarify some things. First, @TradeViper and @cndlstckchic are my trading mentors, and they have free reign to post whatever they want in this thread as long as it is within community rules. I trust them and I value their wisdom, opinions, and feedback.
Second, if you feel the need to be a jerk to people, please read the entire thread first so that you have a proper understanding of the context in which to be a jerk. I will still flag you and write a 1,000-word post chastising you for being a jerk as well as flag your every single post in this thread for moderation, but at least you will understand the context of the thread.