APPLYING THE ART OF MINIMALISM TO THE ART OF TRADING. A series of exploration.
- Posted by chicagosean
- on September 9th, 2010
Trading is hard. Real hard. The battle is taken to you from every direction. You battle the pros on Wall Street, macro economic forces beyond your comprehension, evil robots, system failures, and stupid politicians and governments. You also have to contend with your own mental state, capital constraints, knowledge base, experience, and time commitments.
It is often enough to make even the most eager neophytes and hardened veterans throw their hands in the air, step away from the computer, and swear off trading forever! I’ve been there many times in 13 years.
Recently and in an effort to simplify these challenges, my journey in trading has led me to a growing movement towards MINIMALISM.
For a Trader, this may sound sacrilege! The stereotypical image (often earned) of Traders is that they are hard charging, fast talking materialists who spare no expense to display to the world just how much money they have and earn. Fast boats, faster women, and the fastest cars! 5-star dinners. A condo in the city, a home in the burbs, a vacation home in the Hamptons, and a ski chalet in Sun Valley. Bank accounts offshore. Every toy money can buy. Private Schools for the kids. Country Club memberships for the adults. And a NetJets share of a Gulfstream jet.
While all that sounds great, the lifestyle inflation that accompanies this requires TREMENDOUS overhead. And overhead is the #1 enemy of the successful Trader.
I was unwittingly thrust towards Minimalism mid-way through my trading career when I hit a significant trading slump. I didn’t choose to cut down my lifestyle and expenses – reality (and creditors) made the decision for me. It was a very hard time.
While I’m still (literally) paying for my sins of a past life, these days I’m embracing tenants of Minimalism as a way to guide my trading business for the long term. I still have a long way to go (I haven’t yet thrown out my TV), and I may not adopt every aspect of the Minimalist purists, but there is a lot to learn from those that practice what they preach.
In a series of upcoming blog posts, I will begin discussing methods that Self-Employed Traders can adopt to keep their careers focused via the lens of the Minimalist Movement.
My first post in this series will be an interview with one of my favorite bloggers, Everett Bogue – the author of Far Beyond The Stars. I was turned on to Everett by one of my favorite follows on StockTwits – Michael Bigger (@biggercapital). In a few short months, Everett’s blog and his journey has captivated my imagination. With Michael’s help, we are having a great discussion with Everett learning his outsider’s take on how Minimalism can help Traders structure their lifestyles and businesses.
Please stay tuned and help me spread the word. There are tools below for you to retweet this post and share it on facebook, stumbleupon, and others. The more we share, the more we all benefit. Thanks!
The information in this blog post represents my own opinions and does not contain a recommendation for any particular security or investment. I or my affiliates may hold positions or other interests in securities mentioned in the Blog, please see my Disclaimer page for my full disclaimer.blog comments powered by Disqus
Sean McLaughlin - Editorial, Curation, & Investor Relations Solutions at StockTwits. Also, former Member of the Chicago Board of Trade who trades his own account in Boulder, Colorado. More »
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