Goals for the New Year

Do you want to be a Top Performer in the coming year?

What attributes are required to become part of the elite, the fortunate – a successful and confident trader that can take control of your financial destiny? Here are a few of the most common traits I’ve run across when I meet and talk to the pros. How do you rate? Think about your approach in the coming year and keep these things in mind.

Brain Power – these are the raw materials and building blocks of your potential. You don’t have to be a genius, or anything near a 4.0 student for that matter, but you have to be able to analyze, formulate and implement. How quickly can you grasp a concept and take action? How easily are you defeated? Can you adapt? What challenges have you overcome to accomplish something meaningful? How have you applied your abilities to a task to innovate, overcome or increase the odds in your favor? These are all important as you approach the markets and work through your trade plan development. Pros are always willing to learn and admit their mistakes. They know trading is a process and skill that must be learned just like any other.

Values – Even if you are brilliant, if you lack integrity and empathy you are doomed to fail. Are you inspired or jealous? Do you take credit or give it away? You must have an awareness of others and be honest, show compassion, and be respectful and decent. Having a purpose and the desire to make a difference can take you to places very few are able or willing to go. Pros know that helping others helps them; that giving is a prerequisite of receiving and that selfishness and greed are the enemies of success.

Passion – You need a fire burning deep within you that creates a passion and enthusiasm. Either you have it or it eludes you. Your spirit and energy are infectious – both positive and negative. Are you helping or hurting; an optimist or pessimist? You need a sense of urgency, but without doubt or panic. Do you ignite the passion of others or suck the life out of them? Can you motivate others to attempt the impossible and achieve beyond their own limiting beliefs? Can you do the same for yourself? Pros are passionate – always doing their best to be a positive influence with a strong commitment to improve the trading profession.

Work ethic – What have you sacrificed to perform at the highest level of excellence? Are you a procrastinator or do you get the job done now with focus and diligence? Most people settle for average because it is the path of least resistance. Your work ethic is not just something you adopt to earn a living, but it can actually define the outcomes in your life. Where you are right now is the direct result of your energy and effort. Could you do more and be more? What are you waiting for? You must be willing to do what it takes in spite of obstacles and challenges. Pros know trading takes time and effort. They never give up and know that persistence beats resistance.

Experience – This simply comes with time – with paying your dues and paying attention to someone that has done it before. It’s interesting that experience can be gained exclusive of the other attributes previously mentioned. No one can give you more intellect, better values, passion or a stronger work ethic. That is why those are all so self-important. But they can give you experience by providing an opportunity to learn; or sharing from their own experiences. Pros try to shorten the learning curve of others through encouragement, advice and patience. Get out of your own way and listen to them.

So . . . you want to be a pro? . . . a successful trader? Figure out where your strengths and weaknesses are when thinking about the above. What are you doing to get there? How are you interacting or behaving every day to set a standard that can be appreciated and respected by others?

I have found that most pros worth their salt have it all together and fit nicely into the attributes I’ve described. If I meet one that does not, I do not invest any time at all in what they say or do – whether they are making money or not. Money is a big motivator, but not the end-all.

My suggestion is to start setting standards for yourself and others that will get you where you want and need to be. Do not compromise. You’ll find things will begin to change for the positive and fall into place.

Always remember you reap what you sow and deserve what you accept.

Want more and do more for yourself and others.

Rick

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