How many times have you experienced a negative feeling because a trade is running against you? Did you start sweating at the time? Were you hoping that your trade would reverse – even for a pip of a profit?
The odds are that these first signs of anxiety point toward you being stressed and therefore, indicate that you need to trade less. Confused? Let me clarify. In trading, working harder doesn’t necessarily mean that you will earn more money. In fact, the more trading hours you work – the less profitable you will be. Why? Because more extended hours mean higher stress levels and the higher those levels, the more mistakes you’ll make. The goal is to trade relaxed, not stressed, so that you stack the probabilities and odds in your favour. In this sense, you need to learn how to sell and buy smarter, not harder.
Symptoms of Trading Stressed
Watch out for any of these symptoms when you are trading, and if you notice you have one or more – take a break immediately.
- Nail biting
- Breathing difficulty
- Tense muscles
- Trembling hands
- Loss of appetite or overeating
- Loss of sleep
- Restless sleep
- Urge to drink alcohol.
Remember: the more stressed you are, the more trading mistakes and errors you will make. Dormant fear of failure may awaken, and you will undoubtedly miss good opportunities through making irrational trading decisions. Paralyzed by analyses, you may sit and watch a trade go against you. And when you do act, it may be too late.
One loss becomes another loss and so on. In short, trading while being stressed is akin to successful anti-trading.
However, stress in small amounts can be beneficial because it may heighten your performance when you need it the most. In that sense, you should learn to utilise stress as a tool, and try to make it work for you and not against you. Try to push the boundaries of your comfort zone – slowly widening it, so you feel more comfortable in a stressful environment.
Due to the correlation between the mental and physical states, feeling relaxed puts you in the ideal trading zone. You should try to get into this state-of-mind before you even begin your trading day.
Shallow breathing (or chest breathing) causes a constriction of the chest and lung tissue over time, decreasing oxygen flow and delivery to your tissues. We suggest you practice using deep, rhythmic breathing to expand your diaphragm muscle because breathing through your diaphragm will:
- Help relieve tension during the trading day
- Provide your brain more with more oxygen to perform more complex actions.
When signals of two different frequencies (sounds) are presented – one to each ear – the brain detects phase differences between these signals. This fluctuating rhythm or binaural beat is beneficial to human mind and focus. If you want these beats, you can search for them on YouTube. Bear in mind that you might need a set of good noise cancelling headphones.
Set Your Trading Goals
Always base your trading on realistic expectations and don’t allow trading sins or your ego, direct how you trade. Trading Forex and CFD markets is not your typical day job. The more you trade, the bigger the loss could be. Sometimes not having a position equals to having a profitable position.
If you want to set your goals, know that being specific should yield good results. Being specific means setting your business goals. In my opinion, your business goals should revolve around making a specific revenue or profit on a monthly or yearly basis.
Lower Your Trading Risk
Low-risk trading provides you peace-of-mind and lets you focus on pips rather than money. If something unexpected happens, this simple precaution might save your account and your physical/mental health. Especially during risky events. With XM, you can choose the leverage you will trade with if you are an elective professional trader.
Being inspired gives you energy and drive, which are crucial qualities necessary for enjoying what you do. The more you enjoy what you are doing, the less stressed you will be doing it.
Cheers and trade safe,