An issue many traders run into is finding the right time to trade and spending the right about of time trading. Traders who are just starting out might still be working a 9-5 job or going to school full time, making it hard to trade the New York open. Maybe you live in a different time zone or maybe your like me who can really only spend about 3-4 hours trading a day. Its not that I don't/can't trade all day its simply that I found a period/length of time that is most lucrative for me. Lets find out how we can find a period of time that could be lucrative for you!
Get real with your self
Lets be real if you have a hard time focusing or sitting still, then spending 10 hours in front of the screens isn't going to be a possibility. This is where you need to figure out what time of the day works best for you in terms of trading. I personally like to trade the open and almost all my trades take place in the first 30-45 minutes of the New York trading session. Since finding out what time works best for me, I make sure to only trade this time. As previously stated in other blogs, this all comes down to your rules. Add to your rules when you will be trading, for example if you add to your rules you are only going to trade the New York open then you better not place trades during the overnight or ETH (electric trading hours) trading session.
How long can you focus on the charts?
Now that you know when you are going to trade it is now time to figure out how long you're going to trade. This is where your trading journal will come and help you out. There are a few different ways to figure out the perfect amount of time for you. First go back and look at your journal and make a list of all your losing trades in the past 6 month. Once you have this list go and look at the time these trades where placed and mark them all now. Next go and see if you can find an average if these times. If you find the average time you start taking losing trades is 12:00 pm everyday then this should show you that you need to be done before 12:00 PM. Will you miss out of some trades, %100 you will but in the long run you will come out on top because you are leveraging the time you perform the best. Once you find this out you need to add it to your rules. For example you will only trade from 8:30 AM- 12:00PM every day or a max of 3 and a half hours everyday. After adding this to your set of rules you then need to make sure you follow it!
It can be hard to walk away from a day where you are killing it but you know after looking back at your journal, that after your allotted trading time is up you start making mistakes.
Change your view on trading
For many traders, trading is something we love to do and don't mind spending hours and hours perfecting our craft. But lets be real for a minute do we really need to spend that amount of time every single day in front of the computer.. NO! Trading needs to be looked at as a tool, it helps us use or money to leverage our time so we don't have to spend 8 hours at a job. Get your money and enjoy your day with family,friends or relaxing!