Mental Game - Practice Trading

Trading is truly a mental game. It used to take me many hours to do backtesting of a stock and I found when I do not continually do my practice trading, my funded trading suffers. One has to pay particular attention especially during stressful or tumultuous times to be sure to continually practice.

Now, how I define practice is to make it as real life as possible. The only difference between practice and funded trading is the funds. The entries, exits, position size, option, everything should be the same.

In my practice trading, the Bracket Trading sheets I use I still use. I had narrowed down the time to about 1 hr for 1 side of the bracket sheet which consisted of 5-6 weeks worth of data. But, still an hr was too long for 5-6 weeks and often due to my very busy erratic schedule, it was a challenge to put in the time.

So, with some big costs in the market, I knew that I had to take a step back and figure out a better way for me to get my practice sessions in EVERY day. I found that usually the first month's worth of trading wasn't all that great for any stock I traded, but by the 2nd month, it was much better. So, for me, a minimum of about 2.5+ months is needed to get into the momentum of things.

We'll see if this method of practice works.

There is something about writing things down that helps me. I do various forms of practice, so I might as well share with you what those are:

STOP DRILLS (NON-DOCUMENTED) - Very Quick
- Chart
- Draw trend, support & resistance lines, targets
- Place stops (I use stop dots) on the chart
- Do this for several months (can be done in 1/2 hr)
- Purpose: To know where to place your stops

QUICK ENTRY & STOP DRILLS - DOCUMENTED
- Chart
- Draw trend, support & resistance lines, targets
- Place contingent entries
- Once filled, document date, entry price, direction
- Place stops on chart
- Once stopped out, document date, exit price, profit/cost or break even, amount
- Do this for at least 2.5 months (can be done in 1/2 hr)

FULL DOCUMENTATION
- Chart
- Draw trends, support & resistance lines, targets
- Get Bracket Trading Sheet
- Document each day with date, bracket entries, stops, options, quantity, costs, profits on the Bracket Trading Sheets
- Document at least the brackets & stops on the chart. You can document the other stuff, too, if you have time, but this take a bit of time to do.
- Do this for at least 2 months (5-6 weeks takes about an hr if you're efficient)

With the Full Documentation, you start off UNFUNDED, then move to small, funded positions, then fully funded. Do NOT skip steps.
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