Be You

Years of my trading career have been lost by trying to be something or someone I’m not.

  • I wanted to be a rich stockbroker like the guys I’d seen in movies and on the news.
  • I wanted to be a successful daytrader like those guys I read about in Forbes in 1998.
  • I wanted to make $500 a day like the guy across the table from me at my first prop firm.
  • I wanted to be a famous hedge fund manager like Richard Dennis.
  • I wanted to be a wildly successful Exchange Member like the guys I saw in my office every day at the Chicago Board of Trade.
  • I wanted to be like Paul Tudor Jones, Tony Saliba, and the Turtle Traders I read about in Market Wizards.
  • I wanted to be an options trader like Danny Sheridan or Tom Sosnoff.
  • I wanted to be like guys I follow on social media.

I’ve been inspired by and wanted to be like all kinds of people throughout my career. But I didn’t start becoming the Trader I am now until I just started to be myself.

It wasn’t until I looked inward and honestly at the type of risk-taking I’m comfortable with. It wasn’t until I did a reassessment of my true strengths (not the ones I aspire to have). It wasn’t until I created a workflow that actually works with my time constraints (not in spite of them). It wasn’t until I convinced myself that trying to be somebody I’m not might work in the short term, but is doomed in the long run.

We might be able to fake it to the world for a little while, but we can’t fake ourselves forever.

It’s exhausting to be something we’re not. And it pulls energy away from what we are — energy that if harnessed could truly transform ourselves into EPIC stock market performers. The truth is, we are all unique in some way and we all have something that nobody else has got. And if we zero in on what that is, I promise we can find a way to express that in the marketplace.

Are you an introvert? Maybe this means you like to invest in cyclical dividend paying stocks while quietly working your data entry job in a cubicle tucked away in the corner of the office.

Are you an extrovert? Maybe this means you daytrade cryptocurrencies from your mobile phone at a Starbucks in the center of town.

Are you cautious? Maybe this means you trade one setup per day that you know in and out and can do in your sleep. You work that setup to death, ignore everything else, and will gladly sit on your hands for five days straight if the setup doesn’t prevent itself.

Are you aggressive? Maybe you day trade weekly options on stocks getting pumped on reddit, or maybe you’re on the hunt for pumped up and heavily shorted penny stocks?

Are you here for entertainment? Maybe you find all the stocks the kids are talking about on StockTwits and put on piker trades just so you can shitpost about them with skin in the game?

Or maybe you’re just trying to impress your friends by sharing the trials and tribulations of investing and trading in all the household megacap stocks.

No matter our motives, there are an infinite amount of ways to make money in the market. There is opportunity every single minute the market is open. If there’s a bid and an offer — game on!

But true success for you, just like success for me, will not be attainable until we truly come to terms with who we are, and how we express our true selves in the market.

We can’t be anything until we can be ourselves.

Be you.

~ @chicagosean

Need help finding out who you are? Come hike with me.