A very common sight right through school and college was last minute cramming. It was an epidemic. I was more the odd one out, walking around without any books a day before any exam. Reason was, I was convinced that if I was unsure of myself a day before an exam, delving into course-material at that stage would make me feel even more insecure.
“Do you have any coffee?”, whispered someone. This fellow woke me up in the middle of the night, leaving with my entire bottle of instant coffee-powder. He was doing an all-nighter before some board exam. At the cost of not being super-prepared, I preffered to sleep the night.
Interestingly enough, I’ve had the chance to speak to some brides and grooms hours before the knot was tied. Jitters, man. Everyone was jittery, well almost. The most common feeling was “… what if this is the wrong step?” This was followed by “…what if we don’t get along?”
Seriously, people, why moments before the plunge? Why does the human being expose him- or herself to destabilizing thoughts just before pulling the trigger? There’s ample time much, much before, to sort all the destabilizing stuff out while deciding whether one goes ahead with a particular action. Similarly, there’s ample time to study for an exam if one starts from day one. Just an hour a day, throughout the term, and there’s no need for any all-nighters.
If you’re all sorted out and well rested to boot, you then have the best chance of seeing peak-performance emanating from your system.
And that’s what we are looking to be, just before opening a market position.
We’ve sorted out our worries and fears. We know how much risk we can handle, and have systems in place to manage this risk, i.e. we know what we have to do if our trade goes bad. Also, we know how to behave when a trade does well. We are aware about the size of the position we need to put on as an appropriate ratio to our stack-size. We’ve tuned in to the idea of position-sizing, and are practising it as we win more or lose more. Basically, we have our basics in order.
After that, we have to see whether we actually feel like trading. Even when our trading system identifies a set-up, the innate go-ahead to trade might just not come from within. There can be some reason for this. For example, there could be some tension prevailing at home. Sort out the external disturbance to the level of closure if you can, or it might constantly disturb trading.
So, internal sorting out, external sorting out, then comes a trade set-up, and one takes the trade. No jitters, here, there, anywhere. All jitter-causing avenues have been chewed up and digested. That’s when triggers can be pulled when they appear.
When Mrs. Market asks you to ride alongside her, your bag should be packed already. You can then jump on to her motor-bike without worries, for you’ve packed well for the trip.