Even when life and the stock market are ‘normal’ it can be tough to maintain trading motivation…
I think it’s safe to say that we all realize we’re living in historic times … And when it comes to trading the stock market, both pros and cons come with that.
One positive is the stock movements we haven’t really seen before. If you know what you’re doing, the crazy volatility can create some incredible trading opportunities.
(Learn how to better trade through volatility with this new video I did with Tim Sykes. Get your no-cost access to “The Volatility Survival Guide” here!)
And, although being stuck at home during the pandemic is a challenge, it gives a lot of people more time to study the stock market and learn a new skill.
But there are unique challenges right now…
A lot of trading is a mental and emotional game. In this pandemic, those emotions are amplified. If you don’t manage your thoughts and emotions wisely, your motivation can dry up FAST … and so can your trading account.
Today, let’s look at some things we all can do to keep our trading motivation on point during the lockdown.
Table of Contents
- 1 #1 Set Up a Routine
- 2 #2 Meditation and Trading Motivation
- 3 #3 Dream About the Future
- 4 #4 Take Small Steps
- 5 #5 Focus on the Right Things
- 6 #6 Journal Daily
- 7 #7 Don’t Forget to Set Your Risk
- 8 #8 Be Selective With Your Trades
- 9 #9 Focus on Your Wins
- 10 #10 Take Breaks
- 11 #11 Find Your Trading Motivation Community
- 12 #12 Buddy System
- 13 #13 Make Time to Study
- 14 #14 Exercise
- 15 #15 Family & Friends
- 16 Conclusion
#1 Set Up a Routine
One challenge of this lockdown is that it’s easy to lose track of time. I know people who keep forgetting what freakin’ day it is!
This can really play with your psyche and make you feel like you’re not doing anything with your life. Let’s face it … when you don’t have much structure to your day, it’s easy to get distracted. The next thing you know, most of the day is gone and you haven’t accomplished anything.
Having a routine helps you stay aware of what you’re doing with your day and can give you more control. Being stuck at home without a trading routine is like shooting at a target in the dark.
Spend 30 minutes at night to plan out the next day. Create a routine that helps you move toward your goals, then keep tweaking and improving it. You can’t control time, but you can better manage what you do with it. And the momentum you build can increase your motivation and confidence.
I know this has to sound weird for some … but hey, I think it really works!
With all the negativity that’s happening around the world, it’s really easy to let ourselves get caught up in it. That can be the biggest motivation killer.
We gotta protect our brains by taking time to adjust our thinking. I don’t care how that looks to you — yoga, praying, or sitting quietly for 30 minutes. Take some time to reset your mind and relax your body. It can help refill your motivation tank.
#3 Dream About the Future
Listen … the trading journey can be super painful even without a pandemic. The things that keep successful traders going are the potential rewards that come with trading consistently.
Remind yourself why you started trading in the first place. What could your life look like if you had an extra means to bring in income? Are there special trips you’d like to take? What kinds of freedom could trading well potentially bring you?
Keeping your dreams in focus will give you fuel to push through hard times.
#4 Take Small Steps
We’re in a marathon and not a sprint. If you’re gonna be a smart trader, it’s gotta be a long-term commitment. And marathon runners don’t use up all their energy at the beginning of the race.
Taking small steps and setting small goals is a great way to pace yourself and protect your trading motivation.
Small goals are easy to attain. And the more goals you accomplish, the more you strengthen your confidence and motivation. Remember those small wins add up in a lot of ways!
#5 Focus on the Right Things
Focusing on the right things is key for motivation. Doing the right things will get you more wins and protect you from losses.
For instance, in this market, fundamental analysis isn’t working like it did before the pandemic. Companies are so unsure of the future, they aren’t even providing guidance with their earnings reports.
To catch the moves in the market requires a solid understanding of technical analysis. So spend time studying charts! It’s a smart practice for every day trader.
#6 Journal Daily
Being locked down in our homes can distort our outlooks. And you’re gonna need to be self-aware to give yourself a chance to move forward.
I think a trading journal is great. It’s a good way to figure out what’s working for you in the markets. That changes, right? Journaling is a great way to track it all. It’s one way you can help yourself gain perspective and take those small steps.
Being aware of your mistakes gives you the power to make adjustments. On the flip side, being aware of your wins can set your motivation into overdrive.
#7 Don’t Forget to Set Your Risk
Building motivation is important — but you also have to protect the motivation you already have. Big losses can chip away at your mindset.
Don’t get lazy during the lockdown. Make sure you assess your risk for every trade and stick to your trading plan and stop loss. If you need practice, try paper trading until you feel comfortable enough to use real money.
If you don’t respect your risk, you can end up bagholding for the whole pandemic.
Nothing kills your account — and in turn your motivation — like overtrading.
Being stuck at home can make it easy to overtrade. Never trade just because you’re bored. Know your setups and only trade when a good setup comes to you.
#9 Focus on Your Wins
Even the best MLB baseball hitters miss more balls than they hit. One reason these guys are so successful? They focus on their successes and refuse to dwell on their misses.
Their focus on wins builds up their confidence. So every time they step up to the plate, they believe they’re gonna connect.
The same lesson applies to trading. It’s important to learn from your mistakes — but don’t let them destroy your confidence. Remember your wins and believe that it can happen again and again. Focusing on your wins more than your mistakes is key to driving up your trading motivation.
#10 Take Breaks
It’s easy to go down the rabbit hole when you’re focused on trading. If you’re not careful, your judgment can get cloudy.
How can you stay fresh and prevent burnout? Step away from the screens and get your mind off trading. Do something that you enjoy and decompress. Get outside, move your body, read a book — whatever you enjoy.
While you’re at it, refuel your body with good food and hydrate well.
#11 Find Your Trading Motivation Community
The moves we’re seeing in this market are surprising even the most experienced traders. Don’t go it alone!
Being part of a community is one of the best things you can do for your motivation. Surrounding yourself with like-minded individuals who put in the hard work can give you that extra push you need to improve. When you can share ideas and see different perspectives, it accelerates your learning process.
At StocksToTrade Pro, we meet live twice every trading day to prepare, ask questions, and encourage one another. It’s super helpful, and our goal is to be the best trading community available.
If you’re not ready for StocksToTrade Pro, join me on Instagram Live where I share ideas and answer questions. I was planning to stop my Instagram Live sessions at the end of April … But the response has been so great, I’ve extended it! I’ll be there most trading days starting at 8:30 a.m Eastern. Pop in and say hi or ask your burning trading question!
#12 Buddy System
The great thing about being in a community is that you meet all different types of people with different skill sets.
When you meet someone you click with, it’s a good idea to build a closer relationship. It’s one way you can develop a higher level of accountability. These types of relationships not only increase trading motivation but allow you to share trading plans and ideas in more detail.
A great place to meet other traders: the StocksToTrade Pro chat room. It’s a fantastic way to help build these types of relationships.
#13 Make Time to Study
If you’re gonna be successful at trading the stock market, you have to look at it as a business. And as many business owners know, it’s really easy to get lost working in your business and stop working on your business.
Studying is a great way to work on your business. Your market education never ends. This year is great evidence of that. So make sure you do everything you can to keep up. It also can boost your motivation as you continue to see improvements.
Make time each day to build your knowledge and skill set.
Like it or not, your health will affect your trading — and your trading motivation.
Being locked in your house and sitting at your computer all day isn’t healthy. It will eventually break down your body and mind.
I’m not saying you gotta workout hardcore every day … but at least get up and take a walk. Find something that helps you stay active during this lockdown.
#15 Family & Friends
Last — and definitely not least — you gotta make time for family and friends.
This pandemic and its effects have been incredibly stressful for a lot of people. It’s easy to feel like the world is ending. But talking to and connecting with the important people in your life can provide some balance.
Trading can be both fun and grueling, but it shouldn’t be the reason you live. Spend time with the people you care about even if it’s on a video call … and remember that life is still moving forward.
There you have it — my tips on how to keep your trading motivation up during this lockdown.
It’s true that none of us have been in a situation or market quite like this. But we’re not totally out of control. We all can do our best to come out the other side successfully.
If we build and manage our motivation, we can continue making good decisions, build good habits, and at minimum learn in this environment.
If you aren’t part of the StocksToTrade Pro community, I’d love for you to join us as we push through this pandemic together. Like I said, we meet twice every trading day to prepare and learn.
How are you staying motivated through the lockdown? Let me know in the comments below!