How To Look At Missed Trading Opportunities
In the Forex market or when trading any market, there is a general feeling from traders (mostly new swing traders) that they have to be involved in every single opportunity and every trade that comes across their desk! In reality, you probably won’t catch every single move because life happens.
Everyone needs to get out! See people! Your FAMILY! You might like them. Most traders struggle with this because they have experienced the heart-wrenching pain of watching a trade they “should’ve” been in move without them. Psychologically this isn’t easy to deal with because it is money that SHOULD’VE been made. FOMO is real.
I struggled with this for a long time and still feel that way when I miss great trades that looked like free money. But I have to quickly pull myself out of that hindsight mentality because you’ll often miss opportunities that come straight after that. I’m sure you can relate to that?
As soon as you get hung up on a past trade, good or bad, you REMOVE YOURSELF FROM THE PRESENT, which is where you need to be to pull the trigger on trades effectively.
Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda
This is not an attitude that only affects new traders. It can even hamper the most seasoned traders. A missed opportunity could cost you $100 or $1000 or $10,000. For a well-capitalized trader, that missed opportunity could mean $100,000 or $1 million that they never got a chance to bank.
They cannot allow that to cloud their state of mind. They literally cannot AFFORD to focus on what “could’ve” been. They need to be focused on the next trade and working their edge until a great opportunity comes along again. Otherwise, they could miss that one too.
If you want to move past a missed opportunity, you have to accept that you have missed many other opportunities that were not great winners. Instead, these were losing trades that you can be glad you didn’t take when looking back at it.
The Pendulum swings both ways. If you COULD’VE made money on an opportunity but didn’t, then equally at any other point, you COULD’VE lost money but didn’t.
I hope you guys can understand that because it helps me to release the feeling of missing out. Remembering that there are losses that I’ve avoided by missing opportunities, not because I didn’t pull the trigger (which is a problem that must be dealt with on its own) but because life happens, and I was away from the charts.
There's always tomorrow
The fact of the matter is there were opportunities in the market long before you even knew what the market was. Accept that another chance is just around the corner. Try and be there for that one. If you miss that one, ANOTHER one will come. Trade long enough, and you will win.
The traders that were defeated by the markets, were only beaten because they gave up. This is why it’s important to MOVE ON in Forex trading or trading in general. Work your edge and try to detach yourself from the outcome of the individual trades themselves.
Find and execute a process consistently, and you will see that opportunities are simply that! Chances to try your hand, and they will not magically stop occurring because you missed THE BIG ONE or the trade that would’ve made your year because opportunities always exist in the market.
As long as you have the experience and skills to find them, they will always reveal themselves to you. The LONGER you trade and train your eye, the MORE opportunities you will see. It just takes practice and showing up.
The only variable you can affect is showing up! You can’t determine or influence an opportunity to appear in the next 10 mins or the next hour. All you can do is be available and ready to execute when the trade appears.
I know this is easier said than done. However, try to detach from missed opportunities as much as possible because, as I said, YOU NEED TO STAY PRESENT and dwelling on past opportunities won’t help you do that.
Take a look at your system
Last but not least, it helps if your system or strategy doesn’t depend on every winning trade to be PROFITABLE. What I mean is, if one missed opportunity means you become unprofitable, you need to take a look at your system.
Check if your Risk vs. Reward (RR) is working for you or against you. A strategy with a good RR makes it so much easier to stomach a missed opportunity because you know that the next winner will probably pay for any losing trades, AND THEN SOME EXTRA.
So if one missed opportunity means you end up with a minus at the end of the month or year, the missed opportunity was not the problem. Your poor RR was.
The low RR meant that you needed that opportunity to be profitable. It is not sustainable to never miss a trade unless you code a robot that doesn’t need to build relationships and maintain its sanity. Then maybe it’s possible to catch every waking opportunity that the market has to offer.
Don’t bet the farm
Don’t lose your shirt
Cut the L
Keep the W