My Essential Tips for THIS Type of Trader
You made it to the final installment! Congrats.
Yesterday I covered with you the first four of my five moves for succeeding with part time trading.
But I didn’t give you the final one…
We’ll cover the fifth one today. And then I’m going to go over with you some key tips before you get started.
Maybe you’re a newbie or maybe you’re a season part-time trader…
Either way these are still good resources (or a refresher!) to have under your belt…
#5 Set a Specific Time for Your Trades
It’s possible to establish yourself as a trader even if you have full-time obligations. However, when your time is limited, you have to be intelligent about making the most of what you have.
You may not be able to be in front of a trading monitor during the week, especially if you have a traditional 9–5 job. So it’s all about embracing alerts, automation, and having specific plans in place.
Most importantly, make sure that you set aside specific times for doing stock research. Make use of your free time on the weekends, in the mornings, or in the evenings.
If you have a watchlist, dedicate yourself to finding promising candidates. Make trading plans to follow when the time is right. It’s also a good idea to embrace tools like price alerts that can signal you when a watchlist stock price hits your strike zone.
Finally, embrace automation. If you have a trading plan in place, you don’t necessarily need to be at your computer to execute trades. You can set automated orders to buy and sell if and when a security reaches your desired entry or exit points.
A platform like StocksToTrade can be like your own trading personal assistant. The platform can monitor prices for you, and you can place limit orders to buy and put stop losses or trailing stops on your orders to sell if the stock reaches a certain price.
Actually, this can be one of the benefits of part-time trading: limited hours can keep you from over-trading.
Remember: Just because you can trade doesn’t mean you should. Don’t be blinded by FOMO or a need for the adrenaline rush that can come with executing a trade. After trading for a while, you may find which time of day is most valuable for your trading, too.
Key Part-Time Trading Tips
When time is at a premium, you’ve gotta use it wisely. Here are some of my key tips for trading part-time:
Stick to Your Trading Plan
As my students know very well, I’m a fan of having a plan. A trading plan, that is.
The phrase ‘trading plan’ alone should give you a good idea of what it is. It’s a written plan where you plot out a course of action for a given trade.
Everyone will have a slightly different approach to formulating a trading plan. In general, it should include your hypothesis for why the trade is a good idea, a clearly defined goal, and your research to back it up.
You also want to build in the basics, like anticipated entry and exit points. You should decide where you’ll exit if the gains reach your goal and establish a stop loss (whether mental or real) in the event that you need to cut losses.
A trading plan isn’t a guarantee of success, but it can help you approach trades in a balanced way.
It edges you out of the lazy zone — just making a trading plan forces you to do some research. And it can help curb greed. When you predetermine entry and exit points, you’re less likely to give into the ‘hold and hope’ mentality that can make you stay in a position too long.
A trading plan is always a helpful tool, but it’s only effective if you stick to it.
So, print out your trading plan, keep it nearby. Tattoo it on your forehead if you need to. Stick to it! When you deviate from the plan and make spur-of-the-moment changes, things can go sour fast. Don’t get greedy and don’t be lazy. Just stick to the plan.
Trade Only Patterns You Master
There are many different patterns out there to trade. If you try to tackle them all, you’ll end up being a jack of all trades, master of none.
One of the best pieces of advice that any trader — whether full-time or part-time — can follow is to stick with a few key patterns. Yes, you want to learn as many patterns as possible. But when it comes to practice, focus on just a few at a time.
Honing your methods with a few key patterns will ultimately help you cultivate a deeper knowledge of each pattern’s subtleties. In short, it can make you a smarter trader.
There’s plenty of time to learn more patterns. The markets will change. That means the opportunity to branch out and try different patterns. Or you may find that your style evolves and you gravitate toward different ones.
That’s fine, too.
Don’t Trade Too Big
Not to be a downer, but this is critical: Any amount of money that you put into a trade can potentially be lost. So never trade too big.
Now, what’s ‘too big’ is totally relative. It depends on your style and your account size. But here’s the basic idea: Don’t risk too much of your account on any one trade.
I understand that if you’re just starting out with a small account, you may have a strong desire to build your account fast. It can be tempting to go for big, impactful trades with the small amount of capital you have.
Cool down. It’s OK to focus on small wins.
Even if your profit is just $5 after commissions and capital gains, there’s value in that. Small wins can add up over time, and you can increase your positions gradually while gaining invaluable experience.
Never Stop Learning
Money isn’t the only currency involved in trading. In fact, knowledge might be even more valuable.
Trading isn’t the type of career where you can rise up through the ranks with regular advances and promotions. The market is in a constant state of flux that you have to learn to ride and adapt to. Even the tools that traders use are always evolving.
So, don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s possible to reach a point where you know everything about trading. That can never happen due to the ever-changing nature of the market.
Rather than fight it, make a commitment to always keep learning. If you can make that commitment and stick with it, you’ll have an advantage over many other new traders right from the beginning.
In committing to be a lifelong student of the market, you can learn to adapt and grow with the market.
I’ve been trading for decades, and I learn new things every day. My students teach me; the news teaches me; stock performance teaches me.
The Bottom Line
Regardless of how many hours you can devote to trading, it’s possible to find a positive routine. Even part-time trading has the potential to teach you how to be a smarter trader — as long as you’re dedicated, disciplined, and determined.
However, it’s only through time and practice that you can really hit your stride as a trader. It’s super important to be calculated in your approach.
Focus on educating yourself on the market so that you can perfect your techniques over time.
— Tim Sykes
Editor, Penny Stock Millionaires