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The Chocolate Chip Cookie Day Trade
If you are a red blooded American male of a certain age eventually your metabolism will simply stop working. It doesn’t matter that you bench press 350 pounds every week. It doesn’t matter that you take 20,000 steps each day. It doesn’t matter that you eat only boiled eggs for breakfast. You will start getting fat. The belly will expand, the suit pants will be a little tighter and you will look nostalgically at those high school photos of yourself when you could swallow a whole pizza for a snack and still maintain body fat of less than 5%.
Such is life. If you want to stay anywhere near your fighting weight you will have to become much more disciplined about your diet. You will eat only two meals a day. You will avoid desserts like the plague and carbs will now become your enemy number one, even though without them you turn into a raging maniac at work and home.
But no matter how well you diet. No matter how healthy you eat. No matter how committed you are to your daily regimen you will come across the magic smell of a chocolate chip cookie sooner or later and unless you have the willpower of Gandhi you will take a bite of it and wolf it down like the red blooded American male that you are.
If you day trade 20 hours a day like I do than this is what to do.
You keep your size small. You always honor your stop. You keep an ear out for news and have one eye on price action at all times. And most importantly you trade your setup. Over and over again.
But sometimes the markets are slow. There are no setups to trade. You get restless. Antsy. You become bored and you need to connect with the market to keep your focus sharp. So you start playing the “what if” game. What if I went long here? What if I went short the cross to offset it? Looks good -- let me just give it a try…
There is no day trader in the world that hasn’t done the “bored trade” at least once every few days or weeks. The “bored trade” is the chocolate chip cookie of day trading. You know it’s bad for you. You know you will just pay for it with empty calories or lost dollars but in the end you don’t care. You need to do it. You need that small hit of guilty pleasure.
And you know what?
In trading as in life you should never let the perfect become the enemy of the good. We are not robots and don’t have to be in order to succeed. As long you eat just one or two cookies, or make just one or two dumb trades a week you’ll still maintain your fighting shape and will be ready to tackle both life and markets no worse for the wear.