Stress is a powerful emotion and it is not one that will shy away from forex traders or any other traders, in fact, it can take a hold of us no matter what it is that we are doing, even something as simple as making a sandwich. You sometimes see those people who never experience it, and generally, we hate it, but what we see is not always the truth, just because we do not see them reacting to stress in the way that we expect, it does not mean that they are not experiencing it.
People can develop ways to deal with stress, so while it may not seem like they are experiencing any, they actually are, they just are able to deal with it. It is important that you are able to deal with your stress levels, if they manage to get too high it can potentially cause you to make rash and irrational decisions which could then be detrimental to your overall trading strategy and profitability. Everyone deals with stress in different ways so it is important that you work out the way that you will be able to deal with it.
We are going to be looking at a number of different ways that people can help deal with their stress, some may work for you, some may not, but they are certainly effective for some.
The first thing that you need to be able to do is to acknowledge and accept that you are experiencing some stress, the earlier that you are able to do this the better. Admit to yourself that you are feeling stressed, anxious, or that things are just simply too much for you. Once you are able to accept that you are experiencing stress, you will then be able to begin to work on getting over it or controlling it. Think about the last time you felt stress, what did you experience? Some people have a faster heart rate, some people get headaches and some people begin to sweat. You need to understand your signs and how they manifest themselves if you are going to be able to recognise stress and then acknowledge it.
You then need to accept that you are experiencing these emotions, just because people have seen the signs, does not mean that they want to accept that they are going through it. Some people like to suggest that they do not experience stress, they never have before but that is simply not true, some people like to believe that they do not, they like to allow others to believe what they do not, but they most certainly do. Accept that you are going through it and you will be able to offer a better deal with it instead of keeping things inside and letting them grow.
If you feel that you are going through some stress or can feel in building, then it is important that you stop trading when going through these emotions can lead to some very rash decisions that could potentially put your account in danger. Stress can make you throw whatever risk management that you have out of the window and to put on larger, more risky trades, not something that anyone should be doing.
Take a step back, there is no harm in stepping away from the computer or your trading station when you are feeling these emotions. In fact, it would be recommended. Take a break, be it 5 minutes, 10 minutes, an hour, or until the next day. Go outside, go for a walk, all of these things will help you to clear your mind and to get a fresher look at the markets. Taking your mind away from the thing that is causing you the stress is the best way of reducing it, of course, then simply coming back can simply bring on the stress again, so there need to be ways for you to be able to control them and to know exactly what it is that is causing the stress.
The next and one of the most important things that you need to be able to do is to identify what it is that is causing you to stress, the sources of your stress. The sooner that you are able to work out what it is that is causing you the stress, the sooner that you will be able to avoid it or to eliminate it completely.
The problem is that it can be quite hard to actually work out what it is that is causing you the stress, due to this it is important that you take a journal. You were probably told to create a trading journal, what you need to do is add a little section to it where you can indicate your current feelings, every time that you are feeling a little stressed, write it down, you will then be able to use this to see any patterns. Maybe you are feeling it each time you have a loss, each time the markets go against you, or if a certain someone comes over to visit and distracts you from your trading.
If you are able to notice and pinpoint a trend or a reason as to why you are getting stressed, you can then look at ways to reduce or avoid it. Some things like losses cannot be avoided, but you are able to train yourself to have a better understanding of your overall strategy, losses should be a part of that and how to deal with them. If it’s a person interrupting your trading, then, ask them to not come during your trading times. There are little things that you will be able to do, and it is important that you understand what they are.
You won’t be able to remove every source of stress, that would be impossible, and some levels of stress can actually be good for you and can help you to concentrate more, but the most important thing is that you get an understanding of what the sources of your stress are, this way you can manage yourself to not allow those stresses to take over your trading. Try to avoid trading stress and you will be able to be a calmer and ultimately more successful trader.