Hirschhorn: 2011 Resolutions

The New Year is often a time of reflection. But this year, I want you to look ahead. In fact, as the year 2010 comes to an end, it's time for traders to make resolutions that will drive them to perform even better in 2011. Here are eleven trader resolutions you can put into play in the coming year:

  1. I will begin each trading day by asking myself, “Is today a day to make money, limit losses, or do nothing? And then I will trade that way.
  2. I will be aware of my fear and recognize when I’m trading out of fear.
  3. I will stay objective by asking myself, “If I had no position on, what would I do?”
  4. I will listen to myself first and others second, or not at all.
  5. I will trade to make money, not to be right.
  6. I accept that how often I’m right is not as relevant as how much I make when I’m right vs. how much I lose when I’m wrong.
  7. I will manage my risk better by following this simple formula: H+W+P=E (Hoping + Wishing + Praying = Exit the trade).
  8. I will lose money the right way—by using stops.
  9. I will quantify the success of my trade based on the quality of my trading process and not on the profit or loss from it.
  10. I will keep my trades simple. Trading is a game of up, down and sideways. It isn’t complicated, so don’t make it that way.
  11. Finally, I will keep a trading journal.

It’s time to make 2011 your best trading year, yet.


Doug Hirschhorn is the chief executive officer of Edge Consulting, a firm specializing in “Peak Performance Coaching.” He holds a Ph.D. in Psychology with a specialization in sport psychology, and has offices in New York and South Florida. His client list includes elite athletes as well as many of the largest banks, hedge funds and financial institutions in the world. Doug is presently at work on his new book, Street Smarts (Putnam, 2010).

Have a question for Doug? You can reach him through his Web site, DrDoug.com

Disclaimer: Doug Hirschhorn's expertise is in the psychology of achieving peak performance. He is not a financial advisor and does not make trading or investment recommendations or provide trading or investment advice. He is an expert on the mental game. Although Doug Hirschhorn has a Ph.D. in Psychology with a specialization in sport psychology, he is not a licensed psychologist and does not provide therapeutic, clinical or counseling services.