“It's a fundamental shift in attitude that accounts for their success, not some brilliant realization about the market, as most people erroneously assume. This erroneous assumption is prevalent among traders simply because very few of them really understand, at the deepest levels, just how critical a component attitude is in determining one's success.”

July 31

Sim: +3.50pts / +$55 net.

Along with being disappointed about my trading, I've been very busy with other work, so I probably won't be making a final post about Combine #5 until this weekend.

I had planned to take some time off from trading to clear my head, but I found myself very unhappy. So for the time being, I won't start another Combine, but I will do some trading in my Stage 5 sim account.

I don't have a specific plan for my trading at this point, but I'm going to post my sim results (as my stomach allows) along with the charts I'm using at the time.

Today my attitude was that I didn't care if I took a trade or not. I planned to spend an hour watching the market and then be done.

My first trade was a reversal off of one of my marked levels – it happened to be the overnight low. Right now my target is 3.00pts, and price reached it.

My second trade was an attempt to catch what I thought was going to be a break lower into the next level(s) below. Price had made several attempts to move higher in the session but was running into resistance from the HTF downtrend that was still in place. I was stopped out to the tick before price went back in my direction.

My third trade was very late and risky, but price was powering lower. My target was reached within seconds. Finished for the day.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 20

Combine #5, Day 20: +6.50pts / +$35 net.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 19

Combine #5, Day 19: -7.50pts / -$175 net

My first trade was appropriate but it turned around and stopped me out after moving to within a few ticks of my target.

After that loss, I believe that the need to get my money back right away and the fear of missing out on possible redemption trades fueled my remaining actions today. These psychological aspects caused me to disregard what my charts were saying and fight the morning trend.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 18

Combine #5, Day 18: +2.00pts / +$20 net.

My trade management is what prevented me from having a larger profit today. Each of the 3 trades that were taken as a result of my new approach were full winners if left alone (which I did on my last trade).

It’ll take some time and experience to develop a management approach that will work well enough, often enough.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 17

Combine #5, Day 17: +3.00pts / +$55 net.

Last week was frustrating for me, but I maintained a relatively good overall attitude which I believe is crucial if I'm going to succeed.

I've been focusing on a couple of work projects that I have going on, but I've still been working on my trading every day (last weekend included). After Friday I knew that I was barking up the wrong tree and that I had allowed myself to go into frustration mode.

I've been doing a much better job with my attitude in general lately and I was able to quickly get over the bad days I'd had and move on. I took a step back with regard to the way I've been approaching my trading and looked for a better way to do things. And I believe that I've found it.

Over the past few days I've been trading in my Stage 5 sim account to test what I'm doing and I'm seeing decent results. It'll be a while before I know for sure if this is something that will continue to work for me, but for the time being I'll keep doing it.

Today I took one winning trade in my Combine account, and then because I didn't want to risk losing the profits I'd made, I took another trade in my Stage 5 sim account - it was a winner too.

So, even though my TST Trade Report will only reflect the 3.00 points I made in my Combine account, it's important for me to recognize that I made another 3.00 points in my sim account.

I'll probably trade in my Combine account again tomorrow.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Days 15 & 16

Combine #5, Day 15: -12.50pts / -$290 net.

What I'm doing just isn't working.

Combine #5, Day 16: -20.00pts / -$480 net.

After a frustrating day yesterday, I decided that today I would do the opposite - and I did it with a vengeance. That doesn't work.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 14

Combine #5, Day 14: +2.75pts / +$10 net.

A bit of a rough day today. My last trade was the one I needed so I could recover for the day, but it really tested me. It moved to within 1 tick of my stop initially, then it moved to within 1 tick of my target, then it moved back nearly to my stop again – frustrating. It took 24 minutes, but it eventually reached my target and that made my day.

However, I wouldn’t have been in this position if I hadn’t taken a couple of low probability (and impulsive) trades earlier in the session. I’m getting better at knowing the areas and patterns that usually give me problems, but I became a little impatient and did some flailing.

Still, I did a good job of regaining my composure, avoiding most other poor areas, and taking a few more good trades.

TopstepTrader Combine #5, Day 13

Combine #5, Day 13: +2.75pts / +$40 net.

Not a lot of profit, but I avoided poor areas, and the trades I did take were solid and per my plan – so not a bad day.
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