Let’s be honest, trading can get discouraging at times. Even professional traders have losing months sometimes, so don’t be too hard on yourself. I think it’s good to remind ourselves sometimes just why it is we do this. A little positivity and fresh focus on the reasons we all got interested in trading can be a very powerful tool to help us get re-focused on what it takes to succeed. It’s also just good to remember why we are doing this, because sometimes, in the middle of the inevitable losing streak, it’s exactly what we need to hear.
The numerous articles and videos on the web about “trading problems” and “why trading is hard” can just be downright discouraging after a while. Yes, trading is hard, we all know that by now. But so is anything else in life worthwhile, and the end goal of becoming a consistently profitable trader is BEYOND worthwhile. To remind you why let’s discuss 10 reasons why being a trader ROCKS HARDER than any other profession that has ever existed.
Table of Contents
1. The most obvious reason: Financial freedom
The term “financial freedom” means more than just having enough money to not have to worry about bills and other everyday problems, it’s also about having REAL freedom. Just thinking about having the ability to make enough money to live comfortably from anywhere in the world, only needing a computer and the internet, is a powerful and motivating thought.
Being a successful trader not only means that you can make a lot of money but much more importantly, it means you have freedom. You have the freedom to essentially do what you want when you want, and you really can’t put a price on that.
2. You’re a Badass.
Traders are people who are looking for a way out. A way out of the ‘Matrix’ that is modern-day work and the 9 to 5 grind. Who wants to spend the majority of their waking life working to make someone else more money than they make themselves? This is the mindset of a trader. He or she sees the world for what it really is and not some fairy tale that society wants them to believe.
Thus, to be a trader, you have to have a mindset that is different from the masses. You are a ‘lone wolf’ who takes a ‘me against the world’ mentality and you don’t care what other people think. Many people, when asked about trading, will simply pass it off as ‘too risky’ or something only an ‘elite group of people can excel in. These people are the masses, the ‘sheep’ who are happy to remain asleep inside of the ‘Matrix’. You, however, want to be a trader, which means having the mentality of a badass ‘rock star’ who doesn’t accept the status quo of what society has to offer.
3. Escaping the 9-5 ‘slave-grind’
The life that being a full-time trader would allow you to live is simply awesome. Sitting by the beach, relaxing, entering a trade occasionally throughout the month when you see a high-quality price action signal; not too bad.
However, even better than that, is simply not having to ‘report’ to work on time every day. Waking up at 6 in the morning to get ready to drive into a job you loathe is no one’s idea of fun. Being a full-time trader would allow you to escape this form of modern-day slavery. I firmly believe that the way we all go to work for 40 hours a week (or more), hunched over desks in windowless cubicles, is simply a new form of slavery. Trading provides the opportunity to escape this. It’s not easy of course, but at least it gives us a chance at real, true freedom.
The flexibility that you get from being a trader is awesome. You don’t have to worry about ‘missing work’ or ‘calling in sick’ if you want to go visit relatives or go on a holiday. You can make your own schedule, travel where you want and do what you want when you want. For me, simply not having to live by someone else’s ‘rules’ or schedule is one of the best parts about being a trader.
5. Family time
If you have kids, being a trader allows you to spend more time with them and be there more as they grow up. This is especially rewarding when they are little and doing new things every day. Spending 8 or 10 hours at work every day causes you to miss at least half of your kid’s childhood as they grow up. You really can’t put a price on having more time with your family. Being an at-home trader allows you to have this time.
6. You understand the world better
Being a trader helps you understand the differences in the strength of various economies around the world. I always find it amazing how little most people know about exchange rates and the relative strengths of different countries. Being a currency trader, you become focused on the price action of various currency pairs and this helps you understand the world in a more intimate and clearer way than most other people who are not traders. For example, if you want to travel to a different country, you will likely already know the exchange rate difference between that country and your own, whereas most people have no idea.
7. You call your own shots
Being a trader means you call the shots. You make your own decisions both in the market and in life. If you wake up one day and you don’t feel like doing anything, then don’t. You are not obligated to drive to work and hear your boss dictate to you what you need to do. You set the rules.
This type of freedom isn’t for everyone though. Some people simply break down without the rules imposed by jobs and society. If you’re going to be a full-time trader, you have to make your own structure and routine in life. For those who embrace this, it comes with the perk of real freedom. But if you’re not a self-starter and self-motivated, you will struggle with this aspect of trading.
Two of the best things about trading for me are travel and minimalism. I have adopted a minimalist approach to trading and life in general. I love having the choice to live a ‘normal’ / humble life and I enjoy traveling. Trading gives me the freedom to be able to travel when and where I want, and all I need to trade is my laptop or an iPad to manage my positions and study the charts. The minimalist lifestyle and trading approach are synergistic in that having a scaled-back and ‘minimalist’ lifestyle helps you remain clear-headed, calm, and focused as you trade.
8. You can trade until you die – no physical labour
The fact that trading can be done by the young and old alike is another big advantage. If you’re a trader, you don’t really ever have to ‘retire’ if you don’t’ want to. You can trade your whole life because it obviously isn’t physical labor and it can be done from your home. Thus, becoming a skilled trader provides you with the potential to generate the income you’re entire life.
9. Equal playing field for all
It doesn’t take a degree from a fancy university to become a successful trader. It just takes determination, persistence, and most of all, discipline and patience. Trading is truly the most equal of all opportunities out there. Anyone who wants to become a trader can learn from the ground up, no ‘prerequisites’ required. Some of the best traders in the world have no formal college education, so even college dropouts can succeed as traders if they want it bad enough.
Thus, trading offers a real opportunity for anyone in the world who is looking for a different path in life, a path to real freedom from today’s overly-structured societal ‘norms’.
10. Giving back
Becoming a successful trader puts you in a very unique position of being able to help other people. Not only can you help your friends and family financially (which is also really cool), you have the ability to pass on a skill to them. Something that they can then use to build their own true freedom as you did. This not only benefits them but also brings you great internal satisfaction. This is one big reason why I started teaching people how to trade via my price action trading courses and online traders’ community. Life is not fulfilling unless you can help others and make a difference in their lives, and that certainly is my aim through Learn To Trade The Market.
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Vincent Nyagaka is a Professional Trader, Analyst & Author. He has been actively engaged in market analysis for the past 7 years. He has a monthly readership of 100,000+ traders and has taught over 1,000 students since 2014. Vincent is also an experienced instructor and public speaker. Check out Vincent’s Professional Trading Course here.