Skillsfirst Level 5 Diploma in Financial Trading (RQF) - Module 4 - Technical Analysis
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Performance cues are techniques to improve human performance; they should be viewed as positive aspects in helping us achieve our goals. They work much like imagery or visualisations, except performance cues focus on self-talk statements made to yourself to help accomplish goals.

According to numerous psychological studies, children on average are told “No” or what they can’t do more than 148,000 times before they reach the age of 18. With these kinds of findings, it’s perhaps not surprising that most of our self-talk, the internal dialogue that we constantly have going on in our minds, is negative.

Once again, the key to changing this is through awareness. Make a habit to regularly close your eyes and simply listen to what you’re saying to yourself constantly. What you’ll discover is that the vast majority of your self-talk is simply the same words and phrases being repeated over and over again, such as:

  • I’ll never make it.
  • I’m no good at this.
  • I’m a failure, and I always will be.

However, by identifying these key negative phrases, we can then use short statements and positive affirmations to negate these bad habits and replace them with self-talk which contributes towards your success instead of undermining it.

These statements could be:

  • I’m learning to become a better trader every day.
  • I know I will do whatever it takes to become a highly successful trader.
  • I will do well today by sticking to my trading plan.

The secret to using positive statements and affirmations is to design them in such a way that they elicit a positive emotional response or feeling. This can be done by using the first-person instead of the third-, using highly descriptive and evocative language, and even by verbally saying your statements to yourself with conviction and confidence.

How it works:

One single experience creates a neural pathway that your brain will follow given the same circumstances. When learning a new skill those pathways are slowly being created until the skill is perfected.

A common example in trading would be that you decide to take a trade, only for it to fail. The trades you declined turn out to be good winners. So why did this happen? More than likely it was your interpretation of the situation rather than the reality. To avoid this occurring again, you should take what you have learned and develop criteria and rules for your future trading approach.

For example, if the potential trade meets A, B, and C of your criteria, you will take the trade. Follow this pattern for at least 10 trades before you determine whether it is a winning system. Consistency will gain you the rewards.

The ability to take charge is a quality that comes with experience, and often is one of the most challenging aspects to master. Listen to the way you talk yourself into and out of trades. By doing this you can eventually learn to diffuse negative disempowering talk and instead use empowering talk.

“Okay, this looks good, A is in place, B is also in place, it also looks as if C is in place, now what? Should I take the trade?”

A professional trader would have already placed the trade; a novice is still deciding what to do.

There is a very good reason for the common saying “The best trades are the hardest trades to make”

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