No matter who you are, there are times when you just aren't functioning at the top of your game. You try and put on a trade, but your heart just isn't in it. What do you do? Do you continue on and hope for the best or stand aside and wait before tackling the markets again? As a general rule it's usually a good idea to stand aside.
At first glance, this advice may seem counterintuitive. Throughout our lives, we've been told over and over, "At first if you don't succeed, try again." It may be necessary to try again, but it may not be a good idea to try again when you aren't ready. Give yourself a break. Your body and mind have limits. When you are feeling low, a lot of your mental energy is spent so that no one will suspect you're in a slump. If you broke your leg, you wouldn't try to jog two miles a day. You would stay off your feet until you recovered. If you had a high fever, you wouldn't jump in a cold pool and swim a few laps. When physically ill, your body can't take it. You would end up feeling worse when it was all over. It is vital that you rest and recover Similarly, when you're not feeling up to par, and have wavering confidence, it's wise to say out of the markets until you are feeling better.
Articles will resume after Labor Day!
Reprint from PrudentTrader Archives 2006