How Long Does It Take To Trade Stocks For a Living?

by Anne-Marie Baiynd, TheTradingBook.com
Professional trader, trading coach, and author.

marketheist-wish-you-were-better-jim-rohn

How long does it take before I can make a stable income day trading and swing trading stocks?

I get asked this question quite a bit, and the answers are most varied. Someone like Charles Kirk might become successful and self sufficient right away, and others without a solid foundation from which to rise up, the time can be much longer.

Trading requires a unique set of skills to come together. The new trader must be willing to study and should possess analytical skills in conjunction with an open mind, apart from rules and preconceived notions…..well, these are my skills that have allowed me the success I have today.

I did not have a background in finance, nor did I work anywhere that would have given me this level of knowledge afforded by those trading for themselves with a background in finance. It took me the better part of three years to get on my feet properly. In speaking with some folks from proprietary firms and such, it seems that the average success path takes around three years.

Common Mistakes That Make Stock Trading Harder & Take Longer To Succeed.

The absence of proper risk controls is the primary reason most traders fail.

Here’s the rule of thumb: Make every trade like it’s the only trade you’ve got.

If you are wise, that means that you attempt to make sure all the signs are in your favor.  Many folks take trades without an edge, and if you don’t have an edge – it is nothing more than rolling dice.  The absence of a reliable trading system opens the door for failure – find one and use it as it is meant to be used.

Put yourself in a box with a proven system – staying inside the lines will keep you out of trouble and minimize your risk exposure.  Jumping from one system to the next is a killer – there is no Holy Grail of systems, and there is no GREATEST teacher.  But there are some very good ones out there.

Manage your impulses and emotions – DO NOT BUY FIRST AND ASK QUESTIONS LATER – leave that type of activity to professionals that really have a handle on what’s going on.  Most of us do not study enough – we end up doing our practice work in the middle of the real game.

What Can I Do To Become a Profitable Trader Faster?

  • Learn to manage risk exposure.

  • Focus on finding the best entries and by default, you will have less trouble with your exits.

  • Find a good trading system and REALLY learn it.

  • Find a trading coach that you can learn from.  Every peak performance athlete has a coach – someone that can understand them and help them through the difficult spots as skill levels grow.

  • Pay attention to yourself and your emotions.  Learning to manage and squash fear and anxiety all day is critical.  Decision making skills are integral to your success.

  • Use playback options on your trading platform so that you can trade in dynamic charts – instead of the static ones that we study. Dynamic chart allows us to practice in a ‘real time’ environment, and practice, practice, practice.

Know What You’re Getting Into. What Stock Trading Is & Isn’t.

Trading is exciting and fulfilling work; making gains each day is like slaying giants. It fills you with a sense of triumph and power. Trading is liberating work; the accomplished traders chooses his hours, vacations where ever he desires, buys anything he wants, and is free of general work shackles.

However, to play well – we must pay. Trading is painstaking work; it is filled with endless hours of preparation and study, particularly in our early years. Trading is not a get rich quick occupation.

Trading requires an unyielding dedication to understanding an environment that constantly is shifting below our feet and around us. The greatest money managers in the world have 50% returns in their best years, but many of us believe we can do much better than them. It takes an extraordinary amount of discipline to remain consistently profitable in the markets.

 

Beginner 0 Users Collected

Post Topics

Post Details

Market Merchandise: Currency (Forex), Futures, Options, Stock,
Players: Trader,
Styles: Trading, Position Trading, Swing Trading, Day Trading,

Download Our Free eBook

25 Stock Market Indicators To Know

And subscribe to our MarketHeist Guides newsletter!

Free Brokers, Software, & Tools to Start.

Start with Brokers that have free accounts and professional grade software. Software that's the same whether you're practicing with fake money or trading real money.

Submit a Service

Avatar Image

TD Ameritrade Online Broker

With free thinkorswim, Trade Architect, & mobile software. Practice with virtual money. Invest and trade in stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, bonds, options, futures, and forex. No minimum and no maintenance fees. $0 to start.

☆ Collect Launch

Avatar Image

tradeMONSTER Online Broker

Free browser & mobile software. Easy to use technology including strategySeek and paperTRADE. Invest and trade in stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, bonds, and options. No minimum and no maintenance fees. $0 to start.

☆ Collect Launch

Avatar Image

optionsXpress Online Broker

optionsXpress offers an innovative suite of online brokerage services for investor education, strategy evaluation and trade execution. No minimum requirements.

☆ Collect Launch

Learn The Business. Take A Course.

What is the market and how it works
Finding Opportunities (with Technical Analysis & Fundamental Analysis)
Planning & Safety (with strategies to make smart decisions.)
Plan Execution: Buying & Selling

Submit a Service

Learn Stocks

Avatar Image

Investools Investing Foundations Program

Get trained in the foundations of the stock market and stock trading with two courses, a wealth of easy-to-use tools, and top-tier coaching support, in the program that helps you start managing your own portfolio. In the Investing Foundation Program, you’ll enjoy live and online workshops that can help you quickly overcome fears and learn [...]

☆ Collect Launch

Learn Options

Avatar Image

OptionsAnimal Apprentice Options Education Program

Description Build your knowledge from the ground up. Understand key concepts and learn the basic spread trades that will give you a foundation to trade successfully. Learn how to properly structure a trade using the Protective Put, Covered Call, Collar Trade as well as applying the Straddle/Strangle. Trade Adjustment Spread Trades OptionsAnimal Trader Professional Program [...]

☆ Collect Launch

Learn Futures

Avatar Image

OpenTrader Professional Training Program

The industry’s only training program built by professional full-time traders. You used to have to get hired by a professional trading firm to get world-class training. Not anymore. If you’ve been a losing trader, getting beaten down by the market again and again, low on confidence and full of doubt, things are about to change [...]

☆ Collect Launch

On-The-Job Training. Earn While Learning.

Follow Live Trades, Step By Step
Detailed Trade and Market Analysis
Explanations of Strategies and Tactics
Questions Answered in Webcasts & Chatrooms
Learn by Copying The Pros At Every Step

Submit a Service

Learn Stocks

Avatar Image

Mish’s Market Minute Premium Stock Picks Video Subscription

Live-in-the-market instruction showing you how to trade in the afternoon the choice stock and ETF picks vetted by MarketGauge’s tools earlier in the day. Video up to 15 minutes: 4 times a week (M/T/W/Th) by 1:30PM ET $124.97/month Includes ETF Monitor & Nuggets List Private real-time Twitter Alerts 2 week FREE trial Learn as Mish: [...]

☆ Collect Launch

Learn Options

Avatar Image

stockguy22 Live Trading & Education for Part Time Traders

What You’ll Get Learn stocks and options trading at your own pace from a group of full time traders dedicated to teaching through live trading, education, and mentoring.  See how trading is done methodologically as an occupation on a daily basis, from beginning to end.  Start with the daily in-depth analysis of stocks, the overall [...]

☆ Collect Launch

Learn Futures

Avatar Image

Emini Wizard Trading System & Live Trading Chat Room

Thanks for considering The Emini Wizard System: This system is available for purchase for people who want to make a one time investment for the entire program. You get: Access to the Member’s website Spreadsheets Common plays Special plays Trade logic explained Chart patterns Chart settings we prefer Separate active chat area (30 days free [...]

☆ Collect Launch

Some Partners We've Worked With

  • Download Our Free eBook

    25 Stock Market Indicators To Know

    And subscribe to our MarketHeist Guides newsletter!