A Day in the Life of a Trader
Have you ever wondered what successful traders do in order to stay at the top of their game each and every day throughout the year?
The truth is that they never deviate from their routine. Their trading routine, and time, is holy and is not to be changed around by anyone or anything. In fact, this is one of the main things that separate professionals from the amateurs in the forex market.
It may sound a bit cynical, but keep in mind that in order to succeed with trading, you need to treat it as a business. After all, nobody would ask you to go shopping for dresses or handbags during your work hours. So if you for example have Sunday evenings dedicated to your weekly forex market analysis, don’t let anyone interfere with that!
In this article, however, we will take a look at what a day in the life of a professional independent forex trader can be like. This is something we know that many people have questions about, and the reason is probably because they are not used to the idea of being able to work from wherever they want, with no boss to tell them what to do and when to do it.
If this sounds familiar, this article is for you! So let’s dive right in to it and take a look at what a day in the life of a pro trader could look like…
Rule number 1: Get up early!
One of the easiest things to do once you have regained freedom over your life is to fall victim to one of our most basic instincts: laziness. It’s completely natural, and that’s why we need to fight it every day.
Make sure to keep yourself on track so this doesn’t happen to you. Create a daily routine and a schedule with tasks to complete each day. Both research and practical experience shows that writing down all your daily tasks on paper really helps to keep yourself accountable.
Also make sure you get up from bed at a reasonable time each day to get your day started. Whether this is at 6 am or 9 am is not important, but it is a good idea to set your alarm at the same time every day in order to keep some regularity in your new life.
Don’t forget to exercise!
It’s no secret that this step is often neglected. We have all kinds of excuses not to work out, with lack of time being the favourite among them. Especially when you are getting started with trading, there’s a constant feeling of being behind with your learning, and work-out often gets a lower priority.
Make sure this doesn’t happen to you! Even if you don’t want to commit time to go to the gym, 20 minutes of push-ups and sit-ups at home before breakfast really makes a big difference and you will feel energised throughout the day. Seriously, just try it and you will see what I mean. People have had incredible results with just this simple change in their daily routine.
Daily market scan
Once you’re done with your daily exercise and had a good breakfast, it’s time to head to the office. And while we are talking about offices, it’s true that some independent traders enjoy the freedom of working from home. Others, however, like the more structured environment that an office provides and choose work in places like shared co-working spaces. Everyone is different, and you need to find out what works for you.
Most professional traders will take a look at the general situation in the market before they do anything else work-related. Here’s a step-by-step guide for you on how to start your trading day:
- Scan the financial news headlines in the leading outlets such as:
- Reuters Markets
- Check an economic calendar for relevant news that are expected to be released – Forex Factory’s forex calendar is a good choice.
- Once you’ve gone through the news, it’s time to take a look at the markets. Even though we are forex traders, stock indices can be useful to take a look at. Take a look at how the S&P 500 performed overnight and, depending on your time zone, how the Asian markets have opened.
Certain commodities, like gold, can also provide some good insight into what can be expected from any US dollar-related currency pair. If gold is up, chances are the US dollar will be down against most other currencies.
- Check your open trades from the day before. Did you get stopped out of any of your trades overnight? Did any of your profit targets get hit? Update your trading plans and journal as required.
- Look for new opportunities that are materializing in the market. Are any of the forex pairs on your watch list forming set-ups you like to trade? Check important technical levels in the market, and enter into new trades according to your trading plan.
- Do other things! One of the main mistakes many new traders make is that think they need to spend their entire day in front of the screens. The truth is that this is very counterproductive, and it increases the chances of you making bad trading decisions simply because you get bored or because wild market movements affect you emotionally.
Instead, set price alerts that will notify you when the price reaches levels that are important to you. Then, go out and do something else. Or spend time educating yourself on the markets. Just don’t sit in front of the charts!
And that’s it – a complete guide to what a day in the life of an independent forex trader could be like! If this sounds interesting, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to learn more about what forex trading has to offer. We regularly host completely free forex trading workshops for anyone who is interested. Seats fill up fast, so make sure to book yours today!