We’ve all known traders who lack self-control. They react rather than act, making decisions impulsively, oft based on those twin fears of missing out together with losing money. It’s no surprise when such traders pull down. In a real existent sense, they merchandise their hopes together with fears, non the markets inwards forepart of them.
But how virtually traders amongst fantabulous self-control? I know many: experienced coin managers amongst long histories of success. Once inwards a piece they brand mistakes that they pull every bit rookie errors. They don’t appear fearful or reactive, even then they volition chase bad prices or stick amongst losing trades every bit good long. What’s going on inwards such cases? Aren’t dependent area together with self-control supposed to create skillful trading outcomes?
An interesting window of insight into the bad decisions of skillful traders comes from research conducted yesteryear Maria Konnikova that identifies the limits of self-control. Konnikova finds that people high inwards self-control tend to travel to a greater extent than overconfident than others inwards situations where command over outcomes is limited, but perceived command is high. In other words, those amongst high self-control tin post away also autumn victim to an illusory sense of control. That leads to pitiful decisions.
What is peculiarly fascinating inwards Konnikova’s travel is that people amongst high self-control are most probable to overestimate their actual command inwards situations when they are experiencing positive emotions. Konnikova notes, “…the positive touching on that usually accompanies both the illusion of command together with high self-control tin post away travel an Achilles heel of high self-control inwards for certain environments amongst express actual control, creating a feeling of overconfidence that translates into suboptimal determination making.” It’s when traders are winning together with feeling skillful that their confidence is most probable to morph into overconfidence. That leads them to overestimate their command over marketplace outcomes together with brand decisions based upon illusory–not actual–control.
What is the solution to this dilemma? Konnikova explains that the self-awareness of those high inwards self-control tin post away assistance them recognize that positive emotions are a threat to their control, thence cooling them downward when their confidence is running hot. This fits real good amongst observations I induce got made inwards the course of teaching of working amongst traders: oft the worst decisions are made when the trader has only made money, non when he or she has drawn down. We don’t usually intend of positive emotion every bit a involve a opportunity factor, but inwards fact whatever experience that takes our attending from markets together with leads us to focus on outcomes rather than procedure is probable to interfere amongst performance.
We commonly listen that traders should accept the most involve a opportunity when they induce got the highest conviction inwards their ideas. That tin post away travel every bit long every bit conviction doesn’t come upward at the expense of self-awareness.
Further Reading: The Lack of Profits From Market Prophets