Here’s a little bit about me.
I’m a small-town girl at heart, having grown up in a town remotely located in the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains, near Yosemite. I traveled around a bit and lived in several different cities, but my heart belongs to these mountains. I raised my children in the same small mountain town until they were middle school age, then we moved to the beach cities of Southern California where we enjoyed a bigger experience. Those were busy years. Having 3 daughters in high school at the same time and, working to support us all, was just the right setting for learning to work efficiently. Being able to get a lot done in a day isn’t about being a high powered mutli-tasker. It’s about staying focused on what matters most in every given moment. This is how I trade. I focus on what matters, and I remove everything else.
I started out with a blog about trading nine years ago. That was the beginning of my life online. Today I lead a live trading room, send out trade alerts, teach classes on trading, and build indicators and trading software. This is how it happened.
I took my first trading class in 2001. I traveled around the country, learned techniques and trading systems from lots of different people and, like you, I read a lot of books on currency trading. I spent six years before making the transition from student to trader.
I enjoy trading, but I really enjoyed learning trading systems. For me, being a Forex student was fun, and being a Forex trader is work! I’ve mixed and matched tools and indicators, learned systems, done it right, done it wrong, and I lived the trader’s “been there, done that” cliché. I made tons of money, I lost tons of money, I spent tons of money to learn more! I committed years of my time to staring at price action dancing across charts on my computer screen. I even tried to quit a few times; deleted all my charts, vowed I’d never waste another hour or another dollar trying to figure it out. That didn’t last long, before I was back at my computer, re-creating charts, and luring myself in with yet another book or trading system.
I know mine is a common story. After hours of practice, study and implementation, I made a few discoveries. Some trading strategies are fun even though they aren’t reliable. Some were time consuming and the results were consistent, but my schedule was not. I traded strategies that were impressive, turning hundreds of pips at a time, but the draw-down was fatiguing, stressful, and literally damaging to my health.
The interesting part of my story is that there was one strategy that I developed somewhere along the way that I would refer to whenever I felt like I was losing my way with a trade. I called it my “Combo” chart, because it was a simple combination of indicators that produced reliable information about market direction, momentum and timing. Before I consciously realized I was doing it, I depended on this chart as a tool to help confirm other trading strategies I was trading at the time.
I went through multiple trading systems and techniques during a period of trial and error in my trading career. While that was useful to me, what it really did was solidify my need for the Combo Trading strategy which I kept on a chart in the corner of my computer at all times. That was what I would refer to whenever I was stuck. The one tried and true, the one simple and unsophisticated, is the one I used when I really wanted to know what was going on, or when I needed help getting out of a trading problem. I finally grew up enough to realize… That’s the One!
Now, I build all my trading plans and automated systems around a simple technique for tracking the repeatable patterns of trends and ranges which I call Simply Combo.
When I started that blog almost a decade ago, two things happened that surprised me. I got better, and so did my readers. I understood accountability when I started publicly announcing my trades. I completely ceased all “non-essential” trading, and only took trades which I had carefully planned out with an expectation about what the repeatable pattern would produce. I was, (and still am), diligent to keep notes about every trade I took, reviewing my notes regularly for the purpose of learning and remembering what works best. When I invited the whole world to have a look at what I was stating in my private trade-journal, I became the best version of myself.
Trading really isn’t difficult. You can buy, sell, or close. It’s child’s play! What makes it difficult is probably something you can read about in Psychology Today, because it has to do with our nature, our lack of focus, our inability to trust ourselves, our need for excitement, or 200 other things. But, it isn’t because trading strategies are difficult to learn.
What one person finds as the path to his or her success, another person found too boring, too simple or too unsophisticated. I found my path to something repeatable so I can make a profit, and I know you will too.
My three little girls are all grown and graduated from college, now pursuing their own path to success. It’s my hope that they will stay focused on what matters most in every given moment. When I was writing this, I text-messaged the 3 of them and asked if they could remember something that I said all the time when they were growing up. I was hoping for some profound morsel of wisdom that would summarize my leadership, my wit, or my commitment to excellence in trading. All I got back was, “I’d rather be eaten alive by sharks than be tickled to death.” Well, so much for profundity!