Improve Your Concentration for Better Trading
Do you have difficulty focusing while you are trading binary options? Maybe not, if you do only short term trades like 60 Second trades; a lot of new traders are attracted to binary options because they do not have to stay in their trades for very long. Impatience is not your friend, though, and you will quickly discover that if you are not testing your trades, you will not do well on any timeframe. And testing takes a great deal of focus, even when you are testing short-term trades. You might balk at the idea of testing hundreds of trades before you even trade live with real money, but it is a fact of life for any successful binary options trader.
If you do test your trades, you probably know how tedious this can get, even if you love trading. Trade after trade all start to blend together and look the same, and you start missing the details. As your mind wanders, you may forget entirely about what you are doing, and a task that should have taken you an hour may end up taking you two or three. There is no denying that this stuff can get very repetitious, and may tax even the best minds. Here are some tips for improving your concentration and approaching binary options with a healthy, focused mind.
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When you sit in place for a long time, what happens? Your circulation may get a bit cramped, and your blood pools in the lower part of your body (the natural result of living in a world with gravity). You need to boost the flow of blood and oxygen to your brain to get things working at their best. Get up and take a short walk and come back, and you may feel more alert. Exercising regularly can also help you to feel more alert generally.
You may think that you will get the most work done if you plow through it all as fast as you can without any breaks, but this typically has the opposite effect. Instead, you end up losing brain power. Your brain needs breaks to keep up maximum efficiency. Every half hour to an hour, take a little break and do something else, if even for five minutes. It does not even necessarily need to be trading-related. You may be surprised at the discoveries you make and the things you will realize when you are not constantly staring at the same screen. Revelations often come while you are doing other things.
Do One Thing at a Time
Do you find yourself trying to do four or five things at once? Maybe you are testing your trades and reading a book about binary options and chatting on a forum and looking for new systems to try. This is not always the most productive use of your time. In the modern workplace, we are often taught by our superiors that multitasking is a critical job skill, but studies have shown it can actually damage concentration and your ability to perform to your best on any one task. Learn how to do one thing at a time.
This is a particularly important skill for binary options trading. A lot of traders are all over the map with what they are doing, and cannot pick a trading method and follow through with it until they are successful. They go hunting for the holy grail instead of focusing on a good method which may not be perfect, but can make them profitable if they just stick with it. This type of wild goose chase can easily go on for years.
Do Five More
A common concentration tactic which works well is called the “five more rule.” Basically, when you feel like quitting, but you know very well you could continue without any adverse results, you simply convince yourself to do five more of whatever it is you are doing. So, let’s say you are backtesting binary options trades. You are feeling bored and losing interest in what you are doing, and you feel like quitting. Just tell yourself, “I can quit after I do five more tests.” And then if you feel that way again five tests later, just tell yourself the same thing, and so on. The reason this usually works is that it allows you to approach your task in small, manageable portions, instead of being daunted by the idea that you need to do three dozen more trades before the day is over.
While the “five more” rule works pretty well, it does not apply if you are coming up against a genuine wall. Learning to recognize when you are really exhausted, as opposed to simply bored or apathetic, is an important skill. Getting past your apathy or boredom is a great thing to learn how to do, but it will not help you if you try to barrel through real exhaustion. When you really hit a point of “I can do no more today,” it is unwise to continue. You may find that if you do, that wall will continue for days or longer.
Maintain a Healthy Sleep Schedule
Do you actually get eight hours of sleep each night? Or do you sometimes get six, other nights get nine, and others get just four or five? Do you regularly deprive yourself of sleep because you are too busy? If so, you are actually probably taking longer to complete your tasks than you need to, and likely making them much harder too. You would probably get far more done if you got roughly eight hours of quality sleep each night. Research has demonstrated the clear benefits of sleep for a healthy body and mind. Fatigue does nothing to help you to focus. Trying to trade while sleep deprived is pretty much the same thing as trying to trade while inebriated. Your judgment and reflexes are impaired, and odds are you feel pretty bad physically too, which adds a distraction.
Plan Your Time
Do you have a schedule for studying binary options? While you cannot entirely constrain yourself to a schedule (“I’m going to become an expert on price action trading in exactly four weeks and go live in three months” typically will not translate into action well), you should still have some kind of a plan when you sit down to study or trade. As an example: “Today, I am going to read up on MACD, and then I am going to practice. I will give myself two hours for binary options related tasks today. If I do not understand my reading, I will read until I understand. If I get through that, I will practice until my time is up. If I still need more practice, I will make that priority one tomorrow.”
This prevents you from sitting down and wasting time because you cannot figure out what to focus on. Notice that you also give yourself adequate time to really absorb the material, and that you will not press on at the end of the period simply because it is time to do so, even if you are armed with imperfect knowledge. You are giving yourself time to really make progress.
Maintain a Positive Environment
It is no good trying to trade when you are in an environment that is full of distractions or negativity. I have written up an entire article on this topic, which you may read here. Your workplace can make a huge difference in your attitude and your ability to focus.
For the majority of people, small, light meals throughout the day at regular intervals are ideal for metabolism. Large meals once or twice a day can really take a toll on digestion and metabolism, and they can make you feel lethargic and unfocused. Eat a healthy diet packed with nutrition. Vitamin B-12, vitamin D, and vitamin C can all help improve concentration. You might also try a supplement with gingko biloba, ginseng, and omega-3 fatty acids. These are all great for boosting your brainpower.
Trading binary options successfully is hard work, even though the basic concept of binary options is easy to master. If you are going to be one of the few who excel and maybe even have a shot at trading for a living, you will do what you can to improve your personal performance. Making healthy lifestyle choices and learning some simple concentration tricks can speed up the path to success and help you to win more trades.