Podcast – Episode 028 – Working on Your Trading Business

Podcast Transcript

Hey genius nation, this is Allen, coming to you from the sunny sandy beach of Galveston, Texas. Galveston is a beach town about an hour and 15 minutes from home for me. And so, I come here once in a while to just relax. And today I’m here, no wife, no kids. I’m actually gonna be doing something, working on the business as I say. That’s the topic of this podcast.

The cool thing about the beaches in Texas are that you can actually drive on the beach. Not every beach allows it but this one does. Most of Galveston you can drive on the beach. And so right now I am parked on the beach, sitting in my car about 15 feet away from the waves, from the water.

And so if you can hear the waves, if you can hear the seagulls, that’s me sitting on the beach. And I actually expected a lot fewer people here today. It is a weekday and school has started but there are still a bunch of people here, so I guess nobody told these tourists to go home yet. But glad they’re having fun.

And I’m here to actually do some work. I’m away from the office. But I took a day off today, drove down here, made a day of it. And what I’m gonna be doing is called working on the business, instead of in the business.

That is a subject that I first heard about in the book called, The E-myth by Michael Gerber. And of course you know, it’s about the e-myth, it’s the entrepreneurial myth. That’s what he’s talking about.

And it’s a book about how to improve your business. And of course trading should be treated as a business. So trading is my business, one of them, options and this is another one. I’m gonna be working on both of those. But the idea between working on your business versus in your business is, you know there’s two types right?

Like I said, in the business is what you do on a day to day basis to keep your business running. On the business is what you do to actually improve it and actually grow the business. So, if you take an example of an accountant, if you’re an accountant, working in the business would be meeting with clients, fielding out paperwork, doing peoples taxes, managing your employees if you have any. Anything that you do on a day to day basis.

You know, paying the bills, paying the rent, all that kind of stuff. That’s working in your business. You have to do it to maintain the business to keep the doors open. But that’s not gonna help you grow. So working on your business for an accountant would be something like figuring out a way to get new customers.

Or looking at maybe purchasing some new software, looking at some new software that might make things easier and smoother. Or going to a continuing education type event where you’re learning about new techniques or new loopholes in tax law, or whatever you guys do.

In the E-myth book, Gerber actually talks about and gives an example of a baker. So this lady she’s making pies. But she’s not getting ahead. Every day she makes the pies, she loves making the pies, and every day she’s exhausted at the end of the day because she bakes the pies, and she sells the pies, and she cleans the store, and at the end of the day, she’s just really tired and frustrated, and she can’t get ahead.

He explains to her that, all that stuff, you’re working in the business. Making the pies, cutting the apples, baking the pies. I think we got an ice cream truck coming. All of that stuff is working and taking care of customers, cleaning the store, that’s all working in your business. It’s not gonna make your business grow.

In order to make your business grow, what you need to do is create systems for everything that you do you in your business. And then once you have systems then you can actually, hopefully give it to somebody else, or streamline it.

And then you take time away from the business to actually work on it. You know, how do you get more customers? How do you work on making your systems? How do you improve your recipes and all that kind of stuff?

So in trading, if trading is our business, then for us, the day to day stuff is the actual trading. You know we think, oh yeah that’s gonna improve my business. But no, that’s the day to day stuff. That’s working in your business. You’re not actually gonna improve your trading that much by just doing trades. That’s not how it really works.

We think, I need more experience, I need more experience. Putting on trades for the sake of putting on trades is great, but it’s not gonna get you to improve unless you actually work on your business and go back and review those trades.

Listening to the news, that’s again, reading the newspapers, or reading CNBC websites, or all that kind of stuff, listening to conference calls, working on your taxes, working on your profit and loss statement, all that kind of stuff, that’s all working in the business. It has to be done. We have to do it. It’s annoying sometimes, it’s frustrating.

And eventually hopefully you can get to the point where you can hire somebody else to do a lot of that stuff for you. You know, your taxes and what not. You can pay for more expensive subscription services that will listen to conference calls for you. And then just give you like the cliffs notes of it or something. I don’t know.

But what I want to focus on is working in the business because we’re already working in the business. You already know how to do that. Working on the business is what I want to focus on. And that’s what you do to become a better trader.

And one of the things that I’m here to do, and what I urge you all to do is, take some time every few months to sit down with all of your trades and actually review them. Look at the ones that worked. Look at the ones that did well. Look at the ones that did not do well.

Just go over everything and try to find patterns. Try to find why did I mess up on this trade. You know, I’ve been trading this one stock every month for the last two years, but I had these bad months and these three trades. Didn’t work out. Why? What was the reason? So try to figure that out.

Back testing would also be something where you’re working on your business. Back testing all the trades that you did not do well on. Or back testing new strategies if you’ve come up with something. Or a tweak to a strategy that you already have, a trading plan that you already have. That would be working on your business.

Improving your mindset is another thing that you could be doing you know? Working on yourself. Your mindset as in, what are my goals? Can I accomplish more with what I’m doing? Or why do I feel certain ways?

You know, meditation is something that I’ve been looking into as a way to calm my mind and increase my results. A lot of traders that you read about, the more successful ones, they admit it. They say that they do trading.

One of the books that just came out recently is called, oh man I forgot the name of it. Principles is the name of it by Ray Dalio who runs one of the biggest hedge funds in the world.

And so he talks about how he meditates on a regular basis. And whenever he gets scared or whenever his mind is out of whack, he’ll just take time out and just go and meditate for five minutes, and it calms him. So that is something. Learning how to do that would definitely help you in your trading. That is something that I would classify as working on your business.

Working on controlling your emotions is another one you know? So worry, fear, anger, all of these things that we feel on a regular basis when we’re putting our money at risk, all this stuff is something that you don’t want to have impact your trading. And so when you’re working on that stuff, that’s working on your business. Getting yourself to do better.

Education would be another one you know? Taking a class, taking a course, anything like that would be working on your business. Where you’re actually trying to improve. Things like listening to this podcast. That’s what you’re exactly doing. You might be doing it in a car, but it counts you know? You’re improving your thinking. You’re learning new stuff. And that’s also working on your business.

I mean, in trading it doesn’t take too long to work on your business you know? You don’t have to spend an hour on it every day. But every few months is when I take some time out and I look at it. Especially once you have your systems in place. You know, when you have your trading plans in place. If you have all that stuff down, then it’s not hard.

You just follow your trading plans on a day to day basis and then once in a while you sit back and say, all right, how can I make things better? How can I improve it? If you don’t have your trading plans in place already then that’s the first step. You have to know exactly what your trades are. How you’re gonna plan them out. How you’re gonna do them.

And then you review if you follow the trading plan. If you’re not following it then you need to work on that obviously. But that’s the first step. And then at least a couple times a year, you should spend a day from wherever you trade, wherever you normally trade get away from that environment.

Go out to nature maybe if that’s your thing. Go to the beach, go to the forest, go by the river. Go to the mall if that helps you. Go to the coffee shop, whatever. Somewhere you’re not distracted by the trading. You know, you don’t have your laptop with you or it’s not open to your trading account. And we’re just sit to thing. Sit back, review and think right?

And you want to do this alone as well. Don’t take your spouse with you. This needs to be done alone. Go over how things are going you know? How have you been doing the last few months? What your emotions have been like.

How have you been feeling physically as well, your health? You know, because that also has an impact on your trades as well. If you’re not feeling well, maybe you don’t trade as well. So you need to check that as well.

And then plan for the next few months. If you’re happy with your latest results, if you’re happy with what you’ve been doing from the last time you reviewed, that’s great. Keep doing it you know? And you should go out and celebrate and say, hey I’m doing great. This is wonderful. I’m gonna have some fun. I’m gonna enjoy myself.

If not, if you’re not doing that well, if you think you can do better then work on improvements. That’s the game right? We learn something. We create a plan for it. We create a system, a trading plan, and then we try it out. And if it works great. If it doesn’t work we correct. And that’s the only way to get better you know?

Try, fail, change, correct, and then try again. And then you follow the patter until eventually you get to a place where you are very happy with your results. And it’s definitely doable. It’s definitely possible. If people have done it before you, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to do it as well you know?

Ray Dalio is a guy who starts off with like almost nothing, and builds up a multi billion dollar hedge fund. If you want, go read his book. He’ll show you the way he thinks. He explains stuff, how he did it.

He’s done a lot of podcast interviews lately since the book came out trying to promote the book. So listen to those and you’ll see how he thinks. And then you can try to incorporate that when you review your own stuff okay? And then just be looking to get better. Just looking to get better. That’s all we’re doing. Just doing it one day at a time. One trade at a time. Just looking to get better.

So make sure you’re working on your business. It doesn’t have to be all the time. But in the beginning I would say maybe every couple months just step back and say, all right, how can I make things better you know?

And then when you are more established, I like to do it at least every six months, four months kind of if I can, if I can afford it, to get out and do it. I would like to do that. But at least once a year, I do, do it.

Normally I wouldn’t be out here on such a sunny day. I forgot that it’s gonna be so hot today. I thought it was gonna be a little bit more cloudy. This might be an abbreviated version for me because it’s baking out here today.

But anyway, that’s it for today. Work on your business, and in the next episode what I’m gonna be doing is actually going through a little bit of how or what I’m gonna be looking at when I’m reviewing my own trades all right?

Talk to you soon. Bye.



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