05 September 2020

Fear Of The Unknown

How to think about your trading fear.
"If you're scared, say you're scared."

“C just vomited,”  my wife said as she picked up her laptop and headed upstairs to the main floor of our house.

That’s how [and why] the Saturday morning of this Labor Day [US] long weekend started… on Wednesday evening

“Crap… didn’t he have a headache and a sore throat on the way home from practice as well,” I ask even though I pretty much already know the answer.

“Yes.  He’s getting tested Saturday morning at 9:50.  You’re taking him.”

“Wait… what?  How did we go from he’s showing some symptoms to I’m taking him to get tested on Saturday morning… with no discussion?”

“Because we have to social distance again… in the house...which you know the boys hate.  So, we need an answer to whether he has Covid sooner rather than later.  And he’s going to be nervous/scared and you’re better at soothing him… in advance of something that makes him nervous.  I’m better on the back end.  Thus, you’re taking him.”

I paused for a moment to reflect on her conclusion… Then, “He’s not scared… it’s just an unknown to him.  And by the way… too much words.”

“Maybe… but you’re still taking him.”

“Ok Last Word Lucy.”

My wife was right though… My son was very nervous about the test.  

But I was also right… his apprehension was about not knowing what the experience would be… 

  • Would there be a lot of people around?

  • Would it be with a bunch of doctors [not his favorite… with apologies to my friends in the medical field]?

  • Would it take a long time?

  • Most important… would it hurt?

My son’s misgivings about having a Covid 19 test map pretty well to most people’s apprehension about even investigating short-term trading as a possible side hustle...

  • Isn’t it complicated and hard to learn?  Nope… the mechanics of trading are exceedingly simple and easy to learn… It amounts to a series of “if this, then do that” patterns.  What IS difficult is developing and executing the right mental and emotional approach.  In my trading community, we call that Emotional Capital.

  • Isn’t there a lot of math involved?  I suppose… but it’s simple math at best.

  • Do I have to sit in front of a computer all day?  Not unless you have a 9-5 that requires you do that… Trading [even intraday] has no such requirement.

  • Isn’t it boring?  Yes… and repetitive if you’re doing it correctly.

  • Isn’t it just gambling?  I suppose… but so too is purchasing a component of the so-called American Dream with a 15 or 30 year loan obligation assuming you’ll be able to remain gainfully employed… at higher and higher levels of compensation over the entire period.

  • Won’t I just lose all my money?  Only if you’re stuck on stupid… and stubborn to boot.

There’s a much longer list of fears and sub fears that I won’t bore you with by raising and answering here.  Just know that many of your fears about “getting into trading” are unwarranted… if not wholly unjustified.  Don’t let paper tigers keep you from investigating a thing that could literally change your life.

And, by the way… my son’s test took all of 15 seconds.  After it was done he said,  “That wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be.”

I’m guessing that you’ll have a similar response after you look into trading.

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