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Where can I find a mentor?

Wondering about coaching, mentoring, and the value of traders being able to come together and talk.

I came across this post on one of the trading forums I frequent and thought it would be well worth sharing here because I talks about something I would like to address.

Hello all,

I’ve been training myself for the past few months on forex and stock trading, so far so good (especially for self taught). I’m well on my way and able to see the bigger picture, but my fine tuning needs some work. I’m beginning to get frustrated and down at this point as I have really high hopes for this (not unrealistic, just high) and am hoping to make a career out of trading.

I do not personally know anybody else who trades and therefore am on my own. The part about trading that I appreciate the most is that we work for ourselves and that our own hard work determines our success. Having said that, about 4-5 months ago, I was part of a mass “down sizing” where I worked. I’ve always wanted to work for myself and saw this lay off as a sign. I quickly took action, having spent countless number of hours daily training myself, staying up all night at times if I had to, stopped going out just to give myself more time learning. I know I’m close to getting my system down, but something is still a little off and my entries/exits arent quite right yet.

As I’m doing this alone, I cannot always see my own errors, only a 2nd pair of eyes can point out what I’m doing wrong.

I am in the Dallas / Fort Worth area and very optimistically searching for a mentor or anybody that can give me guidance. If you are willing to help, or know anybody who would, please PM me, I am available anytime of the day, night, weekends, ANYTIME, this is priority #1 in my life.

I thank you for having taken the time to read my post and thank you for any help you may be able to offer.

Happy trading to all!

Obviously, this poster is very eager to learn and develop as a trader. The fact that he’s looking to identify where he’s having problems is a very good sign. Finding a mentor for 1-on-1 work as an individual traders can be very hard, however, as I’ve written on this blog and in magazine and book articles previously.

But here’s a question.

How valuable, given your own situation, would you find a sort of group coaching session?

I’m thinking in terms of something like a weekly meeting of traders – either in person, via phone, or online – where a group could get together to talk about their trading, share their ups and downs, get help improving their performance, and maybe even collaborate on strategy. Do you think that sort of social/educational interaction would have a big impact on your trading experience?

Leave a comment below and let me know what you think – and where you’re currently at with your trading.

7 replies on “Where can I find a mentor?”

It entirely depends upon the success of the mentor. As the saying goes, never follow someone who is not where you want to be. I would need to see the “resume” of the mentor and find out if he really knows how to trade, or is actually in the 95%.

Mike, I completely agree. There are plenty of people who’ll take your money and lecture at the aspiring trader on how to buy support and short resistance but not mentor “in the heat of the moment” because the only thing they do consistently is loose money. Seeing a p/l resume before obtaining a mentor is like a bank getting a credit check before they give a home loan — it needs to happen.

Elliot Trexler
T3 Capital

Elliot, I agree completely. I notice you work at a trading firm, do you provide a p/l resume? If so I’d be interested in seeing it.

This brings up a very important point: Does the best trader make the best teacher? We have many examples in the sports world where the best coaches were never star performers.

It would be fantastic to find an excellent (i.e., very profitable) trader who was also an outstanding mentor.

When it comes to short-term trading, it’s not always possible for the trader to explain – in enough detail for the student to understand how to reach similar conclusions and make the good trade decisions – his/her methods.

We must also remember that you may not want to be mentored by someone who is a very aggressive risk taker. Or you may not want to be mentored by someone who makes money by being a small, but consistent winner.

There is more to trading than making money. I agree that this is the bottom line, but the ability of the graduated students to trade well on their own is truly the best measure of the mentor’s ability.

Excellent comments, Mark, thank you for this helpful insight! When I taught flying my students expected me to know how to fly; though there are indeed helpful ground instructors who don’t fly but who can teach flying well.

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