19 Tips for Trading in the Zone

Trading in the zone – it is a wonderful vibe.

You are on the top of world.

Trading on top of the world

No object is too tall; no trade setup or analysis too difficult.

All charts are picture clear and you are totally in sync with them.

The trades seem to develop quicker and hit the TP’s more often.

The equity curve has a great angle.

Is this reality or are we viewing things through a rosy lens? Well, probably a bit of both :)

Here is a list of elements when I am IN the zone:

  1. Trading in the zone is a great rhythm. It ensures that I stay confident in my approach, setups and analysis but without any arrogance or over-confidence and with a natural and humble respect for the market.
  2. Trading in the zone means that I keep my analysis simple yet effective. I remember that trading is not easy but overcomplicating matters does not help me – at all.
  3. Trading in the zone means that I am following my trading plan, following my trade management plan, and implementing my evaluations.
  4. Trading in the zone is balancing a ton of emotions that can be pulling and impacting my thoughts before, during and after a trade. Primarily, it’s about managing my own self-talk before and during a trade setup.
  5. So in that regard, trading in the zone means that I am upbeat and have a positive mindset.
  6. Trading in the zone usually means that there are trends in play and I am capitalizing on those trends via the Double Trend Trap trading system.
  7. Trading in the zone means I have optimal focus on the charts and am not distracted by mobile phones, news, impatience, fear, need, hope and greed (and I am not thinking about the upcoming sports match).
  8. Trading in the zone means that I am open to interpreting new information quicker and I am more adaptable to change.

focus when trading

Here is a list of elements when I want to get BACK into the zone:

  1. I analyze my trade statistics, trade setups, entries, trade management decisions and exits rigorously. Remember that the best professionals of any field are always preparing themselves day in and day out constantly and consistently.
  2. I keep trying. A losing streak never finishes if a trader stops. Just like in baseball, a trader needs to keep swinging to get back into the rhythm. I practice more paper trading, more testing, more demo trading.
  3. I focus on the details. A slightly better entry order can be the difference between a win and a loss. Avoiding a mistake in trade management could be the difference between a full win and loss. Don’t let your mind wonder about the equity curve; keep it focused on the trade setups and the trades.
  4. I decrease the mental pressure of not being in the zone. When expectations are not being met, pressure can easily mount up quickly and the subsequent weight on the shoulders can do more harm than good. Step back and relax and work on points 1, 2 and 3 instead of freezing up.
  5. I decrease the risk at a certain point. The pressure is already high enough; it is vital to keep one’s focus on trading and implementation rather than the PnL (profit and loss) of an open trade.
  6. I evaluate the market conditions. What is the optimal market structure for my strategy to thrive in? And how does that compare to current market conditions? Am I implementing my strategy incorrectly or are the market conditions making my strategy struggle?
  7. If anyone is not already trading with the trend and momentum, then I recommend them to do so. Trading with the trend and momentum makes life a lot easier for Forex traders. Our Double Trend Trap Strategy is specifically geared towards simplifying the process of trend and momentum trading for all types of traders.

What do you do in these cases? Are there things you recognize or do different?

Here is a list of pointers when I am in the zone and want to STAY there:

  1. I keep my routine going. Staying in the flow is all about consistent repetition. When there is a good vibe, why change something or anything for that matter.
  2. I ride the tide and keep the trend alive. Remember that trends are very powerful –not only on the charts but also with trading streaks. Keep track of it and write down why trading is going so smoothly. Also, remember the state of mind at this time and what you are thinking.
  3. I keep evaluating and practicing. Yes the fun does not stop just because we are on a (small) roll! We keep working at it. Just because we keep the routine going, does not mean we stop with sensible and useful analysis. :)
  4. I avoid overconfidence. Just because we have a good win streak does not mean we can predict the future; nor can we fly to the moon without an engine. Keep your feet on the ground and remain realistic. Don’t start betting the farm on a win streak. Keep your discipline in check at all times.

These are a number of improvement points that I have implemented and experienced. But it could be WAAAAAY different for you.

What do you do when you are out of the zone?

And what do you do when you are in it?

How does being the zone look like for YOU?

Remember, everyone has their own approaches; only you know what is best for YOU. But I hope that this article will provide you with inspirational tips and tricks that might snap you back into an upswing. Or keep you riding on one of those long profit waves.

All feedback is welcome, because your tip might be the one that reaches out to other traders and could help them enormously.

Thanks for reading and sharing this article and wish you Happy Trading!

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Chris is the head of the mentoring program and trading room at Winner's Edge Trading. He has a passion for technical analysis and helping Forex traders achieve their goals in trading. Chris has been trading for almost 10 years and is most fond of the Double Trend Trap (as a strategy), moving averages (as an indicator) and Fibonacci (as a tool).

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  • Chris

    Thank you Edith! :) Also thanks for the feedback – we appreciate the time you take to write down your experiences. Going back to basic and simplifying the analysis is a good approach. Often enough traders make their lives more complicated during a rough patch. Good job

  • Edith Helwegen

    Great article Chris! To go back in the zone again I go back to basic. That’s what I call it. Review trade setups, reading and writing in my tradingdiary where I describe my emotions, clear my screens and start to watch them at a larger timeframe with my strategy and the checklist I’ve made. Discuss trades with other traders.