In the simplest sense of the word, worrying is to feel concerned or uncomfortable, oftentimes (but not always) in anticipation of a negative event or outcome. After all, we’re all human and we have the basic need to avoid pain.
For forex traders, the major sources of psychological pain tend to involve losing capital and/or being on the wrong side of trades.
Along with these issues, our worries can be compounded with concerns of missing trade opportunities or forgetting an important variable during analysis. As we can imagine, our list of worries can go on and on.
Why is it a problem?
For instance, you might have experienced impulsively changing your profit and stop loss levels only to find out that your original forex levels were correct in the first place.
Because you let your worries of losing or being wrong get to you, you ended up not following your trading plan.
Fear and worrying redirects our focus from the situation at hand and we may end up making impulsive or irrational trade decisions. Even worse, sitting there and worrying about something without taking action can be unproductive and a plain waste of time.
How do you use worrying to your advantage?
Worrying can be used as a signal for different issues: maybe you could have planned better, your position may be overleveraged, or maybe you may be avoiding a harsher reality outside of forex trading.
If you catch yourself worrying about the small details that you think you shouldn’t obsess about, ask yourself, “What am I really afraid of?”
Let’s say you realize that you’ve been obsessing about your losing trade and it’s only 0.1% of your account. You have to ask yourself what it is that you’re truly afraid of. Is it the future of your trading career? Your monthly mortgage payment? Your wife’s reaction?
Whatever it may be, imagine yourself in this worst-case scenario and think about what you’re going to do if you were actually in it.
This self-critical exercise is called visualization and it may give you more feeling of control over the situations that you’re dreading.
Once you’ve identified the root of your worries, then you can start working on them so they will stop distracting you from your trading process.
Remember that like other high-performance endeavor, forex trading demands all of your attention and aptitude. Using visualization when you feel worried can help you eliminate other concerns and help you focus on becoming a better forex trader.