But things began to change a few years ago when he joined Jason Bond's mentoring service and found out that he had a excellent service with a great mentor named Jeff Bishop. After the sale of his successful civil contracting business, Howard decided to devote more time and attention to his stock trading education.
Howard regards patience as crucial to his and any trader’s success, “I can't emphasize enough how important it is to be patient,” he says. “Using all the resources being provided to you to learn why and how certain techniques work, being consistent in trading, plus being adaptable and modifying your techniques to the markets.”
"Over the years, I've wasted thousands of dollars buying subscriptions trying to learn the right way to consistently make money in the stock market."
Why Successful Traders Never Stop Learning
Even the simplest of trading charts can look confusing to the beginner. And when overlaid with all sorts of obscure technical indicators such as Bollinger Bands, RSI, Stochastic oscillators and Fibonacci numbers these charts may seem incomprehensible.
Truth be told; many of these indicators are more straight-forward in concept than they first appear. Nonetheless, gaining a more in-depth understanding of how they interact and how to use them is something which takes time.
Now let’s add to that all the company fundamentals of which traders need to be aware, not to mention the broader economic and political issues which could impact the markets, and it’s easy to see why trading can and does require lifelong learning for even the sharpest of professional traders.
None of this is meant to be discouraging, but it is an argument for bringing caution and, yes, patience to the task.
The Supreme Importance of Patience in Live Trading
It takes patience when waiting for a potential trade to reach its predetermined entry point according to your trading plan, and in waiting for it to hit your profit target. It takes patience to wait for the next opportunity if you miss an entry because of a sudden surge in price, or because you were away from your screen.
It takes patience to wait out blank days or weeks, rather than discarding your trading plan to get into sub-optimal or even downright risky trades just because you miss the adrenaline and dopamine surge that comes from trading live in the markets.
You also need the patience to let your trades develop once you’re invested. Just because a stock doesn’t move towards your target as quickly as you anticipated, doesn’t mean it never will.
Likewise, an apparently profitable trade may start to lose ground before the price reaches your profit target. It may even fall below your entry level. It’s tempting to cut the loss you now anticipate by getting out of the trade. Once again, patience is the key to success in many cases. As long as you have a well-thought-out stop loss in place, you should have nothing to fear from letting the trade play out.
And it’s all too maddeningly common for trades to start moving into profit again just as soon as the impatient traders have booked their losses.
“The main thing is understanding why a trade works or doesn't work, Jeff Bishop shares his gains and losses, and that is what the market is all about. I'm learning how sticking to trading rules is what prevails in consistent gains.”
Treat Your Trading as a Long-Term Learning Project
The key, as Howard Weston put it, is to treat your trading as a long-term project and to proceed cautiously as you develop your technical skills and emotional consistency:
“Be patient and don't focus on dollars gained, but percentages. Start with small dollar values, and I can't overemphasize education, you might as well have the mindset you are in college because you’re investing money and time into your future.”
“The main thing is understanding why a trade works or doesn't work, Jeff Bishop shares his gains and losses, and that's what the market is all about. I'm learning how sticking to trading rules is what prevails in consistent gains,” he says.
For the time being, Howard’s goal is to learn as much as he can about a variety of different trading styles and use that knowledge to build his own trading plan.
“I have multiple RagingBull subscriptions. Why? Because I wanted to be able to take what information I learned from the different traders to adapt to my trading style. I honestly use multiple techniques to make money slowly and consistently. I haven't made hundreds of thousands, but by being slow and diligent I've been consistent, and that is what I'm striving for,” he explained.
It’s true that Howard is now in the fortunate position of having ample time and resources to devote to his trading education, but the approach he advocates is a sound one for all traders to follow.
Taking the time to develop a trading plan that suits your preferences and objectives, while cultivating the self-discipline to stick with it in spite of the inevitable losses, is the path to building consistency and the confidence that comes with it.
“I have multiple RagingBull subscriptions. Why? Because I wanted to be able to take what information I learned from the different traders to adapt to my trading style. I honestly use multiple techniques to make money slowly and consistently."
The Big Rewards That Come With Consistent Small Wins
Never underestimate the mathematical power of compound growth. Regular small wins combined with cautious increases in the dollar amounts of your trades can quickly lead to an ever-expanding trading account.
For Howard Weston, this strategy has already enabled him to take his wife and their five kids (ages 14 to 22) on a cruise to the Caribbean. In spite of his success, Howard sees this as just the beginning. That’s why he's looking forward to many years of increasing his income and capital for the benefit of family, friends, and good causes that are close to his heart.