In a recent post, Adam Grimes offers a number of helpful thoughts and advice for developing traders. He makes the very valuable point that many of the psychological challenges of trading resolve themselves once basic, fundamental components of trading are properly addressed.

I'd like to add an observation to Adam's excellent list of must-do's for evolving traders. The observation was inspired by a group coaching exercise I performed yesterday with the developing traders at SMB. They came to my session probably expecting me to deliver a talk on a psychology-related topic. Instead, I began by going around the room asking each attendee to name the one goal they were working on in that day's trading. To their credit, the traders were able to quickly articulate what they were attempting to accomplish.

My observation is that the rate of development in a trader critically hinges upon: 1) keeping score with one's trading; 2) using score-keeping to identify clear aspects of trading to work on; and 3) the manner in which one actually works on those goals. This third component turns out to be particularly important.