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Day Trading Journal


I am thinking about starting and keeping a day trading journal. What are the advantages and disadvantages to keep my day trading journal online or private for myself?
If you keeping it online in a forum like this it has the advantage of comments, criticism and help from other traders.

There may be some things of a personal nature that you want to record that explain your mental state when trading that you do not want to share with the general public and for that reason you may want to keep it offline.

What I think is a good idea is to do both. Create a word (or other) document and then write your journal in full in this document that you keep on your local computer.

Then copy and paste just the parts that you are comfortable sharing to the forum.
DT's suggestions are good. Basically keep as much detail as you can given the time that you have to write. I used to keep a written journal but then found that I was flipping through pages looking for stuff that I had written months before. I then switched to keeping the journal electronically which is better but the problem is that you cannot sketch charts and pictures like you can in a hand written notebook. The big advantage to the electronic journal is that you quickly search through the journal to find things that you have done before.

This is especially useful after you have a few months of notes. Another thing that I do in the journal is to add key words at certain points so that I can always search for the same key words. This is like indexing my notes. If I used MACD in some way for a trade or wanted to make a note about it then I will always just type in MACD and then if I want to research how often I used MACD in my trading I can just search back through the document for MACD.
I don't know? I have kept notes for 4 years now for every day of the year end let me tell you something I have change my trading stile and system so many times that If I go back and read through them witch I have? I get so confused and dizzy, but I still do keep them but now what I do is I only keep 10 days worth in front of me.
Do you hand write your notes or type them out?
I hand write them the only e-notes i have is a chart snap shots. I have this Little nifty free software that takes deck top pictures only the parts you wont.
What software do you use for that inventor? SnagIt?
quote:
Originally posted by George Soros

What software do you use for that inventor? SnagIt?



NWSnap
Thanks for the info inventor. I have started a new topic for this type of software which is always useful for traders and the price is right for everyone: Screen Capture Software
quote:
Originally posted by inventor

I hand write them the only e-notes i have is a chart snap shots. I have this Little nifty free software that takes deck top pictures only the parts you wont.

Do you print out the charts and keep them with your notes or refer to them on the screen when you are reading through your notes again?
quote:
Originally posted by elite trader

quote:
Originally posted by inventor

I hand write them the only e-notes i have is a chart snap shots. I have this Little nifty free software that takes deck top pictures only the parts you wont.

Do you print out the charts and keep them with your notes or refer to them on the screen when you are reading through your notes again?



Well I do both and I also print it on a photo paper not for studding but for quick reference. i found out that the market has so many moves and variations that is hard to save all of them so If I see a setup of mine that is working i take a pic with MWSnap get it here [url]http://www.mirwoj.opus.chelm.pl/winfreeware/mwsnap.html[/url] and save it. this tool is so good that you can take snap shots as fast as you can click and it goes directly to the folder you set up.
Retaining accurate records is of such a high importance it cannot be stressed enough.

Exercising discipline is vital when implementing your trading system regardless of it being technical or fundamental, so too is the subject of Money Management which should include keeping a diary. Without following strict fiscal rules you are limiting your chances of survival long term. Disciplined sound money management rules should be written into your trading plan and clearly define what percentage of your account is available to risk per position and decide how many lots to buy, a diary should be able to assist with risk management.

Keeping an accurate account of your trading activities has a positive effect on your psychology. You can view your past history to evaluate where to fine tune or implement a new trading system as trading is a business and should be treated as such. Much like a shop retains sales and inventory records so should a trader.

A trading diary is a valuable tool to be used to aid the direction of your trading activities.

Capital preservation is paramount to your long term survival; ignore at your own peril.