I’m sure most of you aspire to become full-time traders but until then, you’re going to have to be accustomed to the idea that you’ll be balancing both work and trading at the same time. Being a fellow alt+tab warrior myself, I think a topic that’s not so often discussed is how you can balance both things at the same time. Here are some tips and tricks I’ve learned that might be able to help you work and trade at the same time:
1. Apply for a stock alert service
Let’s face it, you don’t want to get caught by your superior staring at your broker for long periods of time while you wait for your entry points. One possible solution for this is just to apply for a stock alert service which notifies you in real-time when your entry prices have been hit. The one I’m using right now is Investagrams’ InvestaWatcher. It notifies you via facebook messenger, email, and/or text depending on your preference (I’ve turned the email off on mine). It is as real-time as it can get aside from the SMS feature which might really be the telco’s fault. It’s a relatively small price to pay for the peace of mind it brings that you don’t have to constantly monitor the stocks in your watchlist.
2. Executing and monitoring on your mobile
Since my broker doesn’t have a mobile app, I use 2 programs to be able to monitor and execute trades on my mobile phone. The first program is the app “Teamviewer”. It allows me to remotely access my laptop as long as both mobile and laptop have internet access. It’s free, easy to use and I can even leave my laptop running at home and access it on my phone. My backup plan here in case something goes wrong with my laptop is to contact my broker to have them execute my orders.
When I’m in the office and I don’t want to keep on alt+tabbing to my broker’s program, I use the app “Spacedesk” which enables my phone to act as an extended monitor for my laptop as long as they’re connected to the same network. By doing so, this lets me keep my momentum at work while being able to glance at my broker’s platform from time to time. It’s free and easy to use with the only downside being that, it doesn’t have a retractable keyboard to input buy and sell orders. To address this, I installed an app on my laptop that gives it a numerical keyboard that overlaps on any program like a sticky note. There are other numerical keyboard apps out there but the one I’m using is just called “Numpad”. It’s free, simple and basic which is just what I needed to execute (https://sourceforge.net/projects/numpad-emulator/)
I know how alluring the potential to earn is in the stock market but I think for part-time traders, it might help if we look at it as an added revenue stream rather than our only ticket out of the rat race. True, getting out of the workforce is and can be your end goal but getting too absorbed into that idea might lead you to keep on taking risky trades or even overtrade. There’s nothing wrong with studying hard to achieve your dream of becoming a fulltime trader but when you take trades expecting that this will be that one trade that will enable you to resign, you have to be extra careful about it. Hoping for that single jackpot trade and then setting yourself free from the confines of the office is a train of thought provocative enough to make it difficult to keep your emotions intact. Quality trades are made in one’s neutral state. If you desire to pursue fulltime trading, being a part-time trader can be seen as a time to slowly build your portfolio by making consistent winning trades. You can also view your current situation as a time where you are in a safer learning environment compared to fulltime traders who consistently lose on a monthly basis. I assure you, you can’t even imagine the pressure behind those losing fulltime traders.
Trading gives you the freedom to choose between working or not. If you enjoy working, especially being around with your colleagues, then that’s okay. Nobody’s forcing you to become a full-time trader nor would anybody judge you for not pursuing fulltime trading despite being profitable. Trading gives you the opportunity to do whatever you want in life. To work or not work, it is entirely up to you