According to one veteran trader, forex education can take anywhere from a few months to 3 years, depending on a person’s level of experience or aptitude. That’s quite a learning curve and plenty of time for despondency to set in from your partner or family members as they see you sat in front of a computer screen hour after hour, and no money coming in as a result of your efforts.
Thankfully there are simple steps you can take to cut the learning curve in half. If you are an absolute beginner and know nothing about the Forex, then you need to spend a few hours reading up on Forex basics, educating yourself on the terminology and how the market works. Then open a demo account with an online broker and devote a few days to getting thoroughly familiar with your trading platform and charting package. Learn the various menu options and how to put in entry orders quickly, setting your entry point, stops and limits so the procedure becomes second nature.
Once you have laid that foundation you can now start moving up the learning ladder. The following suggestions will significantly reduce the time it takes to become a profitable trader:
1. Invest in a Forex education package
Not all Forex education materials are born equal. A lot of what is out on the internet is full of ‘fluff’ and ‘filler’, written by people who deal with theory but do not actually trade themselves. So in choosing a Forex education package be sure the people behind it are professional traders themselves with a successful track record. Often, by putting the name of the Forex education course in Google you can check out forums and user comments which can be revealing.
2. Maintain an ongoing Forex education
Once you have gone through your Forex education course once you need to do it again and again. In other words, you have an ongoing Forex education. Why is it important to go through the course materials a number of times? Because there is so much information it is not possible for the brain to absorb it all at once. As you practice and develop as a trader, information you previously read which didn’t make much sense at the time, will now take on new meaning as you associate it with actual trading scenarios you may have had as you progress in trading.
3. Take notes and create a diary
This is a biggie! Every successful trader I know has made a record, taking note of their good trades and losing trades as they gain experience. True, it involves work and effort. But in the long run, this single step alone will significantly cut down your learning curve. Without taking notes and doing a post-mortem on your trades, you can go on repeating the same mistakes over and over. This is time consuming, frustrating, and exhausting. By keeping a record you are able to identify patterns of trading behavior you need to correct. These days with free screen capture utilities available on the net, you can just save a gif or jpg image of your charting screen, print it off, and write notes all over it, highlighting features on the chart that made you do what you did. Going back over these print outs and learning from them is a very, very powerful method for bringing you up to speed as a successful trader.
4. Keep studying the charts
There is no short cut for this. You will need to spend hours going over the charts, identifying patterns, trends, support & resistance lines etc. The more time you spend doing this, the quicker you will develop a feel for the market. After much practice these elements will jump out at you every time you just glance at a chart. That’s the stage you want to reach, instant recognition. Rather than blindly continuing day after day, practicing in a demo account and getting nowhere:
Invest in a professional Forex education course
Maintain an ongoing education by repeat readings
Keep records and carefully analyze your trades
Invest time in developing instant chart pattern recognition
These four key points, when applied, will give focus and direction to your Forex education and your learning curve will be significantly reduced. Why not explain to your partner or other family members your program or plan of action so they know what to expect? Help them realize this business involves a large investment of time and energy until the skills are acquired and with perseverance and application your Forex education will result in a substantial income.