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Enhancing Trader Performance: Proven Strategies From the Cutting Edge of Trading Psychology

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Through his own trading experiences and those of individuals he has mentored, Dr. Brett Steenbarger is familiar with the challenges that traders face and the performance and psychological strategies that can meet those challenges. In Enhancing...
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Timmy4210 gaylord , mi

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Don't just read it. Absorb it.
First, to keep things totally above board, let me state for the record that Brett Steenbarger wrote the forward to my book, The Essentials of Trading. He and I became aquainted through my editorial work with Trade2Win. When my book was near completion, I asked Brett to give it a look knowing that he was involved in trader training and development. The forword followed from that.

Brett's new book, Enhancing Trader Performance, is his second, following on the heels of his extremely successful and worthwhile initial release, The Psychology of Trading. I would not, though, call it a sequel. While the latter part of the new work does bring in major elements of what the first book covered, the majority of it has a quite different focus

Enhancing Trader Performance is primarily about developing trading expertise. As someone who has spent his fair share of time teaching and coaching on a variety of levels and in different theaters of pursuit, some of which were extremely competitive and performance oriented, I was immediately grabbed by Brett's presentation. And it never let me go - literally pages of notes later.

This book may not be for everyone. It clearly has a bias which leans more toward the full-time and/or short-term trader than someone who traders longer-term and/or on a more part-time basis. This is a natural function of Brett's work helping professional traders with their development and to overcome performance hurdles, along with his own personal efforts in the market, which are short-term in nature as well.

That said, there is still a ton of extremely useful material for any trader, new or experienced. Enhancing Trader Performance provides a sort of roadmap toward developing trading expertise. This isn't about the mental part of actually making trades and managing positions. Rather it is more a discussion of how one becomes more than just a competent trader.

Coaching is a major theme, with Brett clearly being a proponent of traders having coaches who can assist them in their development similar to the way they would an athlete. I personally tend to disagree with the way he uses "coach" and "mentor" interchangably as I consider the two to be different, but that does not detract from the overall message. Importantly, since it can be difficult for the individual trader to get in to a good coaching relationship, Brett shares plenty of tips and advice for how a trader can be their own coach.

The one major carryover from The Psychology of Trading is the use of the stories of actual people - either real or composite. They really help to drive home the points Brett is making, and in a fashion easily relatable by the reader.

In short, read this book if it is at all your objective to excel at trading. More than that, take your time and really absorb it. Read it once, then read it again. I know I will.

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BigBenjamins Newport, South Wales

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High Rating
I gave a high rating to the author's first book "Psychology of Trading" with a review title "Well researched and written, but not for the mass" in that it suits perfectly those with medium or above knowledge of psychology. It's hardly a coincidence, that the second book of the author is also targeted at the professionals, or, to be specific, professional traders who can enjoy systemized training/mentoring offered by their institutions. For traders like me who dont have such priviledges, nearly half of it became quite irrelevant and remote. Definitely worth a read, especially the part elaborating the linkage between practice and expertise, but not as useful nor insightful as fans of his first book might expect.

p.s. Below please find some of my favorite passages for your reference.

Competence precedes confidence: Winning mindsets result from mastery, not the reverse pg 4

When you have found your niche, you dont need discipline to do the right things; you wont want to do anything else. pg 29

Markets, like people, have their personalities; our relationships with markets will profit to the extent that there is compatibility. pg 35

Evolution occurs when we are so taxed that we must make fresh adaptive efforts. The expert is one who continually adapts to extraordinary performance demands. pg 119

How to trade and what to trade are subordinate to when to trade. pg151

Amateur traders turn into professional traders once they stop looking for the next great technical indicator and start controlling their risk on each trade. - John Carter pg 156

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Soccerscott Denver, Co

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Good
The key point in this book is that expertise is different from competence

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DannyCaliOc Sushi, CA

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Loved it
I really do think that trading is all about psychology and this book does teach you a lot. The book is very practical and I had no trouble reading through it. It profiles real traders that Steenbarger works with at a prop trading firm. Lots of wisdom here which I know will save you lots of money, but you will have to go over it and over it and over it because this stuff is much easier said than done.

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5 of 5 people have found this review helpful.
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Luke11 Charleston, SC

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Great Book On Trading Psychology
Knowing the charts isn't enough... you must know how to control your emotions and risk as well. This book will help you with that to help you make a complete trader.

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Ankitpatel Ames, Iowa

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Long-winded, bombastic
I recommend this book. this book is has valuable nuggets of wisdom, However, the book is too long-winded, academic.... it needs to be summarized into a more understandable form. Advice is good if you are a patient reader

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Angelajk Ellicott City, MD

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Worth it
I am a big fan of most books the deal with psychology, because psychology is the biggest determiner of success in performance fields like trading. This book is good because it isn't written from a purely academic point of view. It actually profiles real traders that Steenbarger works with at a prop trading firm. The profile of a trader named Marc Greenspoon makes this book worth the price alone.

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Read his latest
This is an excellent book, but go buy his Daily Trading Coach book instead. It has everything this book does in an easier to read format and has much more as well.

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Betheball Santa Barbara, CA

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