How to trade Smart and Casual when under stress, or suffering from mental illness?


Depression, anxiety are increasingly common.

So far I’ve been blogging in a pretty lighthearted manner. And on reflection, I haven’t really talked much about what goes behind the scenes of the Smart Casual Trading method. I’ve shared about drawdown in my Forex Help SG Group on Facebook, where I aim to help struggling traders in forex.

I realize, the way I have pitched the way I trade as being Smart, Casual, may give the impression that I may be making it sound too good to be true. So I felt, okay. It’s time for me to reveal a little bit more behind what appears to be a lighthearted approach towards trading.

I still believe very strongly, and have the results to show, that being smart and casual towards trading forex is the best approach. But I must say it is very hard to do so under certain situations. And such is life.

I have a strange type of depression for many years. I am not a happy-go-lucky kind of person. In fact, I take things too seriously most of the times.  I have swings and down cycles of mood, and it shows on my face very clearly.

Stress, depression, anxiety are increasingly common. And yet, these are what pushes some to seek solutions to their problems at work, at home: Money is one of the best ways to buy temporary relief, or even permanent relief, if the source of stress comes from struggling with income.

The sharks are out there seeking these poor suffering souls, promising “no risk” secrets to trading to make hundreds a day. And when the truth comes out, these souls sink deeper into debt and depression.

I am fortunate to have no major issues with money. I live frugally, and the only debt I have is towards my car, which I have taken up as a challenge to test the Smart Casual Trading method rather than as a reward or as an impulsive purchase; as well as for my flat, a modest 4 room BTO which is great value for money. And of course, the debt to my parents, for their unwavering support through the darkest times of my life.

But despite these fortunes, the internal emotional mechanisms are broken, and I have lived with them for many years.

Hence it is indeed strange, that a person like myself would come up with a “Smart Casual Trading” style, which emphasizes on being chill, lighthearted, and emotionally on the lighter side.

Perhaps it is precisely because I find it stressful and emotionally draining to trade forex, that I had to make it smart casual. I had to make it comfortable. I had to make it lighthearted. I had to make it possible, even for those who are deemed by professionals to be “out of their league”.

My dear friends. We are in a league of our own. We have an edge against the so-called professionals that only we ourselves, as individuals, can find, and sharpen the edge, and use it against the professionals.

So don’t trade like the pros. Trade smart, and trade casual, because that’s your edge against them.

So the very first principle in the Smart Casual Trading method is baby steps. Babypips is a pretty popular website to learn about forex and I like the approach, taking one pip and a time. Similarly, the Smart Casual Trading method emphasizes on baby steps, starting slow instead of crashing everything you MUST now into a 4 hour course (as an educator, 4 hours of teaching has only maybe 30 minutes of effective learning from students). Hence, there is less stress. The emphasis is on building confidence, slowly.

The second principle is to accept and change our perspectives about failure, that failure is necessary to achieve success. There is plenty of proof of this, but it is still frowned upon. It is up to ourselves to build up our own resilience to failure, which ultimately will launch us above those who never failed before. With this resilience, it builds up emotional strength, and eases our depression, worry, and builds our confidence.

Lastly, the Smart Casual Trading method is all about simplicity, focusing on the process, earning little victories while losing as small as possible, until you hit a breakthrough as you go on your journey. With the breakthrough comes a great surge of confidence. But it doesn’t cure depression, or anxiety. But at least, now, you are ready for the next resistance, the next down cycle, because such is trading. With every breakthrough will come the next resistance. But with your built up resilience, confidence and emotional strength, you have a very sharp edge over those who cruised their way through exams and work as professionals, and finding hard still to beat the market, as you chip at it a little at a time, in a Smart, Casual manner, all the while building up more confidence and resilience, and finally, perhaps with my help, to consistent profits.

I hope this encourages you.

Dedicated to all sufferers of mental illnesses and the accompanying stigma from folks who need to be more aware and mindful of everyday people with hidden, silent illnesses.


1 thought on “How to trade Smart and Casual when under stress, or suffering from mental illness?

  1. Pingback: Tribute to Chester Bennington | Smart. Casual. Trading.™

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