All traders, regardless of whether they trade options, stocks, exchange traded funds (ETFs) or futures, aren’t created equal. But there are certain characteristics that everyone should strive to have in order to be the very best traders they can be.

Price Headley of Trading Markets states that good traders must do two things:

  • Traders should master the internal ego. Once you let go of your ego, it will clear the way for you to further your self-education. Refusing to acknowledge mistakes or accept any help or assistance will only hamper you in the long run and prevent you from growing as a trader.
  • Keep your trading private.  Why? Many traders know how damaging a lack of confidence can ultimately be, so many of the more experienced ones don’t risk breaking it by talking to others. Headley notes that amateurs shout their trades from the rooftops, which can ultimately lead to a bruised ego once you’re forced to acknowledge to those same people that a trade didn’t work.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t discuss anything with others or isolate yourself as a trader. The people around you can be a wealth of information when it comes to strategies, ideas and learning experiences. On the other hand, take what you hear from people with a grain of salt and do your own due diligence before you take a position. Don’t always believe what you hear from others, and do what’s right for you.

    In addition to these two points, it’s important not to let emotions to drive trades. By settling on a strategy that works for you and sticking to it, you can ultimately position yourself for success.

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    Kevin Grewal contributed to this article.

    The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.