In this article I will talk about:

  • My experience

  • What to write in the diary?

  • Exmple of a trading jornal in excel.


  • When I first started trading in the financial market, I did not have a trading journal. I just wanted to make money and I thought a trading diary was completely unnecessary.

    But now looking back, it's clear to me that I was wrong about that. In fact, it was my insistence on not using a trading diary that prevented my progress.
    For a long time, I've been losing money on the market without understanding why. It was only later when I started using a trading journal that I realized I was repeating the same mistakes without being aware of it.


    Image 1 - Take notes.

    Now let's make a simple test.

    Do you think you are repeating the same mistakes in trading?
    Do you think you're repeating the same mistakes in trading?

    The poit is regardless of your answer, how do you know it's the truth? Subjectivity hinders progress, if you think you're repeating the same mistakes, how do you know that this is indeed the case?

    If you think you're not repeating the same mistakes, how do you know? We tend to respond to questions like these spontaneously.

    Unfortunately, people tend to see what they want to see and believe in what they want to believe.

    Subjectivity prevents progress!

    Whether you like it or not, the most reliable way to remember trading decisions is to write them down. In this way, these decisions will not be colored by our mental and emotional prejudices when we try to remember them later.

    If I can use an analogy, keeping an updated trading journal is like driving a car with clean windscreens.
    We can easily tell where we were, and where we are going.

    On the other hand, trading without a trading diary is like driving a car with the dirty windshields. We may think we know where we wanted to be, but in reality we are in a completely different place than we had in mind.

    What to write in the diary?

    The ultimate goal of a trading journal is to provide an objective way to check our answer to the question: Did I follow my trading plan?

    Before we enter on the trade, just register:

    • An image of the graph;

    • The levels of entry;

    • Stop loss and profit target;

    • Any fundamental reason that led you to open the trade;

    • My mood( i am happy, normal, sick, sad, agitated, angry, etc... ).



    After the trade is closed, just register:

    • An image of the graph;

    • Record on the chart where the trade was closed;

    • Answer the question: Did I follow my trading plan?

    • And that's it.In doing so, we would have a number of trades to review at the end of each week.


    When reviewing each trade, we could ask:

    • Why did I lose this trade?

    • Did i follow my trading plan?

    • What did I do wrong?

    • Did i made a correct Money management?

    • Did I miss or did I forget something?

    • Is this an acceptable mistake?

    • Was it preventable?

    • Why did I gain this trade?

    • What did I do right?


    Exmple of a trading jornal in excel.


    Image 2 - Trading log.


    Image 3 - Profit/Loss Report.


    Image 4 - Trading plan and history.


    Image 5 - Improvement.

    If you can do this on a regular basis, you'll be well ahead of most traders. Simply because you will be improving based on an objective measure while the majority continues to depend on subjective and spontaneous memories.

    Unfortunately, keeping a trading diary is often considered the most annoying aspect of trading, and that is why most people neglect it.

    The good news is that once you begin to figure out the mistakes you are making (through your trading diary), the process will quickly become enjoyable and perhaps even a little addictive.
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