What it takes to be really good at something (including trading e-mini futures)

I took this advice from, of all places, mathoverflow.net, a site for serious math buffs, many of them professionals, so you can trust it because these guys mean business. Not to mention that they are smarter than a typical wannabe trader who will most likely ignore it. The advice, that is. But that would be his loss. Again.

It's not that this is so different (if at all) from what I have said in more than one place on this site, or on my e-mini futures blog, or in the KING e-mini trading course that has become my flagship product. In fact, this is pretty universal advice and so no wonder you can also find it on the pages frequented by mathematicians.

Here it is. Three simple rules to become good at something, be it writing popular math books, playing guitar, or trading emini futures.

1. Aim high. Don't flatter yourself that you're already pretty good. If you have not already worked hard at honing your skill, chances are you suck. Study the masters. Why are they so much better than you are? Identify what makes their performances shine, and train yourself at the same techniques.

2. Ferret out your weaknesses ruthlessly and work hard at eliminating them. If you can't see your own weaknesses, find a coach who can. Don't get defensive if someone criticizes you; welcome all criticism and try to extract something useful from any feedback you get.

3. Practice regularly. This means taking the time to work at improving your skill even when there is no immediate reward.

The credit for the rules goes to Timothy Chow. Thanks, Timothy. I hope you don't mind my spreading your wisdom.