How to keep a trading journal ? (step 5) – Updated

After paper trading or backtesting your trading strategy, you should keep a journal of your trading experiences. This is where a trading journal can help.

A trading journal can be maintained in a variety of ways. A trading journal can be maintained in Excel, a digital diary, or a notebook.

Keeping a trading journal is an important part of any trader’s day. It can be used to keep track of trades, assess performance and identify trends. In this article we will explore the benefits of keeping a trading journal, as well as what it should contain.

What is a trading journal?

Trading journal

A trading journal is a notebook in which you keep track of all your trade-related information.

You can keep track of your trading strategy, entry and exit points, profit and loss, reasons, and so on.

What are the types of trading journals?

There are 2 types of maintaining a trading journal.

Manual trading journal

In a manual trading journal, you will manually record all of the details in a notebook, digital dairy apps, or a simple excel sheet.

Automated trading journal

You will need to import or sync your trading account into an automated trading journal site so that it can pull all of the details from it and do all of the repetitive work for you.

Why do you need a trading journal?

Pros :

Maintaining a trading journal allows you to see where you went wrong and where you need to improve.


It assists you in determining the best strategy with the highest win rate.

You will have enough data to refer to even years later.

You will be less likely to make mistakes in the future since you’ve seen where you went wrong in your own words.

It assists you in holding yourself accountable.


You will be able to track your profit and loss as well.

Cons

Manual trade journal :

Entering all of the details and performing the calculations takes time.

You cannot achieve the potential results unless you are true to yourself.

Automated trade journal :

You must import or sync your data, which may not be completely secure.

How to keep a trading journal?

You can record all important trading details in rows and columns or simple hand drawn lines in a manual trading journal.

In an automated trading journal, make sure the site or app contains all of the information you need for future reference.

The most important parameters to track

Strategy name and details,

Date and time of entry and exit,

Entry and exit price,

Planned vs actual entry and exits,

Profit or loss,

My mistakes,

Where I was right etc.

Other important details include

Initial capital,

Closing capital,

Deposited / withdrawn,

Global market direction,

Local market direction,

Are there any external factors affecting the market,

Technical position,

Fundamental position,

My prediction,

Where to keep a trading journal ?

You can keep a trading journal in a variety of ways, including the ones listed below.

  • You can use a simple notebook to keep a trading journal.
  • You can also use excel sheets to maintain a trading journal. Check out this video to learn more..
  • You can also use note taking apps like notion to record everything. Check out this video to learn how to use Notion to do it.
  • You can also take screenshots of the charts, positions, profit and loss of the day in the portfolio and later record every detail in a notebook.
  • You can also record a quick audio, video or screen record your trades to keep a trading journal.

Lessons learnt

Though it takes time for me to record all of the details after each trade, I always make sure to keep a record of everything in some form or another. I alternately use the Notion app and screenshots.

It has helped me identify my mistakes and reduced it to a greater extent.

It also helped me avoid emotional mistakes while trading.

Where to learn about trading journal for free?

You can actually track every little detail in your trading journal, but these are the most important things you should track in your trading journal.

Takeaways

  • Trading journal is a notebook in which you can record all of the trading related details.
  • You can keep a trading journal in a manual or automated way.
  • Keeping a trading journal helps your trading psychology to a greater extent.

Resources

You can use my excel template for free. Click here.

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Ramya Vaidyanathan

Self-made independent trader who primarily trades stocks, forex, and cryptocurrency! Specialized in M.Sc. Biotechnology & M.B.A. Loves to learn and share everything that can make people's lives easier. Life hacks are the focus of Art of Hacks, a brand website. This website, in particular, focuses on financial hacks such as trading, digital entrepreneurship, and saving hacks. Feel free to comment, share and subscribe to your preferred category! To learn more about trading and my trading journey, subscribe to my YouTube channel Female Trader Ramya!

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