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Delta is a crypto trader, investor and meme connoisseur.
What attracted you to trading?
I feel like trading gives you real freedom. The ability to work without having to rely on anyone else but yourself and your skills, a job where you don’t have to be fake and smile at people just because of social norms, etc. You are free to do what you want, whenever you want. This is something that, even when you have a company and people working for you, is hard to achieve.
How long have you been trading, and what markets have you traded over your career?
I started trading back when I was 15 with $1,000 I gave to my uncle to open an account for me. I traded the S&P and Nasdaq for a few days before I burnt the money away. I gave it another chance when I turned 18 and proceeded to trade US Futures and commodities for 3 years.
I traded the S&P and Nasdaq for a few days before I burnt the money away.
In 2014, while playing a video game, I met someone selling in-game currency for Bitcoin, so I bought some Bitcoin to get the gold from him, and that’s how I discovered crypto.
I believe it was in 2020, a bit before March, when I started trading Bitcoin and Ethereum full-time.
How long did it take you to become profitable? Were there any major milestones where things just started to click?
It took me about six months to stop losing money and become break-even, but only after two years of consistent trading I became profitable. One of the most crucial things that I believe helped is my trading journal. Only by managing a journal can you see what you’re good at, what you should avoid doing and where you can improve.
Most traders observe markets and take trades, but they fail to improve because they don’t record their history and thus can’t analyze their actions to know their weaknesses and strengths.
Only by managing a journal can you see what you’re good at, what you should avoid doing and where you can improve.
Who did you look up to when you first started trading?
Nobody. I was not on Twitter, and I was not looking for any videos online. I guess the closest thing to someone I looked up to is Jesse Livermore from Reminiscences of a Stock Operator. It was the first book I read about trading and pretty much the only one for many years, so it was my only reference. Only later that I found out he killed himself, oops.
Tell us about your most memorable trade.
I have two:
7th of September 2021.
Woke up in the morning with my guts, the charts, and my system all telling me to flip short, so I did. While waiting in the airport with awful WiFi, everything started nuking. BTC and ETH lost close to 20% in an hour or so with all my take profits hitting right as I was about to board my flight. It is memorable because of the speed that everything happened. Generally, my trades tend to span over a few days.
May collapse in 2021.
As BTC fell from 65k to 30k over a few days, I was doing many things wrong. I was overleveraged with no stops and ignoring my original invalidation and adding to losers. If Bitcoin went another $1,000 lower I’d have been liquidated for my entire portfolio. Luckily it didn’t, and I survived.
If Bitcoin went another $1,000 lower I’d have been liquidated for my entire portfolio. Luckily it didn’t, and I survived.
I remember not being able to eat, drink or sit still. This situation I put myself into took not only a mental but a physical toll on me. After the dust settled, I went flat and took a month off. For the whole month, I only studied my journal to understand how I got into the situation and how I can avoid it in the future.
I believe that May 2021 is the biggest turning point in my career as a crypto trader. Learned a lot from it and it scarred me deep enough to prevent any of the issues that caused it from ever happening again.
What’s the best trading advice you’ve been given?
“Stop looking for logic; nothing makes sense.” -A friend of mine who worked at a prop desk told me that back when we were discussing price action back in March 20’. “If the market is irrational, why are you trying to make sense?” CL tweeted it a while back.
The crypto market is just an echo chamber fueled by greed and massive leverage. If there is enough leverage and enough greed, logic is not needed. It turns into a self reinforcing positive feedback loop. When conditions are right you need to turn the IQ knob as low as you can and just ride the wave.
“Stop looking for logic; nothing makes sense.”
What drives you to keep trading?
I believe keeping your mind caught up with something as challenging as trading is healthy and helps in keeping your mental state sharp. Also, I enjoy this job, and it helps me to live the simple life I’m after, I don't need much more than that.
What does ‘making it’ look like to you?
Having the ability to do things only out of joy and will, never necessity.
So many people are in the constant rat race, living in a place they don’t like, working a job they don’t like, being forced to agree with things they don’t like, and sometimes even living with people they don’t like. The day you can do things only because you want to, out of your choice alone, you made it.
The day you can do things only because you want to, out of your choice alone, you made it.
What's the most important quality in a trader and why?
Patience. I found this to be the biggest issue with most traders I’ve spoken to. Lack of patience can affect you in many ways, from harming the ability to sit on your hands when there's no setup, to tricking yourself into thinking that it makes sense to leverage up and take on higher risk. It’s frustrating to see your account growing so slowly that you think leverage might speed it up, and sometimes you might not have a setup for the whole day, and it feels like you haven't been working, but that's the reality of trading. Don’t let your lack of patience ruin you. The hardest trade is no trade.
Don’t let your lack of patience ruin you. The hardest trade is no trade.
How would you describe the way you trade?
I mainly focus on intraday level-to-level swings. While doing that, I also manage my longer-term portfolio from a higher time frame perspective.
Has the way you trade changed over time?
Yes, a lot. When I started trading I was trying many different styles, and I was all over the place. Over time, I realized I’m good at identifying higher timeframe areas where trade will facilitate, and I react to it well, being able to hold a position with conviction.
Every trader should try everything they feel comfortable with until they find something they can back with data from their journal saying it’s profitable and better than everything else they tried.
When I started trading I was trying many different styles, and I was all over the place.
Why do you think you have success trading?
A major part is that I had a safety net of savings that prevented any stress when I started trading. That and the will to continue the push to improve and learn.
Also, at some point, I just learned to enjoy the markets and trading, which made it a fun thing to do, not just for the money but more, and I think that is a massive part of it, too.
What's the worst thing about trading and why?
The need to be patient. Due to the nature of the higher timeframes I trade, I often have to sit and do nothing. It’s challenging to try and keep yourself busy when the market isn’t doing that.
What's something you've learned in the last six months that has made you a better trader?
Something I’ve been focusing on in the last few months that WILL make me a better trader is options. I’ve been studying options and trying to learn how I can use them to improve my edge and system further. I am still in the process and haven’t integrated options as of yet, but I already can tell it will take me a big step further.
What's the mistake you find hardest to avoid when trading?
Patience and greed are the core of almost all the issues most traders have; they go together most of the time and fuel each other. Greed causes a lack of patience, and lack of patience fuels greed. If you learn to control these two you will most likely manage to overcome any other issues you meet.
Stop following internet and Twitter gurus sharing their trade that took them from 100$ to 10 Million. This very, very rarely happens and almost always is fake. Most people I know who made a buck quickly lost it as quickly too.
You have to focus on slow, gradual, CONSISTENT growth. When taking on massive risk, it is simply too hard to be consistent, and with repeated low consistency and high risk comes a short lifespan.
Most of your days as a trader will be slow growth; only once in a very long time do you get an opportunity that will give you that massive rise in growth. Your job is to improve to be able to execute when it comes, learn to be able to identify when it comes, and most importantly, survive to have the ability to trade when it comes.
Patience and greed are the core of almost all the issues most traders have; they go together most of the time and fuel each other.
If you could give someone starting trading tomorrow one piece of advice, what would it be?
Keep a well-maintained trading journal. I feel like so many skip this part because they think the only thing that matters is “PNL going up or down'', but there's more to it. As Tom Dante puts it: the whole aim of a journal is to help you answer three very important questions when it comes to trading:
What goals do you set for your trading?
Like everyone else, I just want to grow my portfolio over time. I have no daily $ goals. I just try to enjoy the market with my friends on CT and Discord while waiting for opportunities to appear.
How would you describe your attitude towards risk?
Everything in life carries a risk with it. You can never reduce risk to zero, but you can control how much you expose yourself to. I always try to have the minimal amount of risk I can, unless my system tells me otherwise, which happens very rarely. It is much easier to ruin yourself in the chase of faster growth using leverage etc. You have to sit and do the maths of whether it is worth it and always try to assume risk, not take it. I focus on long-term growth and consistency, so the risk is something I try to reduce as much as I can at this point.
You can never reduce risk to zero, but you can control how much you expose yourself to.