Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Tough getting focused

I wrote last in June this year and mentioned the word FOCUS. As I look back on the last 5 months in which Lorraine has been back at work and at what I have actually achieved it does not feel like a lot.

I seem to be making a lot of mistakes

  • Invested in too many Internet Marketing programmes: the market is full of compelling offers and there are so many new ways emerging to do things. I have more gizmos than you can shake a stick at in the realms of affiliate marketing and traffic generation and niche website projects. The time has come to put the resources to full use and to make it stick. There are some successes going on here. I have outsourced my Twitter management for 3 accounts and D4USocial are doing a good job building followers for @MarkSCarrington and @Stratocharge and @Go4ForexProfits. I have started my program for building Facebook traffic - just need to follow up to complete that process. It is all a bit dependent on building the website properties. I have changed direction a little on some of those properties principally because the affiliate products did not stack up that well.  Progess is happening on (RSS feed working using Commission Hack plugin but not to my satisfaction); (focused on cycling training for endurance); (focused on cycling for health without all that endurance stuff); (a new area in a microniche arena with a view to selling my own eBook); (this will become my main affiliate marketing site)
  • Trying to do too much myself.  I have always been a technology junkie and I have been keen to learn how things work. My preferred style is to understand something by doing first before I outsource. I am also kind of waiting to earn some income before I start incurring fixed cost. Have spent a lot of effort getting rid of fixed cost and it is slowly racking up with many of the Internet services requiring ongoing costs (e.g., autoresponder; domain registrations; hosting; webinar service; Twitter service; etc)
  • FX trading continues to prove a long and slow learning process. I am learning a lot about my own trading psychology. As a trader I am not good at seeing negative numbers - I tend then to pull trades off because I doubt the strategy and/or tighten stop losses too tight. I have not really pinned down what the trading problem is though I can cast some of the blame onto my first trading coach - she confused me on the choice of strategy - and one of my teachers who confused me about selectivity in choosing trades ("if it fits the rules of the strategy take all the trades" Other coaches introduced rules of excellence). Where I am now is I have full command of too many strategies and I have not yet found a consistent model that works for me (trading strategy; trading plan; trade management are all not firmly bedded down).  So I have invested time in two different directions. 1. Outsource the trading to some good traders who earn a percentage of profits and trade my account the same way they trade theirs - still on trial but they are doing better than I am. I will learn from their trading style too. 2. Continue working to refine the trading robots I have trained. With the exception of October which was a choppy month, the robot is trading profitably each month - still work to do as one robot is making fewer and smaller winning trades it should to overcome the losing ones. Just started testing a new one - picked one of the rated ones from Clickbank - Megadroid - will post views when I have them. Also acquired FAPTurbo in the 85% off anniversary sale - (only have to recover a much smaller price to breakeven). Also will look at Milion Dollar Pips - it's a scalping robot. I kind of like training machines to do my work. BUT is is also a break in FOCUS
  • Not sure this is a mistake but I have now taken over management of my own personal portfolio. This was a longer term plan and I have just completed a 6 month coaching programme with Trading Pursuits based here in Sydney. The mistake in there was not committing the time to get the best out of the learning - I did find the weekly webinars a bit repetitive. That is probably no surprise as the markets and the media have been singing the same old song all this time. Media says: CRISIS. Market says: MOVING UP - STEADY AS SHE GOES. One good thing is Trading Pursuits did organize an extra full day event at the end of the programme which served well to bring a bunch of things together. It's been a little longer to get my portfolio finally moved across from HSBC Global Asset Management - took just under 3 months to get that moved. I am sure pleased I did the portfolio tidy up early on and could hold on while the market drifted steadily upwards and could be safe with no interventions needed. I have continued with a mentorship process with Brad McFadden of The Daily Trading Report. So far that is working well with a weekly webinar and a scheduled weekly call. Get on well with Brad as he spent several years in South Africa and understands me and is not filled with the Aussie bloke thing (he's a Kiwi). So far the market moves that we have followed are shaping the right way - not all but it is positive. Once I have that shaped up, I can focus a little more on other things.  I have learned a huge amount and feel better equipped to build an investment portfolio that is wider than a "buy and hold" thing and it is leveraged to asymmetric wins and covers a wider range of instruments. It's pretty scary what I have learned in the last 6 to 9 months. And I now know how to make my portfolio grow when the market is going down.
  • Done next to no cycling - this is a sad indictment for a blog called Cycle Tourist. We have had a really cold winter and it has been hard to get motivated to get out to ride. I guess what is happening is that I have got so busy doing other things that I do not feel that going out for a ride is justifiable. That needs to change as I have committed to ride 2 legs of Cycle Around Australia 2013 ( Have been successful on getting the web presence built and ranked. If you Google Cycle Around Australia we are on page 1. What I really like about that is our main competitor is buying Google Ads to appear above us. Still got work to do to get Cycle Tours Australia to bring us to page 1. There is not a lot of pressure to do this as the ride is filling up quite well. There is a training ride scheduled for mid-January in the Victorian Alps - I have committed to ride that and must train as it includes one big climb over Mt Hotham. Looking forward to that ride - a few mates going and Lorraine is coming along too.
  • Have not seen enough of my children this half of the year. Easy to make excuses as I did travel a bit and they have been busy with university and final year at school. Truth is it hurts as it reminds me of what has gone in the past and it just reminds me of FAILURE.
  • Have spent some time on my South African venture
It's not all bad
  • Married life goes well
  • Markets are drifting up - better than down.
  • Health is good
  • Some of my actions are producing results. Look at @MarkSCarrington and @Go4Forexprofits on Twitter to see the followers
  • My world of friends around the world grows.
With luck I will become a little more regular in the blogoshpere. The plan is to hone in on two areas:
  1. Breathe Your Dreams - a blog about all the lifestyle things that work in my life - fitness; health; cooking; natural health
  2. Stratocharge your wealth - a blog about building your wealth through passive residual income business and investment approaches.
The broad idea is to talk about the things that I have tried and used and found to be successful. With a long track record of building a successful life I hope that there are lessons that will be of use to some of my readers

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