39 Options Trading Life Lessons For Success And Profit

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In all the years I have been in options trading and coaching or educating new traders, I have come across some really key lessons which have helped me and those I’m coaching, to move forward and develop ourselves into better traders and better people.

Of course, I have compiled all of the key options trading specific lessons into my education platform where you have access to all of the modules, videos, and podcasts on all of the key subjects that you need to know to start trading options.

However, in this blog, I just wanted to pull together 39 of the key lessons I think we can all use in life and options trading. While some of them are explicitly related to options trading, others are more general life lessons. I firmly believe that the things we apply to be successful in life can also help us become more successful traders.

So here is my list of 39 essential lessons for successful options trading – let me know if you agree or feel free to add you own in the comments box.

  1. Be ethical in all of your dealings and remain a humble and respectful person
  2. If you don’t know something, educate yourself and learn about it
  3. Greed will never win out; it will catch out even the luckiest eventually
  4. Marry your best friend. (I did and couldn’t be happier!)
  5. Money in the bank is the Report Card – “Warren Buffett.”
  6. If you are passionate about something, do it yourself, you can’t outsource passion
  7. Delegate tasks to other people – it’s impossible to do everything all the time (I’m still learning this one haha)
  8. Bad things do sometimes just happen to good people
  9. Some people just can’t be helped no matter what you do. You can’t help those who don’t want your help so don’t try
  10. What you pay for is what you will receive – there are no shortcuts in life
  11. The truth isn’t slander, even if you don’t like what you hear
  12. The best competition is your own competition – keep challenging yourself
  13. Spend outside your means; you will have to work harder, make more money and become more successful
  14. Mac is 150% better than Windows. Please discuss in the comments!
  15. Complaining about people is just a waste of your time
  16. Make sure you always have a reason to do something – it will give you the drive to succeed
  17. Always have “to do” lists for everything you want to achieve. There is nothing more satisfying than crossing items out once completed
  18. Don’t try to teach other people if you don’t know how to do it yourself first
  19. Surround yourself with great and positive people who motivate and inspire you. Toxic people in your life will only drag you down
  20. If you want something from someone, do something for them first
  21. Network at events to expand your professional circle
  22. Understand that there is a time and a place to talk business and when to engage in regular conversation
  23. Good people will support you because of who you are and what you represent
  24. Look after yourself – stay healthy, eat well and exercise regularly and have a positive lifestyle as stress and bad habits impact your business performance
  25. Try to make big decisions with a rational approach, rather than an emotional heart. One of the key lessons to learn to become a successful trader – follow the math, not the emotions
  26. There is only one way to learn, and that is through action. Never stop learning
  27. Forgive, forget and move on in life. Holding grudges and focusing on the past will only create a negative mindset
  28. People who rip you off will never amount to anything. Just move on from them
  29. Build a lasting legacy based on your positive achievements and all of the good things you have achieved. Don’t be remembered for the wrong reasons
  30. Spend time with your family and don’t forget they make you who you are
  31. Nothing can hold you back from your dreams except yourself – this particularly applies to beginner traders!
  32. Don’t think that learning stops when you finish full-time education. Learning should be a life-long habit as you will never know everything
  33. Have business partners – work together and learn from each other
  34. When you do go into business with someone, have a long-term agreement. (Not there yet, but maybe soon)
  35. If something is working, keep doing it consistently and regularly – this particularly applies to your trading routine
  36. Never keep all your eggs in one basket – diversify and keep a broad spread – particularly for your portfolio
  37. Own your failures and learn from them – accepting failure and moving on creates the foundation for future success
  38. Have an exit strategy – always be working towards a goal with a plan of how to get there, and what to do next
  39. Be tenacious – if you give up at the first hurdle you are guaranteed not to succeed

I hope these 39 key lessons have resonated with you and if you even take one of them through into your life to improve your options trading success, then it will make me happy. If you want to take on board the advice about continuous learning, then why not start now by signing up as a member with Option Alpha to gain full access to our education portal. Choose from set video tracks, learning modules, and blogs on all options topics for beginners and more advanced traders.

If you want to learn through action then why not watch me make live trades, some of which were successful and some of which made a loss, but either way, you can use my experience of real options trading, to learn lessons to take forward in your trading career. In trading, as in life, we will all incur some losses at some point, the key to any success is how you react to the failure.

About The Author

Kirk Du Plessis

Kirk founded Option Alpha in early 2007 and currently serves as the Head Trader. In 2018, Option Alpha hit the Inc. 500 list at #215 as one of the fastest growing private companies in the US. Formerly an Investment Banker in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group for Deutsche Bank in New York and REIT Analyst for BB&T Capital Markets in Washington D.C., he's a Full-time Options Trader and Real Estate Investor. He's been interviewed on dozens of investing websites/podcasts and he's been seen in Barron’s Magazine, SmartMoney, and various other financial publications. Kirk currently lives in Pennsylvania (USA) with his beautiful wife and three children.