Solutions. Problems are easy to find and focus on, but solutions…. that is where the real magic happens. The issue with solutions is sometimes they are not pleasant or want to admit needs to be focused on. However, as you’re about to see with our guest in this episode, if you just suck it up and do what needs to be done, the results can increase your pathway to success that much quicker. I welcome back longtime member Tony (chatroom alias ‘TWDT’) and while we do talk about his trading journey, we also talk extensively about how he decided to focus on other “things” that while are not the most exciting, they are extremely beneficial within all walks of life. This is one of those interviews where it may seem “off topic” on the surface, but for many of you (if you’re honest with yourself), I have a sneaky suspicion it may be the exact solution you should be throwing all your energy behind (for the time being). Let’s get to it!
Clay: This is The Stock Trading Reality Podcast, episode 246.
Announcer: This is The Stock Trading Reality Podcast, where you get to see the realistic side of a trader’s journey. Get inspired and stay motivated by everyday, normal people, who are currently on their journey to trading success. And this is your host, he wants you to realize how savage, yet fair, the markets are, Clay Trader.
Clay: It really is cutthroat, barbaric. And I just picture it as vikings swinging around axes. It can be a very, very brutal place. And if you show up, I have a pretty good understanding of it, you’re going to get slaughtered. You know what, I’m very good here, here, and there, except anything after the word except, you’re going to get slaughtered. This is not a video game. This is not a situation where … It’s not a bank CD. It’s not a savings account. It’s not a checking account where you always read the disclaimers. This is FDIC insured. No, there is no insurance. If you lose your money, it’s gone. It’s not a video game. If you lose your money, there’s no reset button. It’s gone. There’s nobody you can call up. It is just gone. And when I say it’s gone, it is gone because somebody else took your money from you. Somebody else had a better plan. Somebody else had a better understanding.
Clay: So when you show up with the attitude of, you know, I think I know what I’m doing, let’s see what happens, okay. Well, I’m not saying you can’t get lucky. I’m not saying you can’t have some fool’s gold, but over the long haul, this is where the brightest people come out to play. This is where the most money is dumped into things in terms of algorithms and just this is Wall Street. Right? Wall Street, big money. If there is ever a correlation between big money and someplace in the world, it is the financial markets. And it is a brutal, brutal place. But you know what, it’s totally fair because you get to decide how you’re going to show up. You get to decide how you’re going to approach all this. And if you decide, you know what, I watched a few YouTube videos, listened to a couple podcasts, I have a pretty good understanding. Let’s see what happens.
Clay: Let me offer up a spoiler for you. What’s going to happen is if the market’s kind to you, the market’s just going to take your money right away. If the market’s cruel to you, the market’s going to give you money, give you money, and then all of a sudden, give you false confidence known as fool’s gold. You will deposit more money and then the market will steal it all and take it all from you. So really, best case is you just lose it all from the get go because I get sick and tired and it’s depressing and sad when I hear the fool’s gold stories, where people, I got started in the market. I was seeing great success. And then, the then part is always something that’s just not pleasant to read about. I mean, I don’t like to hear people losing money, especially again, to bring this full circle, there is no reset button. None of this is FDIC insured. When it’s gone, it’s gone.
Clay: So yes, the markets are savage. The markets are brutal. It is one big viking fight, axes swinging everywhere. But as brutal and as savage as the markets can be, it is 100% fair because you get to choose, you get to decide how you’re going to go about all of this. And the choice is up to you. Nobody is forcing anybody to come into the markets unprepared. That’s your choice. And when those people just get slaughtered, and when those people lose all their money and get their money taken from them, I’m sorry, I don’t feel bad for those people. They chose to come in under prepared. They chose to come in and either viewing this place or using this place like a casino. And the people that actually know it’s not a casino and know how to go about all this, well, the benefited from it. And that’s just the way it is.
Clay: So today’s guest, which is a nice little segue here, because our guest, Tony, long time member. In the chat room, he goes just under the alias TWDT. But he was in the markets, and he started to make some realizations, and he decided to go down a couple different pathways. And I mentioned this early on in the interview, but I want to mention it real quick. I found this very unique because Tony really inspires me. He really motivates me. And it’s a circumstance where maybe Tony’s story, I’m not going to say everything to the exact detail, but maybe in some broad strokes, maybe Tony’s story might be the solution to where you sit right now.
Clay: Maybe there’s some things in there that he decided to do, that he decided to work on, and that he decided to focus on, that if you did the same thing, maybe that would make a huge difference in your current journey. And I don’t want to offer up any spoilers, but that’s kind of the overarching kind of theme and thought process that I want you to have. Yeah, we talk trading, so don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to say that there’s no trading talk. But there is also a big chunk where we talk about some other things, but those “other things,” that may be just what the doctor ordered in terms of what would maybe turn around your personal situation. So I don’t want to offer up any more spoilers or anything like that. But keep those thoughts in mind, and let’s get to it with Tony. Tony, welcome to the show.
Tony: Hey, Clay. How’s it going?
Clay: Good. Well, I should say, “Back to the show.” Do you happen to remember what episode you were on off the top of your head? I was slacking off on my research.
Tony: I don’t. I just remember a timeframe. It was January of 2018.
Clay: Okay. And now it is, wow, this thing has been around a while. And it’s been a while since you’ve been on the show. And I also know I should give full disclosure to listeners. I will be playing dumb here a little bit because I know quite a bit about Tony. But some things, I’m not quite sure of. And I think we’re going to have a good little discussion here. So I guess why don’t we just start back at the … I’ll let the cat out of the bag. You haven’t been very active, or you haven’t necessarily been trading with real money for a while.
Clay: But there is reasonings and such behind this, which is what I kind of want to focus more on because for listeners out there, maybe the solution to your situation might be with something what Tony did. Maybe that is the best solution. So just keep that in the back of your mind as we go here. But as of the last, to the best of your ability, because I get it’s been over a year, but do you remember where you left off in terms of your trading journey when we last spoke?
Tony: Yeah, actually, I was diving into it. I had allocated some funds into my brokerage. And I was starting to dabble into options and more so like swing trading because I do have a day job, so it’s difficult for me to do day trading or those lower timeframes. I have to set most of my trades up ahead of time, so that’s kind of where I was at when we were last talking.
Clay: Okay. All right. Perfect. And I guess after that point, because like I said, I know that you stopped trading. But after that interview, how much longer did you actually continue to trade? And I’m assuming it was still the options and stuff like that. So I guess kind of fill in the gap between when we last spoke, and then when you just stopped trading, if you kind of want to just go about why you eventually decided to just kind of remove yourself from at least using real money in the markets. Because from my understanding, it’s not like you just totally walked away from the market in its entirety. You just decided to hit the pause button using real money. So kind of fill in that time gap.
Tony: Okay. So after the last podcast, I was trading for a little while. I was dabbling with options. Had some moderate success. I had a couple, well, I had one major failure at it, and it was completely all my fault. And I misunderstood some of the aspects of options like the theta, per se. And I took a look at it, and I realized that with options, it was hard for me to do that because I couldn’t set up the automatic sell orders with my brokerage. So I had to kind of continue to monitor it. And with my job, I just really couldn’t do that. So then I stepped away from options because I just don’t have the time for it. And I started focusing again on my swing trading.
Tony: With that, again, I had some moderate success because I followed the plan. I know how to make a plan and trade the plan and execute the plan. Obviously, not every time does it go in your favor, but I would say my success rate was, I don’t know, maybe 30%, 40%. It wasn’t every trade, but even the losses weren’t really that big of a to do because of course, when you have a plan, it’s not a big deal.
Clay: And honestly, if I can interject, don’t get me wrong, win rates matter. And I do care about win rates. But in some ways, it’s like, okay, I really don’t care about the win rate because: How about the times where you were wrong? How did that turn out? But from the way you described, it sounds like you were wrong quite a bit if your win rate was only 30% or so. But it also sounds like, I mean, you had your losses pretty well under control.
Tony: Yeah, because I of course, I used stop loss. And I knew what my risk was. And maybe I was still trying to dabble in different types of strategies to find the one that worked for me, or that I could identify with the best. In this case, I was going between panic buys, spec buys, and seeing if I can insert momentum buys into my trade plan. I did volcano trading. I’ve never got into shorting, but that’s soon. I imagine that’s going to be on the horizon here. So when I would lose, it really wasn’t a huge dumpster fire. It was a managed loss. And I can’t even say the dollar value because it really, the risk was minor compared to the reward.
Tony: I used the RVR trading, and so whenever I did take a loss, again, it was a big loss. It was a minor mitigated loss. And when I did win, it usually erased most of those losses anyway. So my brokerage was just continuing to climb, even though I had many not successful trades, put it that way. So anyway, but the point about a lot of that was at some point, I still wasn’t using a lot of money because I had started to fund my brokerage, and I was trying to figure out a plan with that and how to do it. And I just couldn’t, well, I couldn’t find the money to fund it the way that I wanted to fund it. I wanted to have more in there to use, so that way I can start increasing [crosstalk 00:10:44].
Clay: You wanted to scale, begin to scale up. Right?
Tony: Exactly, because again, even though I was having these failures, my percentages were still good, and I wanted to reap the rewards of those percentages, as far as when I would get a win, my, I guess with my risk, I would go up 10%, 15%, or more, depending on the trade. And that I find success in, and my losses were so minor that the 10%, 15% was good. So when I wanted to put more money into that, and I realized that I just didn’t have it. And I had to think about that. I had to take a look at that. So that thought process is what kind of led me to stop trading because I couldn’t fund it the way that I wanted and scale it up the way that I wanted.
Clay: So I’m just playing devil’s advocate here. So what happens to the person that says, “Yeah, Tony. But you were building good habits, so just keep on with the good habits, and just let the money come to you,” because I’m sure you had that discussion with yourself in your head. So I mean, how did you go about that little discussion?
Tony: Well, and I did. I was still building good habits. But I guess it went back to I didn’t have a plan with my personal finances. And that’s where everything kind of shifted gears for me because I left some of the money in there, and I did continue a little bit. But once I got … You have another course out there called SLAB, once I started diving into SLAB, I realized that I just need to kind of focus on this first. And even though I was getting some success on here, I needed to have more guarantees with my personal finances and putting it up for risk at the moment. So I basically just stopped trading, and withdrew all my money out of my brokerage to focus on my personal finances, so that way I could eventually fund it the way that I wanted to.
Clay: Okay. I feel guilty, listeners. I may or may not have manipulated that question because I may or may not have known the answer to that. But I think probably a lot of people are wondering the same thing. And you know what, sometimes that just happens. You locate other areas of your life, in Tony’s case, his personal finances that he decided, you know what, in the overarching of things … And I like the way you said guarantee. What did you say? Guaranteed returns, or how did you use that?
Tony: Well, just more like I would say [crosstalk 00:13:16].
Clay: Because I agree with you, but that’s something that I think some people maybe that light bulb hasn’t gone off because I full agree with your approach, but I can’t remember the exact verbiage used. But yeah, going to that, what do you mean by whenever you hear the word guarantee, but I do agree. In the realm you were talking about, it is guaranteed.
Tony: Right. I needed to be able to redo my personal finances to a point where I can use guaranteed money instead of the stock market because the stock market, there is no guarantees. And you’ve heard my success rate, so I couldn’t … I can use that money, but I couldn’t identify a value that would be guaranteed as part of my income at this point. So when I use the word guarantee, I was looking at more my paycheck and the money that I know, no matter what, is always going to be the same.
Clay: And I would assume that you know that if you choose to put your money from your paycheck towards, let’s just say a debt for example, then that is a guaranteed good use of the money because you’re not losing any money by putting your money towards debt. You’re actually increasing the amount of money you have because the less that you have, the more personal money, or more cash flow you have. So is that kind of how you also looked at the word guarantee, as you know what, let me put this money towards something that’s for sure going to give me a benefit?
Tony: Absolutely. And paying off debt was definitely a benefit. And when I was continuing to-
Clay: Well, it’s a guaranteed benefit.
Clay: I think that’s a powerful word because it is. That is one way that there is guarantees out there, and it ain’t the stock market. That’s one of them. But in Tony’s case, yeah, you know what, if I pay off that debt, that’s guaranteed that money’s going toward reducing the debt. And once again, reduced debt means less debt payments you have to make, and less debt payments you have to make, oh, look. Now I have more money at the end of every month. And then in the bigger picture, I’m assuming, Tony, in the back of your mind you’re like, “Well, in the bigger picture, because I have less debt payments, and then I’m going to have more money at the end of each month, now I’m going to be able to fund my trading account that much quicker.” Is that kind of a roundabout thought process you experienced?
Tony: Absolutely. Just like compounding interest. It’s the more money I have from releasing all my debt, the more I’m going to be able to fund it the way that I want, the more I can continue on with a plan for my personal finances. So the more I got into it, I think the more, the better habits that I formed with my personal goals and debt, then in the meantime with all that, I’ve eliminated all of my debt except for my mortgage. And I am at the … I’m trying to think of the word, precipice perhaps, of being able to start really getting into trading again. I have done a little bit because part of my plan, I did allocate some money to fund my brokerage, so that way I can continue on building habits with, well, not with the amount of money that I want to be using. But it’s still, there’s enough there to continue on practicing strategies and fine tuning that.
Clay: Right. And I would assume … Well, that’s up to you because I realize it’s your life. But are you willing to share just what kind of debt numbers were you looking at? Because maybe there’s somebody in your shoes saying, “Yeah, but my debt is just so overwhelming.” Like I said, if you want to give ballpark numbers, or don’t want to give numbers at all, I totally realize I’m prying here. But I’ll let you take it from here then.
Tony: Oh, I have no problem sharing that. If it can help somebody, I will be more than revealing with those numbers. I had approximately about $6000 to $7000 in credit card debt, about $11,000 for a car payment. I also have a mortgage that I recently bought a house about three years ago, so I’ve hardly even damaged that debt yet. But that’s all there, even though it’s one of those appreciating debts, but still, it’s still there. It’s money that’s outgoing from my income. And that was pretty much it. It wasn’t major debt. I mean, some people would see that as major debt. I know a lot of people that have much worse off than me.
Tony: But the problem was I wasn’t making any headway with it. I was always making the minimum payments with my credit card. I was making the minimum payments with my car payment. And I wasn’t getting ahead. I was a little bit, but because you’re getting those credit card interest every month on the balance, and I wasn’t paying it down fast. And I never really looked at that until taking the SLAB Money Method course. And I was continuing to slowly pay off my debt, give these credit card companies my money, and not be able to find money for myself and my family.
Clay: And that’s exactly it. I mean, what you could’ve been using for your account, you just kept giving to the banks and the credit card companies and all that sort of stuff. But when you don’t have to give it to them, you can give it to whatever you want, including your trading account. I love though how … And I mean this in a complimentary way, but you sounded, I think to a lot of people, pretty weird, pretty psychotic, when you’re like, “I’m debt free, but I still have that mortgage, and that’s money still … ” I mean, most people don’t even think, well, yeah, a mortgage, that’s 100% normal. And to your point, it’s not like a mortgage is necessarily holding you back in the sense of … Because at least that’s tied to a piece of dirt that over time historically appreciates in value, which is good. But it’s funny to listen to somebody talk about that stuff like you.
Clay: But yeah, that’s still money coming out of my paycheck every, or out of my monthly budget every month. So I like to hear that even your mortgage is almost rubbing you the wrong way, and you’d like to kick that thing to the curb. That’s definitely good stuff.
Tony: Yeah. That’s next on my list. I mean, that’s all part of the plan. I’m getting there.
Tony: I’ve eliminated all the debt, and now I’m building up that, I won’t give away too much, but building up that fortress to where I can stop putting that money in that, and I can start allocating it towards house payment, retirement, and brokerage. So that is my goal here that’s going to I believe take place within the next five or six months.
Clay: Nice. And isn’t it amazing how once you got that debt out of the picture? I’m assuming you’ve noticed how much more money just seems to be laying around at the end of every month. Is that something that you kind of stumbled upon, and you’re just like, “Oh, wow. Where’d that money … Oh, wow. Where’d that money come from?” I mean, have you noticed that after you’ve kicked your debt to the curb that you just seem to have more money now?
Tony: Oh, of course. That’s always the American dream is to be able to have money to do the things that you want to do. And I just never could figure out why I didn’t have any. But now it’s like, hey, if we want to go do something, or I want to take my daughter to the movies or something, it’s, hey, no problem. Let’s go. Let’s go enjoy ourselves. My finances are no longer a crutch to me. And so yeah, every month I know exactly how much I have leftover. I know exactly where it’s going to go and what to do with it. And I find that it’s a huge relief to me that this is now here. And why haven’t I done this sooner? That’s really what I keep asking myself every now and again, because I would’ve eliminated a lot of problems in my life being debt free.
Clay: You’re absolutely right. And that was a great quote. Why didn’t I do this sooner? I again, talk to you, listener, I don’t know. Maybe is this the solution? If you’re struggling, if you’re just not quite getting it, if you feel overwhelmed, maybe it has nothing to do with you as a trader, but maybe you just have this underlying stress and voice in the back of your head, where you just need to do this stuff right now. In Tony’s case, he’ll be coming back to trading, and coming back to trading with a whole lot more money, and money constantly coming in. So nobody is saying that you can never do this stuff, or come back to it. But I don’t know. Why not? Maybe you’re going to be saying the same thing as Tony. Oh, man. I should’ve just started this stuff sooner. And that could be a big changer for you. Now I want to … How long did it actually all take? If I’m remembering, didn’t it take just under a year, maybe a little bit more?
Tony: Yeah, just about, because I think I started in … Yeah. It was exactly a year because I started around May of 2018. And I think it was either May or June this year when I made that very last car payment, and it was fantastic.
Clay: Last payments are fantastic, yes.
Tony: Yeah, with a plan, it really doesn’t take that long, as long as you make a plan and do it. And it’s the same with trading. If you have a plan, it’s fairly simple.
Clay: It’s amazing how plans kind of trickle down to all areas of life, no matter what you’re doing. The power of actually having a plan. I’m trying to think of the quote, this may or may not be right. But I think it’s Warren Buffett. And idiot with a plan can beat a genius without a plan, or something like that. But there’s definitely something to that when you just actually know what you’re doing and know why you’re doing it. And things just seem to … What I’ve always discovered is the more you plan and the more you kind of have a system and an approach to something, the more lucky you seem to get. That might just be me, but it just seems like, oh, what a lucky event. In all actuality, no, you’re just creating your own luck because it’s easier to create luck for yourself when you’re not wondering where your money went, and you have more money leftover at the end of every month. So that took right around a year. And then I want to press into the health stuff here because-
Tony: There you go.
Clay: I mean, well, first off, things still going well in that regard?
Tony: Oh, yeah. I mean, that was the other aspect of things is finding it improved my finances when I started focusing more on my health.
Clay: So sorry to cut you off. But from a timeline perspective, because this is all blurry for me a little bit, that’s right. Now that I think about it, because when we communicated. But you did start. So for the listeners out there, I also offer maintainthegains.com, which is a health bootcamp thing that I offer. But you did start that while you were still knocking out the debt. Right?
Clay: Now that I think about it. Okay. So I guess, yeah, walk us through that because that is a good thought process in terms of, you know what, maybe if I get even healthier, I’ll get that much more efficient in terms of the money management and personal finances. So yeah, I guess I’ll let you pick it up and walk us through that because I think this makes a big difference, or could make a big difference for a lot of people.
Tony: So yeah, when that first came out, I think I was in the first grouping of that. And even when that came out, I took a look at it. And not that it was a huge amount of money or anything, but again, I looked at that. I was like, “Hey. Do I have the money to afford this? Can I invest in this?” Because one of the aspects of my finances that I kept trying to work on more than anything is how often I go out to eat. And even though I still had budgets for things, as a single parent, a lot of times I go for that quick fix meal, which means that we’re going to a restaurant, or I’m stopping at the store to grab a quick thing. And my health was, well, wasn’t the greatest. I think I got to about 302 pounds. I was like, “Oh, my God. This is not good.”
Tony: And I knew that if I kept that up, that eventually it’s just going to kill me being severely overweight. And I don’t want that. And I also want to be healthy for my daughter. And it’s just something I’ve been struggling with for so long. But when I look at it in the financial sense, it’s okay, so if I can find a way to eliminate all these going outs, and doing something better for myself, that’s going to just help my bottom line even more. So when the thought came up as: Hey, can I afford this maintain the gains? The question really was: Can I afford not to do it. And the answer’s no. I can’t afford not to do that. And I wanted to try something different. And not knowing the outcome of what really was in there, I knew that I had to do something. And if I can get healthier and not have any of these future doctor bills, and not go out to eat all the time, that it’s just going to help me pay off the debt even quicker.
Clay: You’re absolutely right. I’m curious on this because … So a little bit more context for listeners. I went through a stage where … And in fact, I mean, maybe depending on what YouTube videos you’ve watched of mine, if you’ve watched some of my older ones, and then you watch some of the newer ones, you may have the thought, “Is this the same guy? What’s going on here?” And it is the same guy. But I went through this stage where, yeah, just life got hectic. Things got hectic, and I started to expand in the horizontal direction, which is not the preferable direction to be expanding as a human being. And then eventually, long story short, I changed some things up. And I tried and failed a bunch of times, and finally got something that worked for me. And I’ve always had people ask, “Hey, Clay. I noticed you on YouTube. You changed a whole lot. What did you do?”
Clay: And enough people finally asked that where I was like, “All right. Fine. I’ll just create a little course/bootcamp/whatever you want to call it,” and if people want to kind of go through the strategy that I used that finally worked for me, then they can do that. So that’s what Tony’s referring to. But back to the point. For me, I remember when I got kind of, like I said, expanded horizontally, my mind just seemed to be just fuzzy and sloggy. I don’t even think sloggy is a real word, but sluggish. There we go. That’s probably a better word.
Clay: It seemed like, I don’t know, compared to now, I mean, I can see clearly. I can stay focused. I can just hustle and get stuff done that much quicker. Not that I couldn’t get stuff done previously, but just the efficiency aspect. It seems like I got a well oiled machine. Did you kind of notice that coming from where you were to where you are right now as far as just your mental capabilities?
Tony: Oh, heck yeah, mental and physical. I would get up and do certain things, and now I have the energy, and my mind is clear. I can get good sleep. I can think. I can process stuff. Everything got better once I got healthier.
Clay: And when you get sleep, I’m assuming you just … I’m not assuming. I know you get more stuff done. And the more stuff you get done, everything gets picked back up and it’s kind of like a snowball that rolls downhill in your favor in terms of momentum. So I mean, I guess going into it, were you scared? Were you hesitant? Well, I mean, I know you jumped in with both feet. But I mean, what was your mental … Because again, I’m thinking about the person in the car. And they’re listening to this, or on doing whatever. And maybe they’re thinking, “You know what, maybe that’s what’s kind of holding me back. Maybe that’s why I’m not quite getting to where I want to be, because I am unhealthy. And I just need to look in the mirror and say, ‘Yeah. Things have gotten out of control,'” To which Tony and I would both say, “Hey, welcome to the club.”
Clay: You’ve taken the first step in just admitting that to yourself. Sometimes that’s the most important step to take. But I can also see you sitting there listening to this saying, “But,” and then you’re filling in the blank with some sort of but. So I guess, Tony, did you have any sort of buts, or hesitations? And if so, how did you come over those, overcome those?
Tony: Yeah. I had a lot. First, being skeptical about, okay, here’s another plan. There’s something else that somebody’s trying to sell. But granted, with the things that you put out there from my experience, I know that there’s at least a little bit of history there, where I know things work, and I like your thought process on stuff. But at the time, it was like, “I don’t know if I want to do this. This is just going to be a waste because nothing ever works. I’ve tried this. I’ve tried that. What can this possibly be that can be any different than anything else that I’ve tried?” I don’t know if the feeling was really fear, but the one thing that I have that I don’t know about anyone else is, I have a very hard time spending money to invest in myself.
Tony: I find it very difficult. I don’t know why that is, but that’s a big reason in why my finances get out of order, why when I first started trading as a newcomer into the market, I was losing all my money, because I would not invest in myself to learn or to do anything different. I always think that I can do it on my own. And maybe it’s a stubbornness in me. And I had to overcome that by just simply accepting the fact that, listen, hey, if you always do what you’ve always done, you’re always going to get what you always got. And this was something different, and I wanted to try it because I like that everything else that I’ve taken of your courses have been successful. Why wouldn’t this be successful? Of course, it’s going to be.
Tony: And any plans that are out there, if you’re just willing to do it like it’s designed, you’re going to find results, whatever it is. And once I told myself that, it really was a simple decision that, you know what, I’m just going to do this and just follow along because I saw the Clay Trader the Hut.
Clay: Clay Trader the Hut, my kids are going to love that. They just got into Star Wars. Oh man, so they would actually get that reference. That’s fantastic. Well played, sir.
Tony: Yes. So I saw those videos, but I see that as myself too because as I said, I got to about 302 pounds. And that’s ridiculous, nobody should be that. And so I completely lost my thought process with that. But I decided I needed to dive right in and get to it and not make excuses because that’s the one thing that always holds me back, is me making excuses on myself on why I can’t do something.
Clay: That’s good stuff. And I do fully get it though. I will say this. When I was doing my research and putting things together, I mean, let’s just call it the way it is, the financial industries, trading, day trading, whatever you want to call it, cryptocurrency space, it is a sketchy, sketchy, sketchy business. There’s no doubt about it. I mean, that’s why I have no offense if somebody just is introduced to me. And they’re like, “Yeah. That person’s a scum bag.” I get it. I understand why you would default to that. I’m not offended that you’re super skeptical. In fact, that’s probably good you’re skeptical because yeah, this is such a shady business.
Clay: But you go into the fitness industry, woo, and it makes this whole financial market seem like rainbows and butterflies and sweet little old ladies crossing the street. There is so much stuff out there when you just actually understand what needs to happen compared to what is taught. I mean, I get it why it’s taught certain ways because, hey, you can get all these results super fast. And if you do the plan, that’s true, you’re going to get results super fast. But as far as actually staying on the plan, well, that might not be very realistic because you’re going to drive yourself absolutely insane. But from their point of view, they don’t care because they can now throw it on their website. Hey, look at these results that happened in two weeks or 30 days. And then that’s all they care about. And then it’s just a never ending cycle of bringing in new people that want those quick results.
Clay: But nobody can refute the fact that, sure, you can get those quick results. But how about maintaining those results? Hence the maintain the gains that you make, which is my philosophy on things. But yeah, I get, Tony, where you’re totally coming from and [inaudible 00:32:57]. Another weight loss, or another get in shape, or another health type of a product, here we go. But I’m glad you still took that leap of faith and decided to give it a try. So I mean, you started off at three, what did you say? You were 302, 306.
Tony: Yeah. I think by the time I took this, I was down to my average was 292, so that’s when I started was 292.
Clay: And as you know, but we’ll just leave it [inaudible 00:33:24], weight doesn’t really … To a point, at the beginning yes, weight does matter. But then it becomes very much so less and less relevant as time goes by. We won’t go down the body composition rabbit hole since this is not necessarily a health and fitness podcast. But where do you stand right now as far as your weight is concerned?
Tony: Well, my weight is, I’m down to 247. I’ve been kind of lingering around that area for a while. But I’m down about seven or eight inches across my waist, which is really kind of what I go at.
Clay: Yes. That’s massive, man.
Tony: Yeah. And weight does matter at the moment for one reason, is that it goes back to the finances. Once I get to a certain weight, I get a huge discount on my life insurance. So I’m still, I’m looking at it as, hey, I get to this certain point, that’s more money in the bank. You know?
Clay: Nice. What weight is that?
Tony: It’s 223.
Clay: Okay. So I mean, you’re within striking distance for sure. And but the waist thing, even that, I don’t like how insurance companies are basing things off weight. It should be off of: What size jeans are you wearing? What’s your circumference? But it is what it is.
Tony: It’s ridiculous. Right now I’m still, I’m about two or three inches away from needing, well, from buying new clothes because I can’t do it now because if I do it now, I’m going to be buying more clothes again so quickly. And it’s like some of the stuff is just too big on me. But again, so that goes back to the whole finance thing, is I’m already budgeting for that stuff. You know?
Clay: Yeah. But I fully agree. It’s like, all right, I have a choice here. I can look a little bit awkward in my clothes, or I can go buy clothes. But I know that these clothes are going to become obsolete here in the next few months, which means I have to go out and not only spend my time shopping again, but also spend money again for the sake of just not looking awkward. You know what, I’m going to look awkward.
Tony: That’s exactly what I did.
Clay: If you look a little bit goofy, yeah. Everyone’s like, “Oh, you look goofy,” just take your shirt off and start flexing at them or something.
Tony: Yeah. Right. Say, “Hey, if you want to buy me clothes, have at it, man.” I’ll take their handout, no problem.
Clay: Yeah, but that’s funny. A good problem to have though.
Tony: I’m okay with it.
Clay: If that’s what you’re facing, oh, man these clothes don’t fit because I keep getting healthier and healthier, I think that’s … I feel like if somebody learned that, they’d be like, “Oh, yeah. That makes perfect sense. And they’re going about it all the right way.” So your goal weight is right around 223 ish then?
Tony: Yeah, for my finances. Other than that, I don’t even have a goal weight. I’m just going after it and just enjoying not really thinking about it anymore. Because back when I first … Before I started, I was obsessed over thinking, “How can I not lose weight? Can I not lose weight? Lose weight, lose weight, lose weight.” I just now it doesn’t even cross my mind except every now and again. Hey, am I closer to being able to get more money? And that’s it. And I also got, there’s a bunch of apps that you can get if you have an I Watch that they pay you to occasionally track this stuff and to lose weight. So I’m also capitalizing on that too. Hey, give me more money. I’ll take it. More, more, more, more. You know what that’s like, right, Clay?
Clay: No, I don’t. I’m going to ask. What is going on here? An I Watch. I can see some people’s ears perking up because mine perked up just out of curiosity. So go down deeper in this rabbit hole. The I Watch paid, you get paid.
Tony: Yeah, yeah. Well, what I was getting at is you know what it’s like to want more, more, more, more. And so yeah, there’s a couple apps out there that depending on who your life insurance is. Mine is Aetna. Aetna, they will even give you a watch for free. And as long as you stay connected-
Clay: An I Watch you’ll get for free?
Tony: An I Watch.
Clay: Oh, wow.
Tony: Yeah. Well, you can get it for free as long as you earn it. And you earn it by tracking your fitness. And since I’m doing fitness anyway, I went out and bought at I Watch, so that way what I can do instead of getting a free I Watch, is they’ll continue to give me payments to keep staying healthy and to keep hitting certain goals, so I think it’s every 25,000 points you get, you get a $25 gift card, or Visa gift card, that for me is just more money in the bank. And then I found another app that does the same thing, except it’s every 10,000 points, you get a $10 or $15 Visa gift card. So I’m doing this stuff anyway, and I’m going to take the free money. Give it to me, I’ll take it. Pay me.
Clay: What I find ironic, and this part I will say was not scripted, but we had a little discussion about it’s amazing how when you have a plan, and how you start just doing stuff, how you just seem to start to get lucky. And I can see on the surface you’re just saying, “Yeah. I got this I Watch for free,” and people are like, “Wait. What do you mean?” Tony, he just gets ahead because people just give him free stuff. No, no, no, no, no. How did he get the free stuff? This is exactly what I mean by it’s amazing how you just all of a sudden start to get lucky, and all of a sudden, Tommy … Tommy. What am I talking about? Tony, Tony lucked himself into an I Watch. And not only is it an I Watch that he has, he gets paid for all this stuff. What a lucky guy.
Clay: Actually, no, not lucky. It’s because he has a plan and he’s doing stuff that he should be doing. And that saves the healthcare companies money. And because he saves the healthcare companies money, I mean, there’s a middle ground there. It’s a win-win for both parties. And I find that just perfect, perfect example about how when you just go out there and start to do something, do something with some health.
Tony: It’s like a dividend on your health.
Clay: Yeah, exactly. That’s a great way to put it, a dividend on your health. But if you just do something, and as long as this “something” has a quality plan behind it, then there you go. I promise you, I promise you, you will be amazed at how lucky all of a sudden you start to get with just random stuff that comes around. And I love it, man. An I Watch, and not only did you get the I Watch, you get paid for having this I Watch that was given to you. That is some good stuff.
Tony: Well, kind of back up. I might’ve mis-spoke. I could’ve chosen to get the I Watch for free by earning it with the points, or I buy the I Watch, which is what I chose to do, that way they can pay me cash instead.
Clay: Right. So but I mean you’re getting a return. I mean, at the end of the day, it’s free though. Right?
Clay: It’s going to turn out to be free.
Tony: It will be. It’ll be earning me money just having it on my wrist.
Clay: Exactly. So yeah, I mean, really it’s an appreciating asset that you invested in. So that I Watch is kind of like a little stock on your hand. And that stock, like you said, is paying you that dividend. And as long as you stay healthy, which you’re totally on board with, I mean, that’s some good stuff. Before I forget, are you doing the weight lifting and all that sort of stuff still?
Tony: I am doing everything on that plan as originally designed. I have a few more setbacks here and there because every now and again, I treat myself a little extra. But again, the whole plan is sustainable. And I’ve maintained everything, and it’s yeah, I’m doing everything. I still do not, and I will stress this, I do not, I despise, and I hate working out. I don’t like it. But this whole system that’s been set up is designed for a lazy person like myself. And I can easily do these workouts, and it’s not that big of a to do anymore, like the overwhelming sense of, hey, I’m going to go pay this gym a monthly fee and look at all this stuff, and not know how to use it. And then eventually, just quit going to the gym while still paying them the membership fee. I’ve done that multiple times in my life. I just don’t want to do that anymore. So yeah, it’s so simple that, yeah, even a lazy person like me can do it and find at least some sort of benefit from it, even though I don’t like it.
Clay: Yeah. And I’m also lazy, which is why there’s … If you’re lazy and you don’t like to work out, there’s ways that you can approach everything that … So how long do your workouts take you?
Tony: 30 minutes.
Clay: Right around, I’m guessing 30. I was going to say 40 ish, 30.
Tony: Yeah. It’s 30 minutes. I got it down to a system at this point, so yeah, it’s 30 minutes out of my day. And it’s not an overwhelming 30 minutes. Yeah, weightlifting can be hard, but it’s not nothing that’s overwhelming.
Clay: What’s a lot harder is not being able to get up the stair steps as you chase your kid, for example. And then you’re out of breath. I mean, that’s much harder. I assure you if you don’t have any kids, that’s probably not the best example. But if you do have kids and you have that, I mean, it is well worth it. So I mean, your cardio everything, it’s staying strong and you’re able to get out there and play with your daughter, and you’re not sitting there after 60 seconds being out of gas or anything.
Tony: Oh, yeah. It’s great. I mean, the cardio, it all depends on the weeks. Sometimes I get kind of sidetracked. The majority of the weeks, I am doing the cardio as you had laid out in the plan.
Tony: Sometimes I miss a day, but I continue on doing something else, whether if it’s not going to be the cardio, I make sure that I’m doing something. Yeah, but having the energy to play with my kid has been huge. That was so depressing when she’d be like, “Dad, can we go out and play?” And I’m just sitting there on the couch going, “Ugh, give me a pizza.” And I’d just not have an answer for her because I’m just so tired from just without having any energy to do just anything, and just the sadness on her face was so, I’ve got to do something. So now it’s like, “Hey, Dad. Let’s go play.” Hey, let’s go. Let’s go play.
Clay: And now your daughter’s saying, “All right, Dad, I’m tired. I want to be done.” That’s always my goal is I want the kids to be like, “All right. Yeah, I’m good enough. I’m tired.” And I’m like, “Yeah. That’s right. I still got you.”
Tony: You don’t want more of this? Come on. Let’s go.
Clay: Exactly. Exactly. Well, that’s awesome stuff. And so finances in order, debt free, health in a very big down trend. And this is one of those situations where you want your … Well, your health is in an uptrend, but your body composition and weight and all that stuff is in a down trend, which is fantastic. And that kind of brings us full circle now to at what point … I guess, no. I wanted to ask you this also. So during all of this though, during the personal finance stuff, during the health stuff, you were still staying involved in the market. So walk listeners through kind of how you kept yourself in the market in the framework of, there might be somebody listening that’s saying, “Oh, great. So I’ve got to do personal finances and maybe health. But I like the market. I want to stay involved.” So walk those people through kind of the things that you did that still kept your mind activated and in tune with everything.
Tony: Well, so after I got out completely, so one thing that I did and I continue to do to this day is you offer a weekly webinar. And I knew that getting back into the market was something that I’m going to do. It was just a matter of time. And I wanted to stay fresh, or at least I wanted to keep sharpening that pencil and working on the strategies, and at least being somewhat part of the inner circle community. And that’s how I did it, every week I would continue to go to your webinars. I would chime in and hold myself accountable to the trade plans or whatever the topic of discussion is.
Tony: I eventually did add a little bit of money into my brokerage to practice some of those plans, but it’s a small amount just to kind of, again, keep focusing on the strategies and building those habits on how to trade, how to look at a chart, how to read it, how to make a plan in a quick moment, and not just go at a trade without any sort of idea on how you’re going to trade it. Because now you can bring up a random chart, and I can come up with kind of a plan on how I would attack it because I continued to work out that muscle in my mind on trading.
Clay: Now how much did you put in your account? Because maybe [inaudible 00:45:51], wow, all right. So this person’s actually still going. What size amount of money is this that you have in your account?
Tony: I have $500 in my account.
Clay: Okay. So there we go. For someone that’s … Tony’s not sitting here saying, “With $500, I’m shopping for my Rolls Royce this weekend.” That’s not what he’s getting at. But it’s keeping you engaged. And what broker are you using?
Tony: Right now I’m using Fidelity because I do swing trading, so I don’t really have time during the day to kind of watch it. I do a little bit, so they have a really good format to do your conditional orders, and that’s kind of all that I’ve been doing lately. And I like their setup. And it’s also thanks to with Robin Hood, it’s all free. So it changed my approach a little bit not having to think about or worry about those commissions, especially since I’m using such a low dollar amount of money.
Clay: Right. I was going to ask about that because I was thinking I didn’t know Fidelity had jumped on the train, but apparently they’ve jumped on it. But yeah, that makes such a big difference. Say what you want about Robin Hood and the app and the customer service. I mean, they’re making things like your situation just so much more effective because with a $500 account, you just want to stay involved. I mean, that’s with no fees, not that you’re using the account like you said, because you want to go shopping for a Rolls Royce, but it makes just seeing some green that much quicker when you don’t have to worry about all those pesky fees and all that annoying stuff.
Clay: So I mean, I guess, what exactly are you working on as of right now? So let’s kind of bring people current state of time. Are you still doing options? You mentioned swing trading. But I mean, what exactly are you working on. And what you kind of mainly focused on this point?
Tony: Well, I think options, as much as I enjoy options, I don’t think that’s for me at the moment until I can find a brokerage that works better with a conditional orders. I don’t even know if that’s possible with options because I tried it a couple weeks ago. I just recently started to trade again. Over the process of developing my personal finances, I allocated, honestly guys, it was $50 a month. That is what I was putting into my brokerage over the course of X amount of months until it got to $500. So once I got to that mark, that’s when I say, “Okay. I’m going to start at least start practicing and working on the strategies that I’m learning in these webinars and through your Clay Trader University.
Tony: So options for me, I had a little mini account fire a couple weeks ago because, again, I got into an options trade that was a good setup, but it went in the wrong direction. So and I missed my stop loss because there’s was no conditional order there, and it kind of went a little bit further past it than I wanted, and I had to get out. And I lost a nice little chunk of that $500 because options, you can gain quickly or you can lose quickly. And I realized again that I need to step away from options until I can find a brokerage that can do different types of orders. And so right now what I’m working on is just all the different trade plans that you have in CTU. You have RVR trading, shorting for profit, volcano trading, trampoline trading.
Tony: What I’m doing is I’m depending on a chart setup. I’m trying to find setups that I like, which typically are panic setups or good speculation setups, and working the trade. Lately I’ve found a few volcano type setups, which seem to … That I like, that have been good for me. I’m averaging about 7% return on my money that I’m investing in it. $500, that’s not a lot, but it keeps accumulating. It keeps building up and building up. And so that’s really what I’m doing. I’m refining everything that you’ve taught us in CTU and making sure that I continue to trade with a plan instead of let the trade, trade me per se.
Clay: I like that, yeah. Don’t let the trade trade you. You trade the trade. That’s good stuff. So it sounds like the account fire was not a matter of you breaking any sort of mental rules or anything like that. It was just literally a logistics thing in terms of the broker not offering you what you needed to have in place.
Tony: Yeah. And also with being at work, some of it was clearly my fault. I mean, it was all my fault. It went in the opposite direction. But had I been able to be looking at it every second, I would’ve been able to get my stop loss like I had planned. And I missed it by a couple minutes. I mean, a couple minutes in an option, that’s a lot of money. And it reminded me that, you know what, I just with my day job, I just can’t do it right now.
Clay: Yeah, no.
Tony: So it was a good lesson to be learned.
Clay: Exactly. And that’s why I always tell people when you’re starting off, I always tell people $500 for those exact reasons. I’d rather have you making that sort of mistake with a $500 account than let’s say with a $50,000 account or a $5000 account. Oh, wow, that mistake just cost me 2500 bucks, or 1000 bucks, or 1500 bucks, when that same exact mistake could’ve cost you just 100 bucks. I mean, nobody wants to lose 100 bucks. But in proportion, yeah, I think a lot of people would just be more than happy with the $100 than the $1000, which some people might just go full bore into things, it’s a little too fast, but I’m just glad you’re learning those lessons in a more-
Tony: Yeah. I agree. It’s definitely a manageable loss, $100 instead of a couple thousand.
Clay: No. Exactly. It’s not quite as big of a shovel is required to dig yourself out. Now are you, when you go full bore, are you … I guess what are you working on right now? Are you looking actively for a broker? Or have you abandoned options totally because you don’t think that there’s a broker? Or I guess I’m a little confused. What exactly are you doing right now? Because I get it, you don’t like options. But the reason you don’t like options is because of your current brokers.
Clay: So I mean, are you searching for a broker at this very stage? Or what exactly? Where does that stand?
Tony: I think that’s going to come. I just haven’t really gotten around to it yet because again, I’m focusing mostly on developing my trading strategy with the market, not necessarily with options. And I really do like options, and I think that eventually I’m going to start looking for another broker, so for those of you listening, feel free to message me and give me your hints on a broker that can do conditional orders because I just … Until I get to a point where I can step away from work, I just cannot watch the charts every second. Trading on a day timeframe is kind of where I’m at. I can do 30 minute timeframes fairly responsibly. But anything more than that, I just can’t. I can’t do it. So yeah, so right now, no. Options are out for the moment until I can find a broker. And eventually, I’ll get motivation to do that. And until then, I’m going to just continue trading stocks the way I like and building up those good habits.
Clay: All right. So let me ask you this. When your account was growing, way back at the start that we talked about, but it just wasn’t growing at the scale you wanted it to grow, was that with options or with stock?
Tony: It was mostly stock. Options, I had a couple good gains in options. But I had a huge account fire because I wasn’t … I didn’t understand something about options, like the whole theta process. And the longer you stay in, well, you can lose more money. And I lost a big chunk of my account because I wasn’t paying attention to how long I was in the options. So I stopped because I guess I needed to learn a little bit more about options before I continued trading it, which is between then and now, I’ve gone through CTU a few times, so I think I’m a little more versed to trade options now if I had the ability to really focus on it. But yeah, so back then, that’s what happened and got me to stop. I had an account fire.
Clay: Okay. So I’m just thinking out loud here. If you were having all that success with stock back in the day, even though you were only right 30% of the time or whatever, and like you said, because everything was controlled and all that, your account was still growing. Why not just devote everything to stock right now in the sense of that’s what you’re wanting to do? I don’t know if that … Does that make sense?
Tony: Yeah. That’s what I’m doing. I mean, I’d like to get to options again, but I’m not, again, like I said, I’m not really thinking about it right now because I’m focusing on stocks and continuing on doing that. And if that’s all that I ever do, I’m okay with that. That’s fine because I enjoy the market. I enjoy trading stocks. And I enjoy the setups that I’ve been getting into. Even right now as we’re talking, I’m currently in a trade that’s being managed by my conditional orders. And if it works out, hopefully I can check here after we’re done to see how it’s doing. But at the moment, I’m not worried about it because I have everything put into place.
Clay: Okay. And that’s what you were doing. All right. That makes more sense. I couldn’t remember. I was sitting here for a second, like well, if you’ve had all this success with options, why are you slacking so much on finding an options broker? But no, it’s the opposite.
Clay: Fidelity right now, you are totally comfortable with when it comes to just stocks and their conditional orders.
Tony: Correct. And I have to hold myself accountable with options because it’s like I think you said many times, penny stock on steroids, and that’s very attractive to me. And I like that thought process, but it doesn’t always work out in your favor. And I had to be able to manage that risk better. So maybe that’s not for me for a while, and I’m okay with that.
Clay: Right. Exactly. And it’s also one of those situations where, sure, things may not add up as quickly as they would if you’re doing options. But it’s still going to add up, so I’m glad to know that you’re devoting your time and energy to what has a track record of working for you before, and as you just fine tune those skills, which is what you’re clearly doing right now, then yeah, as you add more and more money, that’s just going to allow you to get to where you want to be that much quicker.
Clay: So do you have any sort of goals in the sense of are you looking to … I guess what needs to happen for you to then take the next step in terms of starting to deposit more and more money into your trading account?
Tony: Well, I just have to finish the plan that I’m working on with my personal finances, which is basically getting a certain amount of money in my bank account for emergencies. And then it’s on. I mean, I’m going to start putting in the money that I want to put in. I do trade … I mean, I guess I don’t know if trading’s the right word, but I do the grow rich strategy as well because I have a nice amount of money in an IRA that I work on that. But right now it’s a matter of getting through a certain portion of the SLAB Money Method. And then once I’m done with that, I’m going to have money free to start putting it in where I want to put it in.
Clay: Awesome. And I would definitely back up your thought process. Yeah, I mean, the grow rich strategy, that is definitely a strategy, and it’s a strategy that should really be in place before you ever go and start to do trading at all because I don’t want to use the work guaranteed, but there’s definitely a good solid historic track record of that strategy working over time, just being over time, nothing’s going to happen within a week or even a few years. So yeah, I’m glad that is in motion because it is a strategy and it is a strategy that should definitely be focused on as part of the bigger plan that you’re doing. And I think you might’ve mentioned it, but I missed it. So how far off do you think you are before you get the final kind of piece of the SLAB Method and then you can start, like you said, just really starting to pour money in the trading account? A few more months?
Tony: I’m about six, seven months, somewhere around there. I guess it all depends on how things go. And I know that one thing that I did to kind of help, and this might push that forward a little bit, was I am going to be getting a return from my taxes this year that I’m going to put directly into that. But what I did halfway through the year, I don’t know if you recall, but I sent you a question about to do for your Money With Clay Podcast about how to, or what to do about your W-4s and increasing your contributions, or lessening the contributions, so that way the government doesn’t have all your money. That way, you can get all your money now instead of waiting until the end of the year. So that’s one thing I think that can cut off a couple months when I put that in there. But yeah, no, that’s it, man. Once that’s done, I already have my thought process on my future and retirement. I have everything else into place. I already have planned out how to start attacking my mortgage and doing all this stuff.
Tony: And to somebody who might not be where I’m at with my personal finances, it may sound overwhelming. It’s just kind of like working out. The more you do it, the easier it is, or you understand the motions. You understand the process. You understand how to do this workout, how to do that. And for me, it’s nothing anymore. It used to be a huge thing, where I’d look at my money and go, “What the hell do I do with this?” And now it’s like I look at my money and I know everything that’s going to be happening with it, barring an emergency, of course. But even then, if an emergency strikes up, I have something allocated for that already. So it’s just a matter of time at this point. And hopefully it gets here quicker because I would definitely like to have more return on my investments and my brokerage.
Clay: No, that’s good stuff. Once you do, six, seven months from now, and you start to pour money into the account, are you looking to build that account up to a certain amount? Or I guess what’s the plan for that as far as … Because I could see something like this where I want to get up to 1000, but I’m not willing to put any more in above 1000 until I can first prove that I can grow it to, and I’m just making this up, 1250. But if I can show that I can grow it up to 1250, then my goal will be to add another 500. How are you going to approach all that?
Tony: You know, honestly, I’ve never even thought about that. I was just more thinking, hey, I’m going to be able to continue to fund this in an amount that I can allocate monthly because I know that I have a success rate with this. I know that no matter, even what I put in, I will take losses, but overall, my account’s going up. So I think as long as I have everything else accounted for with my retirement, I’m going to just continue funding it as it goes. I don’t know. I don’t know if there’s a stop point where, hey, this is good and I can let it go on its own. $10,000 maybe, I don’t know. That’s a good question.
Clay: Can I offer my two cents?
Tony: Sure. Two cents is all I put in? I like that, Clay.
Clay: Two cents, yes, exactly. And you’ll be shopping for your private island in T minus three weeks. But the only risk I see-
Tony: Is that in Michigan?
Clay: The only risk I see is the more, the bigger your account goes, all of a sudden you can start to take on bigger positions, and position sizing, scaling up, too quickly can bring the house of pain quite quickly. So it might be something worth consider, you want to bring it up to, like I said, $1000. And then let me get used to feeling, okay, now I have a $1000 account. Wow, I could actually buy X amount more shares. Or wow, I could actually get a couple more contracts.
Tony: I got you.
Clay: And like I said, you want to … You see where I’m going with this?
Tony: Yes, I do.
Clay: So first prove to yourself that you’re capable of handling that size of account, where you don’t go in there and take on some massive position. And then all of a sudden, you get slaughtered. But after you prove that you can handle that size, then yeah, now add in a little bit more. Pause for I don’t know how long that is, a month, couple, whatever it may be. Show that you can actually grow that amount and show that when you’re wrong, again, you’re not blowing up your entire account because that’s the hard thing, is you want to be wrong because when you’re wrong, that’s actually the true test because of course you want to win, but after you’re wrong a couple times, if you actually still have an account that’s there and bigger than it was, okay. That means I can handle this account, and none of the losses have … The times that I’m wrong have wiped away the account. So I would just, like I said, it’s your money, it’s your plan, but from an outsider listening in-
Tony: It makes sense.
Clay: You always just want to scale in because … And I mean, you listen to the podcast. There’s been many guests that all of a sudden, they have more money. And then their position sizing gets way out of whack. And then, yeah, the market just whacks them in the face. We don’t really want to get whacked in the face by the market.
Tony: Well, I guess the good news is by the time that time does come, that’s would be one monthly payment for me to get to $1000 because at that point, I’ll have no debt. And then jeez, I’ll just be rolling around in money I guess. [crosstalk 01:03:57].
Clay: You’ll be like Scrooge McDuck. You’ll open up your big safe and put on your swim suits and just dive into it.
Tony: I like it.
Clay: But yeah, that can be a catch 22, just something to keep in mind.
Tony: That’s a good thought process and I like it because right now with the $500, I just recently started, I think it was in October. And because I do the swing trade, sometimes it takes a week, a little over a week for the trade to kind of play out. I’ve done about eight trades so far, and half of them have been successful. But even the ones that weren’t, I had a mitigation point, so it’s still the losses were mitigated, and still I consider successful, even though I took a loss. But it wasn’t anything like it was when I was rolling around in Kool-Aid before I learned how to trade.
Clay: Yes. The good old Kool-Aid. Putting aside the … I mean, it is still a loss. But if you set aside the options where you’re like, “Oh, yeah. I missed that stop loss, and my broker’s not set up conditionally for this.” So a lesson learned there. But putting that one aside, is your $500, would it be higher than where it was, even with these losses and the wins that you’ve experienced?
Clay: Nice. Okay, great.
Tony: I think I posted it a couple … Because I go onto the online community. But I’m at a day job, so I don’t get to kind of hang out and talk as much as I’d like. I get to work about 7:30. I say, “Hey, what’s up?” And I kind of poke around and I look for a setup in the day that maybe I can get into. But yeah, right now for the $500 investment, most trades are getting me about 30 bucks when it’s over. I’ve gotten to certain target points, and I eventually get stopped out because I get to CEO mode. And if those of you guys don’t know what that is, there’s a thing called Clay Trader University that can teach you.
Clay: You were not paid to say that. Were you?
Clay: I can see it right now. This whole thing is scripted. You scumbag, Tony’s not real. He’s a scripted guest.
Tony: Yeah. But no, I was not paid to say that. But it’s just the truth. You invest in yourself, you can understand that stuff. So most of my trades that when they’re successful right now are getting me on average about 6%. When I lose, my losses are about I would say average is about 2.2%. I’m looking at a spreadsheet now that has all this stuff that I track.
Clay: Awesome. I love how you know that somebody’s doing it the right way and taking it seriously when they give you the 2.2%. There must be an equation somewhere because it’s not, it’s around two. What does that mean, around two? But 2.2, I like the tracking here.
Tony: Well, let’s get exact then. On average, I’m at 5.78% in gains on my trades.
Clay: Nice. I love it. No, that’s good stuff. And how many trades have you done?
Tony: So far eight.
Clay: Okay. Nice. Good.
Tony: They’re good because when you’re doing the swing trades, it takes a while to develop. I’m in one right now that I got in on the 21st of November, and I hit my first price lock point, this was a volcano trade, and now I’m just waiting for the next one to come, and it takes a little while.
Clay: Awesome, yeah. But even eight since October, that’s still a good amount. But at the end of the day, tell me about the losses, and you were able to tell me about them. And when it’s 2.2 compared to 5.78, that’s what I like to hear. And I’m assuming what’s helping out with those losses is, like you said, some of them, I mean, they’ve hit your mitigation point. And sure, it still may not ultimately work out, but by hitting those mitigation points, that’s at least keeping those losses that much smaller. Is that fair?
Tony: That is very fair. And I can thank the webinars for that because there was something came up where I was, because I do a lot of my mitigating by feel, even though it’s like still a day trade, sort of swing trade scenario. And there was one scenario that came up where you would ask a question like, “Hey, is this making everyone nervous?” And I was like, “No.” I’m like, “Well, then you shouldn’t be trading by feel then.” And my thought was well, I’m using such a small position that it doesn’t make me nervous. If it goes sideways, I’m not really losing a lot.
Tony: And then I had to think about that because if it did go sideways, I had to stop thinking about it as how much money I was going to get, but look at the percentage of the loss because that’s what I have to focus on, not necessarily the money. And if I would’ve lost on that, it would’ve been about a 7% loss if I wouldn’t have mitigated when it was a clear, it was a [inaudible] that was a clear point that, hey, you should probably take some profits off the table right now.
Clay: And I like that. As soon as you do that, like you said, that’s going to manipulate those percentages, so sure, it still could potentially be a loser, but it ain’t going to be no 7% loser. Right?
Tony: Right. Yeah, and just like right now, if I lost on the trade that I’m in right now, here’s where I would lose $3. But only because I mitigated it. And once I mitigate it, I put $12 in the bank. So worst case scenario, I’m going to be up nine bucks. Yeah, it’s not a lot of money, but look at the percentages because at some point, this is going to be a lot of money. Go ahead.
Clay: No, no, no. You go ahead.
Tony: And that’s what I’m trying to look at. I think somebody posted today, I think Dan, I like watching his posts. That dude’s on fire, man. He posted something-
Clay: [crosstalk] 30,000 bucks today or something crazy.
Tony: Man, here I am making $12. But somebody else commented on it, “Hey, don’t look at the dollars. Look at the percentages.” And that’s what I’ve trained myself to do over the past X amount of months.
Clay: And even to peel that back one further layer, look at the habits behind those because you can still have good percentages, but if there’s bad habits generating those percentages, it’s only a matter of time before, see you later. And those percentages will go to the worst. But yeah, you’re absolutely right. And that brings up the point that I was going to say as a listener, if you’re sitting here saying, “$30, $12,” hey, don’t look at the amount. He is forming good habits because what’s scalable is good habits. What’s really not scalable is just randomly making stuff up, randomly having a plan, and just getting lucky and fool’s gold. You can’t, well, I guess you can scale fool’s gold. But fool’s gold is designed to build up your hope to where you go big, and then all of a sudden, it will crush you because there is never any sort of good habits actually being formed.
Tony: Oh, yeah. And my previous podcast will back that up because I talk a lot about being in penny stocks and rolling around in Kool-Aid and really [inaudible] to all that.
Clay: You were the … I mean, I feel like wasn’t the name of your podcast something to do with penny stocks, or Kool-Aid, or something like that?
Tony: It was.
Clay: Because you were just guzzling it down if I remember right.
Tony: Oh, yeah. I was rolling around. I just had a big old bath of it. I’d jump right into it and just splash around and just rub it all over my head. And that’s what I was doing, and I bit into it, and it was good, but until I looked at my account. And then it’s like, “Oh, that’s not so good.”
Clay: That’s funny. To go from that, rolling around in your Kool-Aid, to now sitting here. Yeah, well, I lose 2.2%. And then I win 5.78%. It’s like, all right. Is this the same guy?
Clay: But full circle, you can’t ask for really a better conclusion. But full circle to what you started talking about, it’s amazing what happens when you actually have a plan and you do something with the plan, because yeah, you can’t take yourself to literally being blinded by penny stock nonsense Kool-Aid to sitting here talking to the second decimal place of win percentages and losses and all that. So that is good stuff. And I think that this whole transformation as a trader occurred while you were knocking out debt. Well, not knocking out, basically you’re debt free minus the mortgage. You’re well on your way. I mean, you’re already healthy. Now it’s just continuing to get that much more healthy. And all this stuff was going on while you were … I mean, that’s just good stuff.
Tony: And for me, all this stuff goes, it just simply goes hand in hand. If you take care of this, it’ll make this better. If you take care of that, it’ll make this better. It’ll help you achieve all the goals that really want because-
Clay: Right. You keep getting luckier. Right? The more you do, the luckier you get. It’s like, oh, well, if I do that, then I get lucky with that. And then by getting lucky with that, oh, look, I get lucky there, there, there. It’s like the circle of luck from … I mean, you’ve probably seen that movie several times. Your daughter like the Lion King?
Tony: Oh, God, yeah. She didn’t really care for that remake that they did. And I didn’t really either. I like the original cartoon back in the day. That’s the one I like.
Clay: I’ve heard mixed reviews on that one.
Tony: You can miss that one. Just focus on the Mandalorian, and if we’re all good we might [crosstalk 01:12:54].
Clay: I haven’t seen that one. I’ve heard … No kidding. Disney beast-moding it.
Tony: Man. You know what, and I should’ve known better because at the time, right when Disney Plus was going out, I was in the middle of allocating some, so I did a rollover with my 401. I was done letting … I forgot. Whoever it was, was holding my money and doing the investments with it. And I was done paying them to do that when I know I can clearly do this myself. And I was allocating funds, and I wasn’t paying attention to the release date of Disney Plus. And man, did I miss out on that. Ugh, so sad.
Clay: Well, what I should’ve done in my hindsight investing account was as soon as they announced that they were buying Fox, I should’ve just been like, “Oh, game over. Load the boat that much more.” But I did buy some. But I didn’t load the boat as much as I should’ve.
Tony: What is it, at new highs today? I mean, gosh.
Clay: Yeah. It’s a lot higher than when I had the opportunity to get, but oh well.
Tony: I definitely recommend Mandalorian. For those of you out there listening, watch the Mandalorian.
Clay: Now be careful because you are a Disney shareholder, so that could be considered stock manipulation because that would benefit your stock position. So full disclosure, Tony and I are both long Disney in our retirement accounts. I think we’re safe now that we’ve offered up that disclosure.
Tony: I didn’t say buy Disney, I didn’t say buy Disney Plus, just watch it. It’s fine. People will find it somewhere.
Clay: More people watch.
Tony: You can get it free.
Clay: It’s sketchy, Tony. You’re pumping. I might actually call and report you myself.
Tony: Let me help with that. You can get Disney Plus for free with Verizon.
Clay: Oh, great. Now we need another disclosure. I am long Verizon two ticker VZ. We’re going to jail, Tony. We are going to jail.
Tony: We’re out of control, out of control.
Clay: We’re going to jail. This is insane. Well, Tony, it is over an hour. I don’t know where the time went. But this was a good time. I have no doubt in my mind there will be people out there that will benefit from this because, yeah, you’re walking proof of I don’t want to hear any excuses, where there’s a will, there’s a way. Follow the plan, just keep at it, and good things can happen. So Tony, I look forward to having you back again. And also, thank you for doing this so quickly. I talked with you yesterday morning, I shot you an email. And then here we are doing it the next day. So from that point of view, I thank you very much. This was a cake walk, and I like cake walks. Just not all the time because you can’t eat too much cake, Tony.
Tony: Twice a week.
Clay: Can’t it too much cake. Yeah. All right, Tony, well thank you very much for hanging out.
Tony: I appreciate it. Thank you.
Clay: All right, listeners. Before you go, final few things. First off, if you’re listening on iTunes or any other podcast players, Spotify, make sure to subscribe so that you know when new episodes are coming out, especially on iTunes, if you could leave us a rating and a written feedback, that really goes a long way and would help us out. And we really would appreciate that. So if you could do that, like I said, thank you in advance. And then if you’re listening at claytrader.com on the show notes page, then there should be a live chat box in the bottom right hand corner, so you can reach out, whether it’s comments, questions, suggestions. We love to hear all that sort of stuff. So it’s always nice to hear when a message starts off with, “Hey, I was listening to the podcast,” it’s awesome. So we love to hear from you as listeners. And we’re more than willing to answer any questions or what have that you may have.
Clay: But if nothing else, like I said, just leave us a rating on iTunes or a written review. That really goes a long way, and we appreciate it. So thank you again, Tony. Thank you, listeners. We’ll see you all back next week.
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