Improve your productivity

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Betfair Trading Advice

If you are reading this, it means you are interested in improving your trading. But let me be very clear. To be successful as a trader. It isn’t just about graphs, ladders and market signals.

I want to discuss productivity. When I worked in a car factory whenever we heard that word “productivity” it meant we were about to get more work. But what does it really mean in our day to day lives?

The biggest barrier we face when we are striving to learn new skills or improve the quality of our lives is TIME.

Time waits for no one.

To take things to that next level. To really “kick on” with your goals and aspirations, you need a strong work ethic and the ability to think clearly and objectively.
There are many barriers in our way stopping us achieving this.

You will have heard this line from so many quarters.

“Hard work = success”.

 What about this one?

“Work smarter, not harder”.

 I prefer this line.

 “Hard work + Smart work = Success”

 

Adding Value

What I think is much more is important is how you value your time. We have all heard about the old Pareto 80/20 rule, and how it can be applied to so many situations in life.
In this situation we can say that 20% of our input leads to 80% of our outcomes.

Trimming down the excess

Over a decade ago I found Twitter. I saw it as a fabulous way to collect data and opinion. Back then it worked very well. Things have changed. I spoke a while back about the negative bias that operates within Twitter and in fact social media in general. Twitter is now an angry mob.

Not only does social media take you away from doing what you should be doing. It can also alter your mood. How many times have you spent 10 minutes on Twitter and then the next hour being annoyed with something you read? How is that adding any value to your life?

Are there any other “time sappers” in our everyday lives?

Smart phone – It’s probably the biggest drain in your life. Is it possible to have a normal conversation with anyone without them looking at their phone every 2 minutes?

Facebook/Instagram/TickTok etc

Email – I get over 100 emails a day. 95 of them add zero value to my life. The problem with email and the world we live in now is people expect an instant response. I had an email last week from someone. I didn’t reply as I was busy doing something else. 1 hour later I got another one from the same person. It said “????????????”.

Seriously?

Consider an auto responder that says something like.

“Thanks for your email. I answer my emails at xx:xx pm. I will respond in due course.”

The way I use my time and social media has changed. Let me share that with you, and also a way that will prove to you in no uncertain terms just how much time you are wasting each day.

What I would like you to do is create a journal for 30 days. I expect that after a few days you will see what I am saying is shockingly true.
I have knocked up an excel sheet you can download HERE
Fill this in (the instructions are within the sheet)

I think you will be amazed with just how much time you waste. 15 minutes here and there on your phone or Facebook/Twitter, answering pointless emails. Even if you don’t use this time to be productive,

This may sound  harsh. But if you want to be productive. To spend time educating yourself. Adding value to your life. You need to eradicate the things that are not adding value and sapping your time and energy.

Once you have freed up all of this time, and have a new energy and positive outlook. Use it wisely.

 

Bank Protection

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One of the key skills any person aspiring to be successful when trading on Betfair’s exchange or placing bets with any bookmaker is some sort of bank management. In particular keeping your bank as intact as possible.

One of the fundamental principles is you need to be able to facilitate further growth in your fund. If you lose that, or severely diminish it. It could be game over.
This video will give a few pointers on this subject.

As always i welcome your comments, and will always try to reply in a timely fashion.
If you would be interested in learning how I trade and learning from me. Please either look at my “Learn to trade with Steve” page. Or alternatively have a look at my Online Learning Portal Sportstradingschool.
Cheers Steve

Secret​ Sauce?

The truth about Secret Sauce

Over the years I have interacted with 1000’s of aspiring traders/bettors and read tens of thousands of forum posts and tweets. It is very clear to me there is some misconception about trading. I am right hear and now going to lay that bare.

So why do so many assume that people who are Pro traders (or profess to be) have an unlimited supply of this product? If you purchase their products they will let you have a few bottles of it, or give you that “secret” that only they know?

I think I know the answer. I will share that with you now.

Lets look at some betting history. I want to share my own experiences, but I am sure that these theories will strand up in the previous centuries also.

When i started to seriously become interested in Horse Racing back in the early 1990’s. I would faithfully buy the Racing Post every day. This was packed with pages and pages of adverts. Tipsters lines and services. Remember the internet was in it’s infancy then. Hardly anyone had access to it, and it certainly wasn’t the marketing machine it is now.

I tried a few of these services, they were frequented by some colourful characters. I was as naive as many of you reading this are, and was taken in by the romance and story behind each selection as the tipster wove his web of intrigue and mystery.

This is the sort of thing that was said.
” Good morning, it’s just after 8 and I have just got back from the heath (we presume Newmarket heath where the horses train in public view). I saw Henry’s (Cecil) string and he has a real beauty . The talk around town is all about this fella. He is running tomorrow. I am waiting for my contact in the stable to call me late tonight. He will tell me if it’s going to be “running for us”. (meaning the stable have it “laid out” to win) Call back tomorrow, we have have a MAX BET”

That is the sort of bullshit that was peddled. The “tipster” probably used Timeform and was a fair judge of form. But the used all of the cloak and dagger stuff to give himself that air of mystery and credibility. The masses were taken in. Someone HAS to know something. Right?

When you see a horse heavily backed these days. What do you assume? “Someone KNOWS something”? They know more than you, don’t they? 
THEY KNOW“?
What does that mean? That someone somewhere with access to that secret sauce, has the bottle out and is using copious amounts of it to make a load of money. YOU are missing out!!!!!!

Lets fast forward to modern times.

Human behaviour dictates that we need confirmation that we are right. We crave that.Not just in the betting sense, in EVERY sense. Do you drive the “right” car? Wear the “right” clothes. Even go to the “right” holiday destination. We are more sheep like than fucking sheep!

Here lies a massive clue to understand trading btw.

The reason that “secret sauce” exists.

Secret sauce exists because the modern version of those phone line tipsters want you to believe that it exists. The people that post on twitter showing their amazing results, or selling their tips, their ebooks, their courses, etc. Want you to think that only they can provide you with that elusive “secret sauce”.

I want to make sure that everyone knows that there is no such thing.

Are these people are the modern version of that telephone tipster?

Now they may well have a great product to sell you. They may well add real value to your trading. But the secret sauce is the “hook”.

As I embark on my final workshop for 2019. I know that there will be at least one person in the room that will expect me to sprinkle some “secret sauce” over their lunch. On the one hand they may well be disappointed to find out that there isn’t any. On the other hand I KNOW they will be relieved to see that, in truth there is no such thing. What I will be sharing with them is a process. A way to understand each “signal’ that comes into the market. What it is. What it means, How to interpret it. How to use it in tandem with the other signals. To gain an understanding of how the market may move.

A process. Unambiguous, understandable and within reach of mere “mortals”.

There is be NO secret sauce, implied or supplied. Just a large helping of common sense and direction.

I don’t have any workshops booked at this time. If you are interested in how I can help you learn to trade. Please contact me  (mugsgame@hotmail.co.uk) and i will send you the latest availability when I have some. Alternatively you can start off with my ONLINE WORKSHOP. These workshops  mirror what I teach in my “physical” workshops and depending on the package you buy, You can get a heavily subsidised, or even FREE place to a workshop as part of the package. These are great value. 
Although there is no secret sauce included! Sorry about that!

Me,me,me,me,me,me

I guess you would be thinking with a title like this, that I have decided to write a post all about………..me. So I can remind you just how great I am. A great trader, a jolly fine chap and all round good egg. Sorry. It’s not that.

One of the proudest achievements in my life time is a by product of trading. My education business. It’s what takes up most of my “working time, it’s what drives me on and it’s something I am very passionate about.

Over 5 years ago when all this started, I never imagined the effect on my life it would have. Although I would say I “fell in to it”. Once it started I put my heart and sole into it, The people who stay usually stay a long time, and when they do move on, almost without exception get a lovely message.

So when new people join us, join our “family”. They get a warm welcome and fit seamlessly into the group. I am blessed with having some amazing people with me. The enthusiasm they show keeps it all going. It never feels stale or out of touch. There is never shortage of challenging questions to answer or problems to fix.

The big benefit to new people though is they get to tap into all this experience. I often say to people thinking about joining us. “It’s not about me. It’s not all about Steve Howe”. Yeah, I set the tone, the culture. I steer the ship and provide the guidance and answers to the tough questions. BUT, and it’s a massive BUT. I genuinely feel that if you are at the start of the learning journey, picking up a new strategy. The people best placed to help you are the ones who are 2 months, 5 months or even 12 months further along that journey. the issues you will face are fresh in their minds, the challenges are raw.

I wanted to write this to pay tribute to my community. I wanted to let the World know how awesome THEY are. It isn’t, never has been and never will be all about ME.

Review of my Workshop

I was both delighted and humbled by this review from someone who I greatly admire. A young lady who had a sparkling career in professional racing. She knows her stuff and is a tremendous asset to our community.

You can read the review here https://www.greenfilly.com/steve-howe-its-a-mugs-game-workshop-review/

I just want to say that I never ask people to write reviews to say positive things about me. That’s not to say I am grateful and humbled when they do!
The reason I have linked this is to give you an impartial view from “the other side of the fence”.

I strongly advise you to follow her and read her blog regularly. She writes beautifully and talks with authority and humour about something she is very passionate about. This Lady is a rising star within our trading community. You read it here first!

You can follow Green Filly on Twitter @filly_green

The blog is https://www.greenfilly.com/blog/

Cheers
Steve

5 Things To Avoid When Trading

5 Things To Avoid When Trading

 

  1. Distractions
  2. No exit plan
  3. FOMO
  4. Get involved in markets that haven’t matured
  5. Letting previous trades influence you

 

 

Distractions

You will have read similar words from me before on this subject. If you are some sort of Zen warrior, you may be able to build some mental barriers to block out outside distractions. However, for us mere mortals we need to put extra steps in place. Just having a quiet area to work in, without the influence of any outside interference is something I consider very important. Imagine taking the family to work with you and then try to do your job!

 

Having No Exit Plan

Or even no plan at all! I am often staggered by traders’ lack of planning. A bad plan is better than no plan. One of the very first things I do when formulating my trading plan for a market is to identify a potential exit route. I have different routes for back and lay trades. But before I commit my money into a trade I want to know I can exit that trade with a minimal loss if I have got it wrong.

 

FOMO (Fear Of Missing out)

My pet hate, but a powerful emotion. Jumping on that bandwagon because you are scared to miss out is always punished harshly as I am sure many of you know. These band wagons or glory trains never last forever, and the later you get involved the more likely you will lose money. Spotting the beginning of a move and having that exit plan in place is so important. It does not matter what the twitter heroes are doing. Or any other traders you have access too. It’s important to realise that there are few that want to share their shite trades with you but are very happy to wave their cocks about when things are going well for them. It sucks you in, is destructive and I strongly advise you to do your own thing without any regard for what others say they are doing.

 

Get involved With Markets That Have Not Matured

What do I mean by this? A great indicator of a volatile market is to watch the candlesticks, what we are looking for is a smooth progression, and a build-up of money traded at each odds point. If the market is jumping up4 ticks and then down 3, then I do not consider the market safe enough to enter. If you watch the video below I hope this will make sense.

Be Affected By Previous trades

The impact of a previous trade is something we all feel. That includes a winning trade or a run of winning trades as well as losing ones. Trading can be severely affected by confidence. So when you are flying you can feel almost invincible, and when you are losing it can drag you into a dark place. This opens up a huge can of worms such as over trading, chasing losses, increasing you stakes unrealistically when you are doing well. All are destructive. Keep a calm, level head and don’t let your emotions carry you away in either direction.

5 Things you need to be a successful trader

Successful Trading: Five things you need:

 

  • Mental toughness
  • Focus
  • Toolkit
  • Process
  • Support

 

This list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s a good start. I could spend ages talking about each subject here. If I get asked enough then I probably will!

 

 

  • Mental Toughness

Let me be blunt. Trading is a real mind melter. It really gets inside your head and messes with it. Making what are normally rational decisions become very difficult in the heat of the battle. When you have your hard earned money involved it changes everything. Some people are over cautious. Others think they are invincible. It’s not until after the event and they see the result of their actions that reality kicks in. The key skill is to be able to manage your emotions, keep them in some sort of control. This enables you to apply the focus and processes you need to make a successful trade. Learning to trade is a long and arduous road. Even with a high level of training, it will take lots of practice and screen time. Lots of knock backs, false starts and disappointments. It is no coincidence that the guys I have been involved with long-term are mostly successful. The ones that lack the mental toughness to “dig in” are the ones who don’t quite get there.ind melter

 

  • Focus

Focus is something I think many of us overlook when it comes to planning a trading session. A lap top in the front room while eating your tea, listening to the days news from your partner and having a couple of excitable kids jumping all over you is not ideal conditions for a successful trading session.

Make sure you have a quiet place to trade with no interruptions. Imagine being Neo when he plugs into the Matrix – You won’t go far wrong.

BUT, do not exchange trading for spending a little time with your family.

 

  • Toolkit

What do I mean by a toolkit?  The tools of the trade. Starting with a bank. This should be money put aside specifically to trade with. Money that you can afford to lose, (who can afford to lose money????) i.e You won’t need it back to pay your rent or mortgage at the end of the month. It doesn’t have to be a huge amount. Even £50 can get you started.

 

Second on the list is hardware/internet. A mid-spec PC will be fine to trade with, as long as you have 10MB internet speed you will be fine. The most important part of a hardware set up is a decent sized screen. The bigger the better. (I use a 27”).

 

Third on the toolkit list is a third party App. This is essential. It enables you to see the signals that the market provides and find your trades. You can execute them quickly with one click mostly and enable protection systems like “Take SP”.  I am not going to recommend an App, but the most popular ones are Bet Angel, Gruss Betting Assistant and The Geeks Toy. All slightly different and all top class products.

 

  • Process

Sitting there blindly clicking away may well make you a few quid. But in general, knowing what you are doing is a good idea! The markets throw up signals that help you to work out what may happen next. Your mission is to find these signals and interpret them.

What is vital is to concentrate on the process and execution, NOT how much profit you are making. That will come with time once you have mastered the PROCESS.

Training is an excellent idea. Whether that is with me or with someone else. Going alone isn’t always the best investment in your time or bank balance. Invest in yourself!

 

  • Support

This comes into two parts really.

 

Part 1 – Partner and family

You must have the support of your partner when starting this journey. They will soon get fed up with you being away from the family unit every spare hour you have, possibly losing money too. Partners expect instant results!!!! This is very unlikely. However much you make, it isn’t worth losing your partner for.

 

Part 2 – Other Traders/Mentors

From my experience running MGW, our Mastermind Program is a great success. It brings like-minded folk together, lets them learn from each other in a friendly and creative environment. Having a shoulder to cry on. Someone who understands what you are actually talking about means a lot. It’s hugely beneficial both in terms of learning and your mental health too.

 

My next Workshop runs on 24thSeptember in Coventry.

There are still a few places left.

Workshop Link