Stages of Trading Competence

Much the same as The Four Stages of Learning model, the Stages of Trading Competence follow a 4-stage process.

These are:

Stage 1: Unconscious Incompetence

Trader starts here. They don’t know what they are trying to accomplish or how. Focus on enthusiasm and the possibilities. Completely unaware of how badly it can go and how much effort it will take. Trader is 90% fueled by possibilities.

Stage 2: Conscious Incompetence

Trader has now realized there is much more to what they are trying to do than they thought. More doubt creeps in so now the focus is on knowledge. As they dig into the knowledgebase, they are overwhelmed by what is ahead and are experiencing how badly it can go. This phase is about fumbling around for easy answers. They are getting sparks of success here and there.

Stage 3: Conscious Competence

Trader now knows that they can’t just use someone else’s answers. They have their own. They are seeing the possibilities and are in a very focused, deliberate and logical skill-refining phase. The returns on their efforts are starting to show up. The consciously competent person executes their tasks much more successfully. Having to be conscious in effort, things move slowly.

Stage 4: Unconscious Competence

Career professional trader has now turned knowledge into an unconscious behavior that is natural to them. At this stage, the intuitive mind is in control and it is much more efficient. They remain at this stage until the environment changes and will briefly drop to Stage 3 or even Stage 2 to adjust. Results come very fast at this stage.

Download a handy image to remind you of the Stages of Trading Competence:

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