I got Covid for the first time this week. Many on the desk didn’t miss their opportunity to tease me about being the last person on earth to get it. My son got it as well. That meant a trip to our house on the Jersey Shore to isolate from mom, his sister, and others. So it was just the boys on the Shore alone for 5 days. This experience reminded me of an important principle to remember for trading and life.
As I wrote in The PlayBook, good can come from bad. The bad is we both got Covid. The good was some new things my son and I experienced together and taught each other. We might not have ever experienced these things together or learned these new things from each other without catching Covid. Trading is a pretty hard job and this principle, good can come from bad, is important to remember. These past five days is another reminder that good can come from bad, if we are open to experience the good.
Here are some of our new experiences and lessons from our time together with Covid:
1. I taught my son the blessing of an AM walk. I took my son on my AM walk with me on the boardwalk. I turned my hotspot on so his iPad could connect. He listened to a book on audible, while he walked near me. On our first walk he wanted to head back quickly. By our 3rd, he asked if we could take the longer walk. He was exposed for the first time to the blessing of a long walk, while listening to a good book. This doesn’t happen if we both don’t catch Covid.
HT to @ppearlman for reminding us of the treasure of an AM walk.
2. We reviewed his report card in detail together. His report card came on one of the days we were at the house together. We reviewed his report card, line by line, and made notes about what he was doing well, areas for improvement, and then goals for the next semester. His perception of his report card and how he was doing in school was significantly more positive after our review. And we had the chance to work through a few areas where he can improve and how in a nonthreatening, productive way. A clear goal developed that he was excited to attack.
With the fast action of our NYC lives, with work and school and sports and homework, we have never had the time, quiet, and space to review a report card in such detail. We have never had the time, always rushing from one activity to another, to make the review such a productive experience.
(How the Daily Report Card Helped Legend Become the #1 Trader (Prop Firm)
3. We played soccer together- for hours. My son would play baseball everyday, and for as long as possible, if we let him. My wife and I are firm believers in exposing our kids to many different sports and not specializing at a young age. He recently broke his finger playing basketball so we couldn’t play baseball. So to get some exercise we headed across the street from our house to an open field and just kicked the soccer ball around. Quickly that turned into a one-on-one game of dad v son, which was great fun. My sense is soccer became a little more fun to my son because of our play. Maybe soccer gets added to the list of sports he plays. I wonder if we could have gone our whole lives together only playing baseball together, without the confluence of his broken finger and Covid.
4. We watched King Richard together, which has many terrific lessons for young athletes like my son. This movie reinforces the teaching of a growth mindset, without us parents having to preach it again. Without additional time to spend together, we never make the choice to watch this movie together.
5. I exposed him to Seinfeld, specifically the scene at the Chinese restaurant. He shared this YouTube short he found hilarious. We now have an inside joke revolving around Jaquavis. Pretty much everything now relates to what Jaquavis would do.
6. He taught me how to use the washer dryer at the house. I should probably be embarrassed about this point, but I am not. And he loves that he taught dad how to use it, which I love.
7. I taught him long division. Well I taught him how I learned it and he just did it like that. It remains to be seen whether this is how he is supposed to have learned it. But he can do it now.
Bad stuff happens to traders. We take a loss and lose money. But what good can come from that for your trading? We miss a big trade. But how can you make that a productive experience? You continually lose money in one stock. But how can you make that into a positive for your trading career? You are not making money as an independent trader. Well what can you do with that information to help your trading?
It was good to slow down. It was wonderful to experience new things together, around a few coughs. We got to see each other in a different environment and build a productive day together. Thank you Covid!
*Oh and we both tested negative and are back in NYC.
Mike Bellafiore is the Co-Founder of SMB Capital, a proprietary trading desk, and SMB Training, which provides trading education in stocks, options, and futures. Bella, @MikeBellafiore, is the author of One Good Trade and The PlayBook. He welcomes your trading questions at [email protected]
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