Trading Advice from Jay-Z


I see I said, jealousy I said
Got the whole industry mad at me I said
Then B.I. said, “HOV remind yourself
nobody built like you, you design yourself.”
I agree I said, my one of a kind self
Get stoned every day like Jesus did
What he said, I said, has been said before
“Just keep doing your thing,” he said, say no more

-Jay-Z from ‘A Dream’

I draw a great deal of inspiration from Jay-Z lyrics. The guy has tons of songs, and even entire albums, that boil down to working hard to achieve the success you envision for yourself.

This particular verse struck me yesterday because it works as an outstanding metaphor for trading. The concept of the song is a conversation that Jay-Z had in a dream with his deceased friend.

Jay-Z expresses to his friend his frustrations with feeling alone and isolated, which is similar to what Steven Pressfield talks about.

The friend responds by telling Jay-Z that he needs to remember that no one else is like him and he can become anything he wants to be. The conversation ends with him telling Jay-Z to “Just keep doing your thing.”

The same advice could be given to any trader, although it would probably need to be packaged a bit differently.

As a trader, you are a completely unique individual. That means that a strategy, style, or approach that earns millions for someone else might not work for you. It also means that people might think the strategy that does work for you is laughable. It might piss them off.

The only thing you can do is be yourself. Find the approach that works best for you, because “you design yourself.”

Once you find that approach, it doesn’t get easier.

“More money more problems – better believe it,” he said.

When the inevitable challenges,  frustrations, and feelings of isolation eventually come, you have to remember to focus on your strategy and how you trade it.

Just keep doing your thing. Say no more.

Photo Credit: Anirudh Koul via Compfight cc