With unlimited time, unlimited money and unlimited resources, of course you might do something differently. But your project is defined by the limitations and boundaries that are in place when you set out to accomplish something.
You build something remarkable because of the boundaries, not without them. – Seth Godin
This quote is from a post that Seth Godin published over the weekend called Embracing Boundaries. He instantly grabs all of us nerds by referencing a Commodore 64 and then uses that example to illustrate the concept of boundaries.
As traders, we can all relate to struggling with boundaries of our own. Given Warren Buffett’s time, money, and resources, we would all take a drastically different approach to trading.
Because we, even the best of us, face much more limiting boundaries than Mr. Buffett does, we are forced to work within those boundaries.
For many of us, trading is not our primary income, which means that we are forced to relegate our trading attention to evenings and weekends.
Most of us are also limited in terms of capital. Not only do we not have Berkshire Hathaway level money, most of us don’t even have enough capital to trade a basic cross-asset trend following strategy like the one my man Andreas Clenow talks about in Following the Trend.
We also don’t have the inside access that many of the big time players do. If Buffett was thinking about investing in Uber, he could get the CEO on the phone instantly. Dude wouldn’t even think of returning my call.
The beautiful thing about trading, which is also the beautiful thing about any form of art, is that we can still create something spectacular within the boundaries that we find ourselves confined to.
There is an almost endless string of stories of traders who started on a shoestring budget with very little time and no connections that ended up creating astounding success out of nothing.
While it might not feel like it in the heat of battle, the boundaries that confine your trading might be helping you to develop as a trader far more than they are holding you back. Like Seth says, we should embrace them.