July 10, 2007 at 10:05 am | | Comments 3

I Wear T-Shirts to Work

The trading lifestyle can at times be demanding, but man…I sure love it. There are obvious perks of course, like unlimited potential income, but I also thoroughly enjoy some of the more subtle perks.

Like my wardrobe, for instance. Who am I trying to impress, seriously? I see these guys on CNBC sporting $2500 suits, but ironically their type is a dime a dozen. My label is Old Navy – don’t knock it. I’d rather have a unique t-shirt for a couple bucks than a big-name tailor for my imported silk suit. The other day I went into Chipotle wearing a t-shirt I bought off a clearance rack like 3 years ago with a faded iron-on decal of a 70’s muscle car on the front and I got a compliment! I don’t remember the last time I saw Dylan Ratigan tell a guest on the show that his pinstripes are sweet. Try to catch me on a day when I’m not in cargo shorts, I dare ya.

The speakers are usually on blast when I’m doing my “research.” I have no boss, and I get to call my own shots. I have no set hours. The smarter I work, the more I can get paid. My dog is next to my desk every day. I can make a fast food run anytime or go get a 44oz. Diet Coke whenever I need my caffeine fix. Shoes are optional!

You get the picture.

What I Get To Do

Don’t let the unusual perks fool you though, I work very hard. I’ve never been called lazy by anyone, probably because I didn’t give them a reason to. I am passionate about my work, and I thrive on the challenge of ongoing achievement. I get bored otherwise.

On an average day, you might find me performing a variety of tasks. I’m always stalking some trades, but due to the nature of the market, some days I am more market-focused than others. On those days when my trades don’t need as much babysitting, I’ll I focus more on my business and the educational side of what I do in the trading world.

My email inbox never seems to quit dinging at me, but I like it that way. Members and friends email me about the market, individual stocks or with funny stories. I feel no guilt when I take 2 minutes to laugh at an email loaded with pictures of redneck inventions. I post tons of messages on the forum in the member area of my site, interacting with traders, sharing insights and exchanging trading ideas. I tinker with software tools, write articles like this one you’re reading, and occasionally IM with trading buddies. I discuss ideas with my web developer.

And did I mention that I’m constantly on the lookout for trades? It is the trades that I’m most interested in during the course of the day since they’re at the heart of why I’m not under someone else’s employment to begin with.

Why I Do It

I’m an entrepreneur. I loathe the idea of working for someone else. I don’t want to be told what to do, so I work my tail off in order to keep working for myself. I don’t want a boss! Of course there are plenty of challenges and lean times, but it’s those times that really force me to grow. There’s something about putting your nose down and battling it out, whether it’s a stretch of tough trading or a lengthy to-do list which demands my attention. Once I get through it, I feel empowered and confident. I sleep better and walk a little taller. (But I don’t sleepwalk.)

When it comes to the main site at, I started it as a hobby since the market closes at 3pm here in Texas, but I quickly realized how helpful it was to my routine to post my trading ideas each day, much like a journal of how I’m viewing and trading the market day after day. I also missed trading in an office full of traders with ideas flowing back and forth. After all, there are lots of lessons to be learned (and reminded of) when you’re interacting with other traders regularly. That’s the selfish part.

The unselfish part really boils down to the fact that I like to help other traders. I had a few very good traders help me out in my early days, and passing along some of the things I’ve learned is a good thing to do. I’ve written about 250 of these free articles for the same reason – to share insights. There’s some fulfillment in doing so.

Along the way, I have of course seen the opinions of some people who generally believe that newsletter writers are snake oil salesmen who don’t know how to trade and are just out for the money. People will think as they wish, but my response to it is that if you saw how little the website generated in terms of revenue back in the early days, you’d know that I wouldn’t have continued doing it if I wasn’t passionate about the underlying premise, which is helping traders. And these days I’m 100% confident that if you were to ask any of our subscribers about it that they would quickly verify that I’m in this to provide help as much as trade ideas for them. I don’t reply to the complex questions of members with 1-line emails or generic answers. I provide thorough help so that they “get it” by the end of a conversation.

I enjoy providing encouragement – we all need some from time to time, don’t we? And I know I’m helping traders when I point out blind spots to someone who’s unsure of what is plaguing them. Every one of us have blind spots, which means somebody’s gotta help us if we are to improve. That “Aha!” moment is great to experience. That’s why I camp out in our members-only forum every trading day. I like to share ideas and help traders who are seeking it. If that weren’t the case, I certainly wouldn’t devote the time I do to providing assistance, because nobody is forcing me to do it. I truly enjoy it and find it more fulfilling than just executing my own trades.

So there it is. Wonder no more about what I do or why I do it! To some, my routine would seem like total chaos. Every day is different, exciting and new (kinda like the Love Boat), but that’s exactly how I want it. I get to make decisions that impact both my personal wealth as well as the health of my business. I have flexibilities and freedoms that “regular” people don’t, and it suits me perfectly. It may not be for everyone, but I do my best to share it with others. Yes, I work hard, but it’s on my terms and that’s why I love my job.

Plus I get to wear t-shirts.

Jeff White
President, The Stock Bandit, Inc.
Swing Trading & Day Trading Service

[tags]Stock Market, Day Trading, Stock Trading, Investing, Swing Trading[/tags]