[Life Changer] 5 Most Important Lessons Trading Taught Me

What a ride…

Betfair Trading
Photos from last year

Just this morning I was sat pondering life in general.

I’ve found myself doing this more often of late. I think trading Betfair full-time for the last few years or so has changed my life dramatically. Dare I say it, I think I’ve become old before my time!

But it’s certainly not been a bad thing, here’s why…

Starting on Betfair…

When I first discovered Betfair trading I was just living life out, as many do in my opinion. I didn’t really know where I was going although knew I wanted to get on to bigger and better things. Starting a business was often on my mind although I was completely clueless… And then I found Betfair, having a Betfair account already it was all to easy to get started. Finding Adam Heathcote’s Blog at the time really made me focus too! As you could imagine.

Between the start and now though I’ve gone through some rapid changes, and made some huge leaps in progress. In terms of self-development as well as profits when trading. If it hadn’t been for trading and my obsession to succeed with it I’m sure I’d be none the wiser.

So here’s what I consider to be the 5 most important lessons Betfair trading has taught me:

  1. Listening & Learning

    By this I mean all aspects of learning, reading especially. Over the years it took me a while to realise its important to take the time to read and learn and listen to what others have to say. Instead of just talking, I heard a saying along the lines of “you can only learn what you already know from speaking”.

    Obviously for every book we read or person we meet there may be a few hundred pages of listening to do before we get the golden nugget we needed to then succeed. But by consistently listening and learning you’ll get there eventually! I now make time to read every single day. Previously I think maybe I’d read a book twice a year, and even then I wouldn’t finish it!! Now I try to get through at least one a week. My life’s so much richer for it. I don’t just mean financially, although it’s a big part of it. If I woke up broke tomorrow I’d still have all the knowledge I’ve acquired on the way. The way I see things now; the day you stop learning is the day you to exist…

  2. Self Awareness

    As I mentioned at the top of this post, early on I was pretty oblivious to the world going on around me. As many are, I was completely unaware of myself. I would often blame things on external situations or people when things didn’t go my way. But by being aware, which is one of the most life changing things the market has done for me. I am able to take complete responsibility for myself and each situation. The moment that happens the whole world changes! It seems a little scary at first, although is a positive thing once embraced. A saying by Confucius was “he who thinks he can and he who thinks he can’t are both usually right” . As soon as I become aware this is true, I realised I could change it.

  3. Possibilities & Motivation

    The former was probably one of my biggest problems, in general and in Betfair trading. I think it depends on the individual and the environment they’ve grown up in. For some it’s more of an obstacle than others. If you’ve come from a certain set of beliefs it would be considerably easier to deal with than another. Realising possibilities are actually truly endless is a pretty hard one to stomach, especially if you’ve been surrounded by certain views. The reality of the situation though is, if you want it, you can have it. Granted its easier to start from one position than another although, anything’s possible. In order to actually make that happen you’ll need to get motivated, possibly on a huge scale. Finding your own driving forces can help this no-end.

    Self limitation is most definitely the biggest killer of dreams, no doubts about it. And whatever happens, ignore the naysayers!! When trading Betfair its a problem from day one, as everyone on the outside looks in on it as a gambling problem. It’s how it’ll always be in the public’s eyes, if you trade bets you’re a mug punter, but if you trade shares you’re a millionaire. Obviously it’s quite possible in both.

  4. Structure & Routine

    This one wasn’t so obvious to me. When I first went full-time as a Betfair trader I would often roll out of bed late, lounge about in the morning if I was up even, trade for a few hours, finish early, hit the pub, get pretty wasted, stay out late and repeat… and to be honest that was a lot of fun for a while.

    If you look through previous blogs you’ll know I’m always partial to a drink, and a beer garden. I even went through a phase of having lots of time off, holidays and water-skiing (a friends boat). While all that was great fun, it didn’t do my trading and lifestyle a great deal of good. Once I read an article about Warren Buffet and how he said “successful people have successful habits” it left me reading up a bit more. Low and behold, after making a few changes and creating a proper structure and routine in my life. I was still enjoying myself and trading results exploded! I often feel a lot happier in myself too for a good routine. An easy change to make I’d highly advise even if you’re not looking to set ridiculous goals. And if you are, you’ll need to do that!

  5. Surroundings & People

    Pure and simple, the people you surround yourself around most are who you become. And that’s great as their your friends right? But if your 5 best mates are always down the local, are somewhat pessimistic or even bouncing from job to job and have no aspirations, how do you expect to get on? It’s a hard one as I don’t suggest binning your best buddies but if you want more and to progress you’ll need to surround yourself with some better influences, preferably those who have succeeded. It doesn’t have to be in the physical sense either, I regularly read books and watch YouTube clips from people I would like to be more like. They aren’t my ‘mates’ but by surrounding myself with them it has a positive impact on my thoughts and life. Ignoring certain surroundings that drag you down somewhat won’t help! It’s something that needs to be dealt with to progress… One thing I noticed having read Richard Branson’s book recently was that he was surrounded by people who constantly encouraged him in and what he did, no matter how crazy it was. Some of that may have been a fortunate situation, but everyone has a choice as to who they are surrounded by.

While I may have gone a bit of a ramble there, I really hope this post helps others progress forward even if it’s not in trading Betfair!

When I think about it, them points alone have the power to spin any situation around. But only when embraced. For me, these points alone have had a profound impact…

And remember…. it’s not all about money!

If you found this post useful or have anything to add please feel free to share and comment below! I know I wish I’d read it at some point earlier in life.

Related: Simple Horse Racing Strategies

13 thoughts on “[Life Changer] 5 Most Important Lessons Trading Taught Me

  1. Caan, great post as usual. I, like most people don’t read enough, so can you list the books you’ve read, starting with the one’s you found most useful.


    1. Very interesting. I am new to trading so I’m still learning but I have had some positive results. I too know people will comment on my trading so I tend not to tell anyone. I try to watch as much as I can on YouTube to learn more. The one thing I have learnt is practice makes perfect. Enjoy you blogs Caan.

  2. Good read. Also would be interested to know what books you have read which have enhanced your way of thinking on trading the markets et al
    Thanks Chris

  3. I’ve certainly noticed this change you mention throughout your blogs… nice one..!

    If you have not already done so check out – Maslow Hierarchy of Needs – old philosophy but still true…

  4. great post, Ive been full time for quite a few years now. Trading really messes your mind, I became completely different person and Im loving it! Agree 100% on this post!
    Maybe Im just a bit weird, but eastern philosophy books on Buddhism, Zen etc. helped me a lot more in trading than “trading manuals” :O

  5. HI Mr Caan
    I am still not understand much about drifter video in video pack. Seem you use fundamental analysis on the horse but I am not quite familiar with your British accent, then can you explain in simple way about handicap drifter

  6. Brilliant post and all too true, I’m afraid I’m still at the stage of rolling out of bed at stupid times and going out a bit too often!

    Thanks for the nuggets of info as usual.

  7. Caan, great article.

    Couldn’t agree more with the comments regarding Surroundings & People. I work in a school and we have a poster up that says “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”. If you look/observe people you realise just how true that quote is!

  8. Great post. I am new to Betfair trading. I have dabbled in matched betting for a few months – you are a great inspiration to me, I hope I make it like you have – keep up the great work!

  9. Dece Chuck. can’t wait til i post one of these a year or so down the line. that’s the plan anyway


  10. I think one aspect to consider is for training and get a routine this way you learn and it cost you nothing but your time and study and when you feel right dip your toes in the market and discover the edge this is myour plan to succeed giving my self a 2 month window on training is my objective and not blowing any money

  11. First time I’ve seen this post Caan and it’s fantastic. I can relate to so much of it on many levels, especially ‘surroundings & people’.
    Anyone that knows me will agree that I read an awful lot and rarely watch Tv.
    I’ve been reading books on all kinds of different topics recently such as philosophy and science and anything written by interesting thinkers that are outside the norm.
    I’ve been reading/listening to a lot of Alan Watts stuff too, there’s tons of it on YouTube.
    That may all sound a little deep but I can find so much in these subjects which I’m able to extract parts that are of benefit to me in trading relatable ways and life in general.
    I’ve just finished a book on the human brain and how it perceives reality. A VERY deep book but I took from that it an awareness that on a subconscious level I’m prone to confusing hopefulness with positivity. That’s a priceless realisation in trading terms.
    The most beneficial part of the book though was the brains perception of past, present & future. I’m sure anyone that trades at a serious level can see the value in reading an In depth study on the importance of the present and how it’s the only one that’s actually real and exists.

    I still love a drink with the lads but like yourself I just surround myself with things that benefit me and grow. I have zero time for negativity and just block it out.

    As usual I was only meant to write a couple of sentences and got carried away.
    Great post Caan, top stuff!

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