Things You Do Not Want to Do in the Desert (of trading?)

I went to the Arizona desert one time on a very educational photography trip with one of my daughters (this was with Summer, not Spring whom you all know well), and wanted to share some of the education as it can definitely be applied to trading. I wanted to condense what I learned into three major points and then apply them to trading.

Now, before I get into the “meat” of the education, I want you to understand something about me.

I have a very high pain threshold.

I know a lot of guys like to brag about having high pain thresholds when they

really don’t, so just to give you an example of how high my pain threshold really is, 

I watched my wife give birth to my 5 children (not all at once of course).  

Let me tell you, not an easy thing to go through.  

There was another time when I jammed my finger playing basketball and was on a morphine drip for only 2-days.

So as you can see, when it comes to pain, bring it on.
That’s how I roll.


…we were driving in the desert on our way to a specific location to take some dramatic photos when a few things in the desert caught our eye.
We decided to take a side road about 1/2 mile off the highway and just jump out, grab a
few quick shots and be on our way.
We probably did not go 30 feet from the vehicle.  

I was shooting, she was shooting, life was good.  

I decided to take a close up macro shot of an object and decided to walk back to the vehicle and grab my tripod.
I am fairly sure footed with good balance, but as I was stepping on a slanted rock with my right foot, my flip flop held steadybut my foot slid diagonally off the flip flop.

Education Tip Number One…

NEVER ever, and I do mean ever, wear flip flops while strolling through the desert.

I must warn you, the following paragraphs contain graphic descriptions that may not be suitable for children under 2.

When my foot slid forward diagonally off the flip flop, it slid, full weight, into what I have named the tennis ball cactus from hell.  It is simply a round ball about the size of a tennis ball (or at least it was the size of a tennis ball before I gave it a good smashing), with barbs sticking out of it the size of rail road spikes.

Now, if you have never stepped on a cactus before, let me try to put into words what it felt like.

As the 1,232 barbs (my daughter says it was more like 40 or 50…but she never has been good with numbers) thrust into my pinky toe, the two toes that used to keep my pinky toe company, and the small ball of my foot, a shooting pain, almost like an electrical shock went streaking up my right leg, through my spine and into my head, subsequently causing my eyeballs to pop out of their sockets, only it happened a lot faster than it took to read.

But that wasn’t the bad part.

The bad part was when I jerked my foot up, causing it to come back into the flip flop, where the newly impaled cactus then jammed itself securely between my foot and the flip flop.

I could not take the flip flop off without causing an enormous amount of additional pain.

After about a minute of agonizing, I finally took a sizable stick and leveraged it between the my foot and the tennis ball cactus from hell…and yanked suddenly.

In one fell swoop, the tennis ball cactus from hell and my flip flop shot off my foot, leaving about 30 barbs behind.

That’s when the pain really got going good.

My daughter, who remained calm the entire time, found my eyeballs, handed them to me and then started pulling the barbs out one by one.

After the second barb and 10 freaking minutes later, we decided that she would need players to do the job.

Fortunately, I had a pair in the vehicle and she began to wield them like a skilled surgeon.

She would grab one, yank really hard and then say “ew, that one is bleeding a lot”…

I’m not sure what it is about those cactus barbs…they go ineasy and do NOT want to come out.

Pulling them out was definitely more painful.

But, 20 minutes later, sprawled out right there in the middle of the desert, she finally pulled outall but one.

It broke off and I got to carry that one around with me for a while.

There are many lessons that can be learned from this experience
and applied to trading.

  • Being Overly Confident Might Cause You To Not See The Risks All Around You
  • When That Risk Becomes a Reality, It Hurts.
  • Picking Up The Pieces is Just as Painful As The Initial Blow If Not More

Your lesson for today is to take this story and make application to your trading.

If you are risking too much, STOP.

If you do not know your risk potential, Re-evaluate your approach.

Dig into your own trading plan and make the changes necessary to avoid horribly painful situations.

And that is the truth about some things other than trading that can be applied to trading (but mainly, don’t wear flip flops in the desert).

And that is the Truth About Trading.

Change Your Trading, Change Your Life

Ryan Jones

SmartTrading Founder

Watch this video discussing low-risk, high-probability trades!

When you do, I am going to GIVE YOU a detailed, easy-to-follow trading plan designed to grow a $5,000 account into as much as $1,364,000 over the next 5-years using trades just like the one you see in the video.