I suppose there are a lot of answers to the question: Why Trade? Naturally, all of us have at least one answer in common and that is we trade to make money. That is the bottom line, isn't it? One of the things I like about trading is that it provides a great number of ways through various methods and strategies to add streams of income to our lives. I wrote about a number of them in my second book, "Smart Investors Money Machine." Most of us could stand an extra income stream or two or three, and for those who are willing to undertake the initial learning curve, trading can be an important way to fulfill that need or desire.
I have found, however, that trading can be much more than just a source of money. It can lead to freedoms that many, if not most, do not have. For example, I am writing this on the beautiful island of Kauai, a place far from home that I enjoy immensely. Even here, on the remotest spot on earth, I can trade. I am not restricted by geography in making my living. As long as I have an internet connection I can go to work and that, indeed, is a freedom I cherish.
In the early years after school, I was an employee and that meant I was beholden to and under the control of someone else at least during my working hours. Someone else decided when and where I would work and what I would do and when I would do it. As a trader for my own accounts, that is no longer the case and that is a wonderful freedom.
As I grew older, I became an employer myself and that status carried additional responsibilities with it. Directing employees, setting schedules, handling absences and vacations, paying salaries and benefits, at times paying employees when I couldn't pay myself, preparing and filing seemingly endless forms for federal, state, and local governments and their taxes and other bureaucratic demands all took time and restricted freedoms. Trading for a living removed those restrictions. I no longer need to work for my employees because I have none. Of course, I still have obligations to the governments to pay taxes and file those forms but the nature and extent of those requirements is much less burdensome and intrusive. Again, I am blessed with more freedom.
Trading has allowed more time with family and friends. It has enabled me to do more volunteer work and to help others. I don't mean to suggest it is the be all and end all for everyone, but I do mean to say that for those who are both drawn to it and who have a passion for it, it can provide a great quality of life. Of course, trading involves risk. It can involve a lot of risk, but when we think about it, doesn't everything?
I once owned a retail business. That was a form of trading where goods and services were traded for money. Retail is tough. The risks are enormous. Customers, competition, location, advertising, employees, licenses, insurance are just some of the issues the retail business person faces. The freedoms are few since the business owner is tied to the business both geographically and in terms of the consumption of time. The same is true with many other fields.
I have chosen freedom through trading and it is a passion. It is far from perfect but for me over more than a decade now it has provided an amazing quality of life. Make no mistake, it does require work, study, and devotion. The risks can be high, but so, too, can be the rewards.
by Bill Kraft, Editor
Copyright 2010, Makin' Hay, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
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