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Ep 73: My Trading Story & Personal Trading Evolution Over the Years

Hey this is Sasha Evdakov and thanks for joining me here at, where I share with you insight about trading, investing and the stock market.

In this video, what I’d like to do is share with you something a little bit different. It’s really about sharing my personal story.

The purpose or the reason behind sharing my story is a little bit different than why most people share their stories.

For me the point in sharing the story with you is really to share with you and show you that there’s multiple paths, multiple ways, multiple directions that you can get to, to get to trading, to get to your end goal, to get to the goal that you want to get to, there’s multiple levels to your life.

Follow your own path

And you don’t need to take the same approach that I’ve taken to get to where I’m at, to get to where you want to be, to get to your goals. Because I know that especially nowadays there’s a lot of these podcasting interviews or people that you start listening to, that say “hey this is the path I took”, and then you start wondering, “do I need to take the same path or approach? Do I need to take this and do that and do that to get to my destination?”

I want to break this myth down a little bit to share with you some of my journey and my struggles, so that way you can really just understand that you don’t have to take the same approach as everybody else.

In your life, just as in my life, there’s multiple levels to it. And all these things lead to you in a certain path or directions, they continue to move you forward, for some people forward I this way, and it moves them forward over here. For other people their vision of forward is this way, so it continues to move you in this direction.

Whatever you vision is, look at your life, there’s multiple levels and multiple stages to it, there’s multiple areas that eventually lead you in this path or direction.

The end result of course, if you want to get to a certain destination, if you want to get to this one point over here, the best approach is to do it in a straight line, this of course is ideal because the quickest distance between two points is a straight line.

However that isn’t always realistic. So we end up veering from one direction to the other, and so on and so forth.

Find your strengths

I’m going to share with you my story and maybe you get some insight about how it is that you can apply some of the experiences that you have, because the experiences that you have are not the experiences that I have, and you may have some really great strengths that you can use in your personal life to benefit you, whether that’s in trading, whether that’s in building a business. All these different things that you can use to propel you forward, whether you stick to trading or whether you don’t.

There’s multiple levels to your life that you can use to your benefit to propel you and move you forward, whether it’s this direction or this direction, and start looking at all those areas of your life and don’t get wrapped up into all those interviews and start thinking, “Oh, do I need to do this? Do I need to do that?” Look at the assets that you have available already, the skillsets, the experiences and start implementing things quickly.

Just do it

You’ll find that some of the things that I share through my journey here, real quickly, is that one of the reasons that allowed me to jump from one thing to the next thing to the next thing, was because I was implementing things very fast and very quick, it’s one of the reasons why I’ve written a handful of books, it’s one of the reasons why I’ve created a handful of video courses, because I just go out and just do it, go out and execute, that’s kind of my goal.

I know I’m probably not the fastest executer out there, there’s probably people that do it a lot better than I do it, but I just want to share the way that I do it, and my journey, my path so you get some insight for yourself on how is it that you can proceed and move forward.

To really explain the concept and how to show you, how to look at things multidimensionally, and how they personally apply to your personal life, I’m going to illustrate my life right here and my path of how I got into trading, investing and sharing ideas and insights now online by video, creating books and training courses.

That’s what I’m going to do, I’m going to use this board and maybe it’ll give you some insight to your own personal life and how it’s moving throughout time.

The beginning

My journey begins really in Russia, and this is where I was born. From Russia, when my mom got remarried, we then moved to the United States, this happened when I was right around 7 years old.

From there, a few years later go by and then I get my first computer, this was right when I was around 10 years old.

After that, this is where things start to move and accelerate, this is where things start to progress throughout my life, and you’ll start to really see how this all evolves here.

Trying new things

Basically, as you start moving through your life, there’s multiple levels and things that happen. When you’re a kid, you start trying new things, you might try Hokey, soccer, football, baseball, tennis, and for me, I tried a lot of those things, mostly tennis, mostly hokey, but more importantly the martial arts.

I got involved in the atrial arts, by this time I was already doing it for about a year, and at the same time, when I was working at the computer, of course I did the kid things, playing games and so forth, but later eventually it let me to doing graphic design.

What I did was actually sell logos on eBay. I sold those digital goods, at the time when you still could sell those digital goods, I was doing logos, I was doing stationaries, I was doing a lot of business cards, just doing a lot of design work. And from there, that’s where things continued to move and they continued to progress.

With the martial arts I went ahead and started doing more assisting, with the graphic design, I started getting more into websites and web design, and during this time I met one of my friend’s parents who was in the diamond industry, so he did a lot of diamond investing, diamond selling, and we created websites for him, and I created blogs as well in that industry.

All these things continued to move forward. The assisting allowed me to later, after college, get actually my own dojo, because it was either my instructor retiring and closing down the dojo or someone takes it over, so I took over the dojo, right around, I would say by the time I was 23 years old, I took over the dojo and did teaching and personal teaching right away for a few years over there.

And here at the same time when I was doing web design and blogs and businesses as I was going through college, what I ended up doing during college and slightly after is, I did photo and videography for weddings, and in part, this was because we had another mutual family friend who was in the wedding industry and web design, designing, all this creative work was something that I enjoyed, I enjoyed connecting with people and it allowed me to go outside from the computer area and meet people. I started doing photo, video and over here I was doing a lot of teaching.

You can slowly see how this is starting to move and work together. And start to really compose kind of what it is that I’m doing today.

My beginnings in the stock market

To really understand how the stock market plays a roll into all of this, we need to take a step back and take a look at when I got my computer.

At the time when we moved, my mom, she actually became a healthcare nurse, over in Russia she was an ophthalmologist, so she did a lot of medical work there, but a lot of things in the U.S were very different, specially the medicine, a lot of the bureaucracy that goes on here, the terms and all the licensing, a lot of them do not transfer over, or at least they didn’t for her.

Over here she became a private healthcare nurse. And then when she visited these patients, two or three years later, after a short little while, a lot of them would talk, what would they talk about? Well they would talk about the stock market, or they talked about their investments.

This is where she really got interested in the market; it was right around this time. And me over here getting my first computer, starting to do graphic design, I had the tech savviness, but she was interested in there, so what happened was, she actually ended up doing a lot of the choosing or the stock picking, and then I would actually be the executer, I would execute the trades for her.

Starting without experience

During this time, a lot of the things that we did was just day trading, it was very quick, there wasn’t a lot of patience, no strategy really evolved, just looking on the TV what’s going on, what’s moving, buying it, selling it later, a few days later and we started really lightly, I would say probably with less than $3000 to get things moving. Eventually those things grew.

After I became 16, 17, 18 years old, and as I started to evolve my business, my web design business, I started to have my own money, so when I had my own money, now I was able to have some spare cash and I wanted to also trade and invest.

What I did was actually I gave my mom some money and said “hey, can I trade this money? Or can I use this money in your account?” because I wasn’t 18 at the time to have my own account, so what I did was I just traded under her account with my money.

My first loss

This eventually lead to a lot of problems, a lot of issues with trading over time, because I still didn’t know what the heck I was doing, and it continued to move me forward, so I continued to learn and evolve in that stock market.

I continued to progress, and that’s where later, eventually I had a major, major loss. I believe it was $16000 or so, and I was in a Bio tech, and of course, Bio techs now that I know are crazy wild and they move around ridiculously, so you definitely want to stay away from Bio techs if you’re brand new.

At the time for me this was a very large loss, it was very emotional and there was a lot of problems that went along with that, because this was part of my business, all this funds, all this money was part of my business.

Learning about the stock market

Fortunately for me, all these blogs, all these websites that I was building at the time were growing, they were mine, and later I sold a large portion of this web business, I sold a large portion of the blogs for good amount of money and once I was able to sell that for a large amount right there, then I went back and continued to study the markets over this whole time period, I continued to learn, continued to study.

What is it that I did wrong? What is it that I’m struggling with? And then I took that money and I put it back into the stock market and continued to learn my butt off, I continued to study, it was during college, it was while I was teaching at the dojo, it was while I was doing photos and videos, I was definitely just educating myself as best as I could for probably from this time span, right around here, this was probably around 14 years old, continued to study and educate just for that next seven to ten years to put things into perspective, to get an understanding of what’s going on? What’s happening?

And of course for me, there was no mentorship, the learning curve was slow, and at the time here we were on dialogs, so there wasn’t YouTube back then, there wasn’t all these people posting free videos and education.

A lot of the things I got from education was either books was the first thing, the second thing was basically eBay, I purchased a lot of courses from there, and that’s where I got most of my knowledge and then the hard experience.

Moving fast

For me to move from these stages, from graphic design, to web design, to photos all of that was quick.

I got a computer, I said “let me do some graphics”, I learned some graphics, I post at a price, I went ahead and started selling those services, got a little bit of money, continued, so it’s kind of like a snowball effect, that continues to roll and roll and roll down the mountain.

Then I did web design, then from web design I said, “Why don’t I just get a camera? I created a website, let me do some photography and videography”, so I continued to do all these things, to where eventually we sold a lot of the business here, I sold a bunch of the blogs and one of those years, right before I was around 24, I made that year around $100,000 between selling the different blogs, between some of the businesses, and it allowed me to put all that money back into the stock market, into trading and into investing.

Follow your own process and do what you love

And it’s all a process, this whole thing is a process, and I’m sure for you in your life, you also have a process, you have multiple things that you’re doing.

The teaching now, really from the Dojo and the martial arts, allowed me, and it moves into this direction, where now I teach online, because I like teaching, I enjoy teaching, it’s something I’m good at, it’s something that I enjoy, I enjoy the connection.

The stock market, it’s the same thing, it’s something that I started years ago and I’m still enjoying that, that challenge, the way to push yourself to mentally continue to grow, to continue to train yourself. So all these things continued to move forward.

The website, now of course I actually have a team that helps me out with the web design and a lot of the design work, just because I don’t have the time or the luxury of the time, so I have a lot of people that actually help me out running and managing the website, I still answer the emails, but a lot of the people that run my website, do my website, it saves me time, but all of this, the website, the teaching online really works together to create what it is that I’m doing now.

I hope this really allows you to see how things move in multi dimensions, so over here here’s dimension one, here’s dimension two, the martial arts, the graphic design, and my mom, all of this works together to get to this end goal, to get to this destination.

It takes time

It wasn’t direct path from the computer all the way to stock trading, all these things worked together, and it didn’t take me three or four days to get there, it was seven to ten years to really start creating a little more consistency, to really start understanding how charts work, to really understand how volume works, to really be aware of myself, because that’s one of the hardest things, is just seeing yourself and being aware of “Hey, what’s going on? What’s happening? Why am I doing what I’m doing?”

And that’s just part of growing, part of being more mature and evolving, so as you personally evolve in being aware, in being honest with yourself, you also evolve in the market, and you’ll also evolve in trading.

Because the market is really just a reaction of how it is that you’re progressing, if you’re having losses, if you’re not emotionally disciplined, if you’re not focused, then there’s things that you personally need to work on.

Multiple dimensions

The point behind this whole story, the whole point behind this lesson was really to share with you that there’s multiple dimensions, there’s multiple areas, and the same thing for you, you’ll have multiple areas that go through in your life, that get you to a destination whether that’s trading, whether that’s creating a business, whatever it is, there’s multiple legs to it, and you never know what’s next around that corner.

My journey in trading

I’d like to dig a little bit deeper into my journey in trading specifically, so that way maybe it gives you some insight of the things that I studied, the things that worked well, maybe just my path in doing things and just give you some insight to where I am now and where I started.

Because that path is really different, and everybody is going to have a different path and maybe you’ll get to see some of the struggles and the problems and the detours that I took, and maybe it’ll help you avoid those detours and things like that.

For me, if we look at everybody’s time frame and the path that they move on, if we look at this as a time line, I had a lot of different little missteps here, and a lot of different areas that I went into and different things throughout my trading time frame.

All these little notches will be little areas or things that I went into, so from the first time where I got this introduction into trading, so this was the intro of when my mom said, “Hey, why don’t we try this thing?” That’s just a basic introduction, I didn’t really know what I was doing, so then we started putting on and placing trades, so placing the trade here at this point for me was all about watching the news, it was all about seeing what other people say, and putting on day trades. It was all just day trading.

We didn’t know what we were doing

I guess you could say we were looking for the fast money, it was the quick money, we didn’t know what the stock would do the next day, so we’re looking for day trade, we wanted to get in and out of position quick, because who knows what’s going to happen the next day?

I didn’t study the charts that much, I didn’t understand the charts, I didn’t’ understand what would make that sock go up or down. So she would do a lot of the picking, but I’m still trying to figure out what’s going on and what’s happening behind the stocks, so at the time we’re doing a lot of day trading and we’re placing trades.

A lot of the stocks that we traded were the same types of stocks, meaning, we became familiar with them, so I remember we traded AMD very heavily back when it was right around $10 and about $20 per share.

We’d buy it maybe on a down day and then sell it on an up day, so we’d hold it maybe for three days, sometimes five days, even if we made a dollar or 50 cents on that stock, it was a couple hundred dollars extra for you, for groceries or whatever.

This was right around my teenage years, so we’re getting started right here and we’re doing day trading, because we had no clue what we were doing.

Trading bigger

Later as time ticks, we get into a little bit of bigger stocks, you could say we started getting more comfortable, and this was right around where things grew. Remember, what the market’s been doing, how the market moves, it moves up, pulls back and then continues higher. And if you know from my courses, we have the A-B, B-C, C-D pattern. And this was a multiyear leg that the market moved to the upside.

Everybody wins in a bull market

And what happens in a bull market? Well, you could close your eyes, take a dart and throw it, and most of the things you’ll get are going to be winners, so that’s what happened. We were trading right here during this time frame and I guess you could say we thought we knew better.

Everybody is a winner in a bull market, any stock that you buy in a bull market, in a heavy bull market, if you buy a stock, most of those, 90% of those stocks are going to go up, so everybody is a genius during those times.

We started to go a little bit bigger and we started to go a little bit larger in the positions doing some trading, and at the time my mom started to grow some of her own computer savviness, so she started to execute her own trades, and then right around this region or time frame, since my business grew, I deposited and started my own account. This is where I started trading on my own.

Trading on my own

Of course, once you start trading on your own, you know you’re going to want to do it even better. Specially for me, I’m a real educational junky, what I wanted to do was really learn about what’s going on and what’s happening, so I did a lot of books, I studied and read a lot of books, DVDs, you could say VHS really at the time, because the DVDs came out slightly later.

And most of these things I bought off of eBay, back at the time or during this time there was not YouTube at the time, so just a lot of books, a lot of VHS, a lot of videos and then DVDs started to come out, so I got some of those as well, I just started to learn as much as I could.

And during this time, it’s really where I started to create my own portfolio, you could say, I started to really get in the business.

At the same time while I was doing graphic design, digital design, so you could say, I’m looking at my investments or I’m looking at my trades here about whatever, half hour or to an hour per day, and then I would also do graphic design though out most of the day.

Going to college

Then when I went to college right here, I went into marketing, which was not very helpful for me personally. I learned a lot of the marketing and the skillsets that I now use and apply today from other seminars, VHS, books, I find them to be much more helpful, but when I went to college here, there’s less time to focus on trading and investing, so I did do it a lot less.

I did do some studying from time to time on the trading, but for me personally I wanted to get out of college as quick as possible, so I took about 22 – 24 credit hours per term. If you’ve been to college or you know what that is, you’re basically at a very accelerated path, and what I did was I really condensed and compressed my learning and I got my four year degree in three years, and wrapped that up.

From then on, this is where I went more into selling my businesses and got more money. Once I got more money, I was able to trade larger.

This allowed me to play some of the bigger companies, buy more shares, trade more, also right around this same time frame, I got a little more interested in option trading.

I heard about options right around my early years, probably I would say a few years later, after getting started in trading, I probably heard about options, somewhere around here. But I didn’t really apply it until later; I didn’t really understand the concept.

Right around here, after college, during college, right around that time, I got more and more into options, I started trading options, dabbled with one or two contracts, tried to figure out, seeing what’s going on, what’s happening and then really I didn’t get more into options until much later, now doing a lot more spreads.

Getting better at trading

Right around this time, after I started getting to trade a little bit larger, I got a mentor and started looking at these social networks, I started to look at all these books that I read, all these VHS, these different platforms, getting and acquiring knowledge because I had these funds that I earned and acquire through my other businesses.

And that’s really when things started to take off, that’s really when I understood a lot more, I learned much more about technical analysis, putting all the puzzle pieces together, putting all of the volume, the price, the action, the behavior together, and this is really where things started to come together.

Finding what works for me

They started to really come together, you start putting the puzzle pieces together, and you start to understand what’s going on and what’s happening, and this is where I realized where the bigger money, and not just the bigger money, but also the more calmed trading, the more relaxed trading is in swing trading.

I’ve learned that this over the years seems to be a lot more peaceful for me, it’s more calming and it works for my personality.

Stop chasing

Day trading back here was all about attention and focus into the markets, it was all about buying that stock that day, selling it later, quick games, quick money, I was chasing after the money.

When you stop chasing something, it’s really interesting how those dynamics work, it’s kind of like when you like someone in great school, it’s like “oh, I really like this girl, I really hope she likes me back” and when you start chasing someone, it doesn’t really work out that well.

Instead, when you kind of play things off, and say “Oh, ok, I’m kind of interested” or you kind of brush things off, eventually those things come to you anyways. So the more you chase something, the faster that other thing goes, it’s kind of like chasing a rabbit or chasing a horse, the more that you chase after it, the quicker it’s going to go, because it’s having that fight or fly mechanism, it’s trying to run away.

The same thing here, when we’re chasing after the money on the day trades, I found that it didn’t work for me. Does that mean it won’t work for you? Absolutely not. There’s plenty of successful day traders out there that do fantastic and do well.

For me personally I enjoy swing trading after it registered in my mind that holding the stock for not just one day, or six and a half hours, but holding it for multiple days, holding it for weeks, this is where you really get that bigger money. This is where you get the bigger profits.

Swing trade is something I could relate to, and it gave me a lot more time freedom. I didn’t have to focus on screen as much, and this is what allowed me to also do a lot of books, and it allowed me to write my own books. It allowed me to teach, because I enjoyed teaching and connecting with people.

Keep learning

Similar to how I did it in the martial arts. So that’s what allowed me to propel forward, and then I continued to learn and evolve because I’m an educational junky, I love to learn and that’s what now continues to propel me to learn more about spreads and learn more about creating iron condors, calendars, and that’s really where I’m at with my trading, that’s really where I plan to focus on, it’s really the swing trading, and also the options spreads, and that’s my core, as far as trading goes, and that’s what I want to stick to.

Choose what works for your personality

I don’t really plan to trade Forex, that’s not my thing, doesn’t work for me, doesn’t resonate for me. Nothing like in terms of the future or the commodities, that’s not what I’m looking at.

For me, swing trading is my goal, and doing the spreads and it’s a nice, even pace. It’s a pace that I like, a pace that I can handle, it gives me the time freedom, whereas with day trading I found it to be a little bit too quick and my taste.

And will I do day trading from time to time? Absolutely. From time to time yes, I’ll do it. Depending on market conditions, depending on the volatility, depending on what’s going on and what’s happening in my own personal life, but you have to be focused with your day trading. You can’t really leave to go to the bathroom if you’re day trading.

Swing trading on the other hand, you can go out for lunch, you can make videos like these, it’s more relaxed for me, and it works for my style and my personality.

Find the quickest path to your destination

If I really boil things down into this time frame and give you some insight to what is it that you can do to accelerate your path from getting started to that current state or to the future, it’s to look at these little areas that you’re going to move in this other direction from.

You’re going to move into all these different areas and take thee little side paths, it’s kind of like if you’re going from one destination to another, the quickest distance between your starting point and your finishing point is that straight line. And many people ask me “shouldn’t you get certified in trading? Shouldn’t you have this certification?” And for this you need to take an exam.

And then for the next stage you need to do this x, y and z. So similar to getting a job in graphic design, or a job in any industry that you’re looking to get to.

For a digital design job, or for photography, it’s something I can relate to. Yes, of course they have certification packages and you could go to school, but as far as doing jobs, as far as doing the gigs, as far as making the completed projects and taking pictures at someone’s wedding, one of the best ways was really to be an apprentice or an assistant.

For me, I didn’t have that, I just went and got started with a camera, picked it up, did a few friends’ weddings and then continued to evolve that craft.

The quickest path right there was just to jump in and do it. If I had to go to school for three years to do photography and study it, yeah of course maybe it would make me a better photographer, but I’m moving away from the path of actually connecting to people.

Imagine you want to become a doctor

And I like to use the example of the exam thing in terms of the medical school, or the doctors. I know and understand that some people may be against what I say here, but let’s just pretend for a moment you’re trying to become a doctor in a tribe, in a village, in a jungle.

And one of the best ways to do that is to mentor with the medicine man; to mentor with the other doctor. And then when you’re 16, when you’re 18, when you’re 20 and that other doctor passes away, now you become the doctor. And you became and apprentice, but there is no exam that you have to go take, there’s no specific schooling, you’re mentoring with someone.

So the quickest distance to become that doctor or that MD really in that tribe was to go to the mentorship, the apprentice and learn with that other person.

Of course in society these days, due to law sues, due to a lot of government practices, so that way the government doesn’t have problems and malpractice things that happen, because a lot of people are out there to make a quick buck, so in order to regulate that industry, so we don’t have chaos in society, there’s a lot of now exams, there’s a lot of standards, and the same thing goes now in trading, the same thing goes now even in basic graphic design, there’s people that want some certifications.

I find that certain certifications, now when you go into certain degrees, they’re just looking for online certifications, or they’re looking for just a basic knowledge and understanding or may give you an understanding and knowledge test. Or to see what is it that you can actually do, rather than ask for your degree.

And that is just because things are moving much more rapidly in society and a lot slower in the educational systems.

But to long story short, you’re trying to really, if you’re trying to start over here and go all the way to this point here, the quickest distance is a straight line, it’s that mentorship program, and find out how you can cut out all this little excess, so if you can cut these little points out and not do them, you can get to your end destination faster.

Writing a book

For you, figure out that path, what is it that you need to get to where you want to be? If this is where you want to get to, if this is your end destination, figure out that distance, that path, as quick as possible.

If you’re writing an eBook, and you want to write a book, and you’re trying to get over here to get to this book area, some people they may say “well, I need to go get a college degree in writing, and then I need to talk to a publisher, and the I need to get an editor and then a graphic designer” and you start going through all these different areas, and then maybe saying, “well maybe I’ll do blog writing” to get to that end book.

When in fact, in reality, if you just open up Microsoft word, start typing and the go through the next stage and the next stage and the next stage, upload it to amazon, they take care of all that for you.

Cut out the unnecessary things

It makes things easier, it’s a direct path, so what is your direct path? And how quickly can you get there when it comes to your trading?

The quicker you can do that and cut out all these additional things, a lot quicker you’ll get to your end destination. And I’m not saying all these other things won’t be helpful.

If you jump around and did day trading, if you jump around and do an exam, if you’re trying to become a doctor, of course in a tribe it’s not going to help you, but if you jump around, there’s just a lot of additional things that you’ll do that you might not have to do.

All I’m trying to say is that look at your distance, and the quickest distance between these two points is a straight line, and the straighter you can go, instead of moving in different paths and getting away from that line, the less time you’ll waste, the lest money you’ll waste, and the less energy you’ll waste. It’ll be more direct and you’ll really hit it to when you want to get to.

Listen to the people that make sense to you

Thanks for sticking with me and reading my story. Start looking at things in multiple ways and perspectives, look at all the different tears and levels that you have personally in your own life and those experiences.

Some people you’ll be able to relate to, and if those are the right people then follow them and listen to them and continue moving forward. But the straightest path that you can get to get to your end goal, to get to your end destination, that is the path you want to take, and if someone tells you to go to this direction or go in that direction and it’s not right for you, then move on, move on to the next person.

The same thing with me. If some of the things that I say, that you can’t resonate with or you can’t relate to, maybe they just don’t’ make sense, there’s plenty of other people out there, there’s plenty of other people that maybe you can relate to. If you can relate to someone including myself, then move on, move on to the next thing and continue moving forward.

My goal for you is just for you to progress, for you to progress forward in the direction that you want to progress. And the quickest way that you can do that is in a straight line. And if someone’s telling you “you’ve got to do this, you’ve got to do that” and you don’t want to do that, it doesn’t mean you can’t get to that end destination by taking another path or approach.

Start looking at the bigger picture, everybody’s path is different, and just because you’re moving in a different path than someone else, don’t let it clutter your judgment, don’t let it cutter your goal, continue to focus, continue to focus forward, just like a horse with those blinders on, continue to move forward, and hone it on the target that you want to go to, and continue moving step by step.

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