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The Disciplined Trader: Developing Winning Attitudes Hardcover – April 1, 1990

4.4 out of 5 stars 185 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


One of the first books to address the psychological nature of how successful traders think ~ The Disciplined Trader is an industry classic.  --- Global Publishing House

A groundbreaking work published in 1990 examining as to why most traders cannot raise their equity on a consistent basis, bringing the reader to practical conclusions to go about changing any limiting mindset. 
--Larry Pesavento - TradingTutor.com

Douglas helps traders neutralize the fear of losing into a mindset of winning ~ through this systematic approach to creating, instilling, and maintaining the mindset of a consistently successful trader. --- Beliefs Management Institute inc.

From the Author

In my book, the trader is taken through a step-by-step process to break through those queries ~ and begin to understand that their very thoughts may be limiting their ability to accumulate and succeed at trading.  This book can help any trader change the fear of losing into a winning attitude based on the step-by-step approach for learning the mental skills necessary for accumulating the wealth you desire on a consistent basis.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: New York Institute of Finance (April 16, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0132157578
  • ISBN-13: 978-0132157575
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.9 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The number one reason that I like The Disciplined Trader is that Mark Douglas has no formal training in psychology. Rather, Douglas was trained in the only classroom that matters-the battlefield of actual trading. Even though this book was published in 1990 and there have been a plethora of trading-psychology books published since then, Douglas' material stands out has an innovative classic. He just uses his own gift for seeing the mental shortcomings of the losing trader and spells out his own fresh insights on what we, as traders, need to do to experience real success in trading.
Douglas starts the book out from a perspective that many traders can identify with-crushing defeat. Humbling himself to the higher power that the market is and analyzing the formula for defeat, Douglas shows how he was able to reverse-engineer it to find the formula for success that many of the book's readers over the years have found useful in exorcising their own psychological demons.
Central to Douglas' thesis is that the elements of character that produce success in most of life's endeavors are completely different from those that will make you successful as a trader. To thrive in business or some professional career, you have to work hard to develop the skills that will allow you to be in control of your environment. To build a business empire, you have to be a great leader of people. To become a heart surgeon, you have to learn how to control your scalpel. To be a good mother, you have to know how to discipline your children.
But successful trading, says Douglas, is the process of yielding to the market and being in control only of yourself and the way you respond to changing market conditions.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First off let me assure you that Mark Douglas deserves all the generally positive reviews he's received for this book and for "Trading in the Zone." What Douglas has to share is essential, extremely valuable information for both aspiring and veteran traders alike. That said, stand warned that Mr. Douglas has quite a tedious writing style. He suffers (and thereby, so does the reader) from a particularly diffuse, circular, and repetitive style. He gives redundant a bad name. Here's a sample, you be the judge:

"Our committed expectations about the future will act as a force on our perception of market information to control its flow into our mental system in such a way as to avoid a confrontation with anything that doesn't conform with what we already believe is possible." Got that? Then this book is for you.

You don't have to worry about picking between The Disciplined Trader, and Trading in the Zone - Mr. Douglas is so repetitive that he essentially wrote the same book twice. Material from each book is either reprinted verbatim or repeated in a slightly different way in the other.

In fairness, Douglas is struggling to convey some very complex psychological concepts which don't easily distill down to catchy one-liners. Still, for all of his good things to say, Mr. Douglas would only benefit from a good editor.

Stick with it though - the keys to success are buried within. And then re-encrypted over and over.
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Format: Hardcover
As I read the reviews on this book, it seemed that there were two groups of reviewers: the group that just loved the book and the (small) group that hated it. After reading it, I found that the solution to this phenomenon was the following: to truly understand the book, you need: 1) To understand, that this book is not going to present you a clear trading plan or any technical knowledge whatsoever. It's about the mental aspects of trading. 2) A certain level of intellect (not that it is very hard to read, but I'm sure it is too difficult to understand for some). 3) (a lot of) trading experience. You can only appreciate and understand the book, if you can relate to the mental processes and experiences that are presented in this book.
Once these three conditions are satisfied, I'm sure you'll just LOVE this one.
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Format: Hardcover
...and it took it a while to open mine and understand that trading is not only about reading the numbers and mastering the fundamentals and technical aspects.

Generally I'm open to new ideas, even those which are contrary to my firm beliefs and convictions. I have to admit I didn't understand right away what this book was about after having read it only once. This is the kind of book you have to read over and over again to fully understand and appreciate its lessons, the discipline and psychological preparation for trading. Mr Douglas's work won't present you a clear trading plan, technical analysis wizardries and the like. It will rather help you master your fears and wrong beliefs and fight your negative emotions. Greed and fear have been for long my worst trading enemies (especially the first) and reading Mr Douglas's lessons has helped me a lot in fighting my negative psychological aspects.

I don't think one can quickly become an excellent trader after having read only one book, whether it's this or another one. I believe that one can get better and better in trading only step by step, and I firmly believe that reading this book more than once is one of the steps.
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