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TheStreet Open House

#Digitalskeptic: How a Trader Coach Turns Emotions Into Profit

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Robin Dayne feels that surviving today's demented digital markets is not about trading algos, market methodologies or even what stock or bond you buy.

"It's about your emotions," Dayne said. She's a professional life coach with a specialty in improving the performance of financial traders. And Dayne has been talking with me for the past few weeks on how to get the most out of those who put their livelihoods on the line trading in financial markets.

"It's your scars that shape your trading. The big losses. The bets that took you out," she warned. "They are what get you stuck."

Dayne has developed her own street-smart sense and sensibility about the dark emotions that turn good trades bad. After a career as a ballet dancer and marketing executive for the since-vaporized Digital Equipment Corp., she's been both a part-time financial trader and a trader's coach since the mid-1980s. And three of the thousand-plus clients she's said she's worked with over the years confirmed to me she acts as a sort of a golf-swing-meets-life-coach for their trading.

"I decided to take the plunge and trade full time on my own," Laila Rhodes, a client of Dayne's told me in a call from Swindon, England. "And I could not have done it without Robin's help."

Fees run between $750 and $1,500 an hour -- which, by the way, I was stunned to learn is cheap for such services. Some trading pros I spoke with, who tellingly did not want it known that they use such trading support, say six-figure annual fees, plus a fat cut of the gross, is not unheard of for a trading coach.

The digital-age meat grinder
It's sadly not surprising that it does not take much for Dayne to fill me in on the emotional wear and tear traders face in today's grueling digital age.

"Everybody is feeling terrible pressure in the commoditization of trading," she said. "The number of trades. The amount of information traders are expected to manage." Traders today suffer from loneliness and an almost relentless pressure to perform from spouses and bosses.

And they're on an almost inhumanly short lease when it comes to mistakes.

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