"Man was born to be rich, or grow rich by use of his faculties, by the union of thought with nature. Property is an intellectual production. The game requires coolness, right reasoning, promptness, and patience in the players." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson Mr. Emerson's succulent guide to financial success is also a very good summary of ingredients needed for success in the stock market. Cool, calm logic, timely action and patience are the keys. Many traders possess great reasoning skills and are very adept at moving aggressively but have a difficult time when it comes to patience, especially in the current market environment. To many market participants, patience seems contrary to what successful traders do. The perception is that successful traders are in constant motion: They are actively buying and selling and if they aren't it means they have failed. Good traders should be finding a constant supply of opportunities and making big bold moves on a regular basis. Maybe to some extent, but it depends a great deal on your particular style. An intraday trader with a very short time frame obviously shouldn't cultivate the same level of patience as someone with a time frame of days or weeks. Those with a short bias need to wait out market rallies while those with a long bias need to wait out market pullbacks. What makes the market particularly difficult is that effective trading requires both quick, decisive action as well as patience. We have to be prepared to sit and wait for long stretches and then act quickly and aggressively when the time is right. It can be a very hard transition to make. Those who are adept at staying patient often have a hard time acting boldly, and vice versa.