There tends to be a lot of excitement when it comes to trading in general. Not just in terms of futures trading, but trading across all instruments. As a fairly new trader, I try to soak in as much knowledge as possible and I hope this lasts forever.
I know that from what I can gather a professional trader probably has a success rate of around 60%+. That's a pretty good win/loss ratio and I'm not there yet, but I've also come to realize one thing in particular. Winning percentage in my opinion is not all that important, but I know this may change down the line.
My losing trades have far outweighed my winning trades, but my profit and loss shows growth. I'm not a professional nor am I right more than 70% of the time, but I think this is important. My winning trades have been much larger than my losing trades. This is something that I've failed to really understand until you organized my thoughts.
What you do is based on your ability to make correct calls on the market, but I'm not to that level so I've had to rely on taking more on each trade that goes in my favor.
You rely on a fairly strict minimum requirement for taking profits of 14-16 ticks from what I've noticed. This covers at least a 2:1 to each trade you take. I also noticed that as you trade your first target is sometimes designated to eliminating "future"(no pun intended) trade mistakes. It's as if your last trade made up for or gave you the confidence on your next trade while placing your win:loss ratio where it needs to be.
I think what I've been doing as I learn to predict the market better is allowing me to place significant effort in maintaining a healthy balance of winning trades. I don't want to say that I actively search or have changed my approach to the trade itself, but as I'm in it I want to maximize when possible.
I like that you approach the current trade with an actual "future" outlook. Your profit objective is realistic and your stop is balanced according to the possibility of the next trade rather than what your previous trade did.
I'm not sure I have been able to figure out what you do to make a call on a trade, but as you say I'm not sure if it would actually help me down the line. It seems like you've been trading for a while and just have a better feel for the market than others.
I said before it is clear that you're fairly strict with your money management and it' been helping me to mimic this. My only fear is that your ability to place a trade is what keeps the standard deviation at bay. Most of my trades are of my own strategy and I'm continuing to try and create a better win to loss on my strategy. As of now I have noticed that truly looking to into the "future" or as you said it, "put myself in a better position than I was before" is working. I think this strategy would be hard to do with only 1 contract on without a higher correct trade percentage as you seem to posses. I hope this gives the other traders a good idea of how I'm trying to adapt my style and gain more confidence as I develop my own trading strategy.
FULL RISK DISCLOSURE: Futures trading contains substantial risk and is not for every investor. An investor could potentially lose all or more than the initial investment. Risk capital is money that can be lost without jeopardizing ones financial security or life style. Only risk capital should be used for trading and only those with sufficient risk capital should consider trading. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.