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Trading Post-surgery: A Lesson in Mind and Markets

By Andrew Aziz  |  
Andrew's Newsletter  |  
Dec 7, 2023

Dear Traders,

Our brains guide our actions and decisions. When your mind is cloudy and unclear, making sound choices becomes challenging. This is a fundamental rule of life. As some of you may know, I underwent surgery in Colombia over the weekend, requiring six hours of anesthesia and potent painkillers. I spent Saturday night in the hospital and recovered at my Airbnb on Sunday.

However, I decided to trade on Monday, not realizing that my mind was still foggy, leading to one of the worst trading days of my life with a loss of over $22,000. If you haven’t seen my recap yet, please watch it here.

One of our members, Nathan, a medical professional, noticed that something was wrong with me as he watched me trade live on Monday. He sensed that I wasn’t my usual self but had no knowledge of my recent surgery. After learning about it, he called me and advised me to refrain from making significant financial decisions or taking on big responsibilities so soon after such a serious surgery.

This is what he wrote me:

“I could tell that the anesthesia was affecting you. You weren’t yourself today and it gave me a lot of anxiety. I’m a big empath and very sensitive to the emotions and feelings of people I care about. It appeared to me they had given you Versed or straight Morphine during surgery and should have directed you to not make ANY cognitive or financial decisions for at least 3-4 days after surgery. Once your opioid receptors are saturated it takes time for them to rebalance and during that time you can still be in a “high”. It’s like being really drunk where your inhibitions are blocked and you will take risks you wouldn’t normally. I was really impressed that you walked away, regrouped and then recovered. But it gave me a lot of anxiety when you mentioned the anesthesia was still affecting you.”

I now understand the wisdom in his words.

Our brains serve as the command centers of our bodies, responsible for every thought, action, and emotion. They are like the control panels of a highly complex machine, requiring regular maintenance and care. We should avoid trading after a major surgery, excessive alcohol consumption, or when influenced by external factors. Yesterday’s experience served as a perfect example of this.

Today’s trading was more successful, and I had a profitable trade on MARA. You’ve likely noticed the volatile time we are at for cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin over $40,000. When cryptocurrencies are on the move, some traders, like me, prefer to trade stocks closely tied to the crypto sector, such as MARA (Marathon Digital Holdings) or RIOT (Riot Blockchain). While I haven’t delved into cryptocurrency trading myself, I have benefited from the volatility by trading related sectors and ETFs. It’s essential to remember that, like cryptocurrencies, these stocks can be rollercoasters.

To see how we traded in the chatroom and gain insights, please watch my recap for today here.

Cryptocurrencies are akin to the Wild West in my opinion. The President of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, manages a sovereign fund of approximately $130 million and buys crypto dips from his iPhone. Recently, he shared that he has finally reached the breakeven point and has no plans to sell. Imagine the situation when his fund was down nearly 60% as Bitcoin dropped below $18,000.

The image above displays his trades and entries. As you can see, he averaged down until his breakeven point reached around $40,000. While it’s entertaining to watch him, traders understand that averaging down on losing positions is one of the worst mistakes one can make.

It’s unsettling to have an entire country’s fund controlled by one person who tweets about trading from his phone, even in the bathroom. Bukele is not a typical president; when Bitcoin declined, he changed his profile icon to that of a degen McDonald’s worker trader and gambler.

To your success,