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Betfair Trading - Turning Your Obstacles Into Opportunities!

Betfair Trading - Turning Your Obstacles Into Opportunities!

Martin's picture
Mar 06, 2020

How often do you feel down in the dumps when you lose a trade or have a bad run during a Betfair trading session? Do you feel like giving it up completely because it is so soul destroying?


If so you are not alone! Most people will naturally feel this way and as humans we have evolved to fear and worry about anything negative that happens to us, regardless of whether it is really of any serious danger.. 


The good news? These feelings are just ‘perceptions’, our reactions to events are determined not by the event itself but by us, by our own minds, it is our choice how to feel. 


I have been reading an outstanding book this week called: 


The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday


This book is essentially an example of how to change your mindset to have success. Particularly at times when the world seems to be against you and others would falter or give up. This in itself is so relevant to trading that I was eager to learn how to change my mindset in this way. So this post is based on the ideas from the book and I have applied them to Betfair trading. 


One of the hardest things to do is to see a huge obstacle in front of you in life and see it not as a burden but rather as an opportunity. Imagine something terrible that has happened to you in life, how did it make you feel? Was there an opportunity to use it and turn it into a positive, perhaps life altering event?


I’ll give an example of something bad that happened to me, when I was 11 years old I broke my arm hurdling in athletics. Granted not exactly a great world tragedy but it was very painful nonetheless, the bone came through the skin and I had to have an emergency operation that same day. 


Funnily enough, I took it all in my stride, it didn’t really bother me. I think sometimes that’s the beauty of being a kid, you don’t always get bogged down in any great worries or fears. I was enjoying life too much for a minor injury to worry me. My time away from the track just made me eager to return early and still compete that same season, I became a better athlete and trained harder as a result of the injury, instead or derailing me it motivated me.  


The reason I chose this example is I don’t think I would react the same way now. I think I would be scared of the pain, scared of not being able to work and earn money for a while and more nervous of having to be poked, prodded and operated on in hospital. 


So what happened to me between the ages of 11 and being in my 30’s? Why do I have more anxiety and fear about things that I didn’t care about when I was a kid?


The answer is partly this in my view - I think we get taught as adults that we constantly have everything to lose and that we have to fear this as much as possible to stop it happening.


Some examples of common problems and our natural overreactions: 


  • If we lost our job - it would be the end of our career

  • If we went bankrupt - we would live on the street 

  • if we get severely injured - well we may as well be dead!


However, the truth is that all three of those potentially life changing things could happen to us, even at once, and the reality is that the consequences we fear or imagine are unlikely to actually happen. In a lot of ways they are actually irrational thoughts in our heads. 


The truth is that every obstacle is a chance for self-improvement. We will all have plenty of obstacles in our lives, fair and unfair. What matters most is how we view them, our reaction to them and how we can use them as opportunities for learning. We have a choice how we respond to any situation, we decide whether we will break or whether we will resist them.


Here is a truth you should take away with you today: 


‘We are in complete control of our perceptions.’ Us, you and me. Nobody else gets to control our minds!


So let’s try and apply this truth to the above problems and see how we can resolve or potentially use them to our advantage.


  1. Losing Your Job - This can be a great opportunity to learn another career or get another job in the same career. It’s the chance to try something new, and have an adventure when doing so. Always wanted to be a pro sports trader on Betfair? Well now you have been given a little more time to learn and try it out!

  2. Going Bankrupt - Six, that is right SIX of Donald Trump’s companies have filed for bankruptcy! The end of the world? Hardly, he is a President of the United States of America, I guess it spurred him on!

  3. Loss of health - This is a ticking time bomb that will hit us all one day but as we are still here, I’m guessing things could be a lot worse. Think of weight problems for example, what a great opportunity to try new healthy foods or learn to cook healthy meals rather than get take out. This may not sound like much fun but it actually is. If I became terminally ill, I sure as hell like to think I would try to make the best of my last days here on earth. Some companies like ‘Make a Wish’ literally exist for this positive purpose in a desperate situation.


The point is that although some of my examples may sound a bit flippant, you can view everything that happens in a more positive light, but, it is your choice. 


So let’s bring this back to trading, how does an obstacle benefit my trading on Betfair in anyway? 


Well a mistake that leads to a poor trade can become a good opportunity for learning. Did you miss an opportunity to ‘green-up’ because you were trying to trade too many markets? Well, let’s cut those markets down! In this example, you have instantly become a better trader with one simple piece of feedback. 


Only the rational and disciplined mind can profit from trading in the long term. Placing speculative bets leads to disaster. Ignore the ‘mad crowd’ and the masses who generally lose on Betfair. Want to be one of the winners? Then you have to react in the opposite way to them. Try to resist the excitement of thinking an outcome is a certainty and backing something even though it is heavy odds on. Try to think like the shrewd investor, is there actually a chance the market is over-reacting with such low odds, can I take advantage of this value?


All great investors and traders resist impulsiveness in favour of cold hard common sense. You won’t ever see Ryan, Richard Futter or myself placing a trade just for the sake of it. If the opportunity is not there then we will leave it well alone. We aren’t gamblers in the traditional sense of the word, we are investors who have only one interest - seeking out true value and making money trading on Betfair.


If you get off to a tough start on your Betfair trading journey don’t let it knock you out. See it as an opportunity to learn from your errors and grow as a trader. A losing run is not an unsalvageable misfortune but rather the gift of an education, a chance for self-improvement and an example of what not to do, which ultimately tells you the opposite is what you should do!


I will leave you with this:


Richard Futter is the greatest trader I know. He has been making a consistent living as a Betfair trader since he left his successful job as a local TV presenter in 2004. One thing he has always said to me resonates with what I have said here today:


‘Never be afraid to go against the crowd, those are often the trades you will win and make a lot of money from.’


The crowd will react negatively and trade from a place of fear and anxiety, when we react in the opposite way we will truly be a level above them and we should be profitable!


Hope this has helped.


If you need any help remember to use the private coaching section of our forum, so many people are doing that at the moment and that is brilliant, find it here:


Speak to you again next week!