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Paula Rodriguez

Keeping a trading journal is a smart strategy to enhance performance and gain confidence in executions

Success in forex trading requires a high level of planning and practice. To be consistently successful in trading, forex traders need to go through a comprehensive learning process. The best tool to guide and optimize a forex trader’s system is through the use of a trading journal. If you plan on becoming a successful trader through performance,trading journals can steer you faster towards a profitable career.

What is a trading journal?

A trading journal is one of the most effective tools for performance management. It is where you record and review daily trades for better output and for future reference. A journal can help you track progress as well as study mistakes made when entering or exiting a trade. In the long run, these reports can act as the foundation for better executions.

Benefits of having a trading journal:

The advantages of using a trading journal are valuable for trading efficiency. If consistently and diligently updated, your trading journal will be the key to favorable trades.

Builds careful framework for strategies

Successful trading relies on a profitable framework where you can develop your strategies. Through meticulous recording of relevant details, all calculations and moves made during the trade session can be properly examined. This framework can determine the success of your trades and can avoid future mishaps for a more ideal trading strategy.

Manages emotional triggers

A successful career in forex trading has a lot to do with psychology and mental state. Most forex traders experience certain emotion that could lead to unplanned actions. Having a trading journal allows you to take note of everything you felt and learned from a trade. This practice enables you to acknowledge your thoughts and emotional triggers behind every trade.

Defines your strengths and weaknesses

Documenting every trade can help define your strengths and weaknesses as a forex trader. Through these observations, you can be your own adviser and reinforce better trading skills. Journaling also let’s you be more accountable for any errors. By acknowledging what you do best or what needs more improvement, you can optimize your trading skills and incorporate them into your trading system.

Keeps you out of a questionable trade

Having trading journal is a great way to stick to a trading plan. Most traders tend to lose money in the forex market because of unplanned moves or impulsive trades. Taking note of these kinds of trades can keep your emotions and decisions in check and can help you become more aware of the possible consequences. After developing a sound trading plan, make use of a trading journal to keep you out of uncertain trades.

Encourages performance driven growth

The more analysis you make from your trading journal, the better you can adjust your performance for optimal trading. After analysis, examine your performance and plan how you can perform and profit during the next session. With the help of a trading journal, you can have a clear view of your overall performance. This boosts a forex trader’s growth as opposed to a trading career without evaluation.

What goes into an effective trading journal:

Much like a trading strategy, each forex trader will build their individual journal with information relevant to their style. Here are topics to consider including in your trading journal:


  1. Entry and exit date with forex pair
  2. Trade execution and order type
  3. Length of the trades
  4. Trade size and capital limits
  5. Results of the trade
  6. Profits or losses from the trade
  7. Market conditions of the day of trade
  8. Long term market analysis
  9. Logic for entry or exit trade with risks
  10. Ratio examinations from profits and successful trades


  1. Forex trading goals and motivation
  2. Trading philosophy and implementation
  3. Strength and weakness from the trade
  4. Thoughts and feelings toward the trade
  5. Trading errors with possible solutions
  6. Important and relevant self-review questions
  7. Future preparations and improvements
  8. Skills acquired or skills to be improved
  9. Emotional triggers when trading
  10. Performance level during the trade session

Trading journal to choose from:

A reliable trading system is sustained by constant assessment and improvement through the use of a great journal. There are different formats you may use depending on what your trading strategy needs out of a journal. Before investing in a trading journal, make sure to list down the features you need.

The 4X Journal

Price: Free trial, $9.95With the 4x Journal software, you can be sure your entries are safe from hackers since its locally stored in your computer and not on a website. A feature will allow you to be able to insert and store your recorded trade movies as well. You can also store strategies and notes for future reference. You will also be able to view this software from your iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

Trade Bench

Price: FreeTradeBench allows you to manage money and risk by calculating position sizing for you. You’ll be able to compare trade setups to make better decisions before making a trade. Profit & Loss charts can help you track your progress as a trader. You can also simulate trade strategies without any actual risk with paper trading. Learn from your previous trades using customizable reports and charts that provides you insight on where you are going and your areas of improvement.

Trade Bench

My FX Book

Price: FreeMyfxbook is an analytical tool that can improve your understanding of your trading habits inside, out. An updated dashboard helps you stay updated with markets. It’s also completely free with no installations or complicated configurations. If you’re looking for a money manager, the “Search Systems” feature can help you find a suitable one to help you get those returns. Still a beginner? Learn easily from successful traders by following them, striking up conversations, and tracking their public systems to improve your knowledge.


Price: Free,$29/mo, $49/moTradervue lets you share your trades with the trading community which can help you get useful feedback and learn from other great traders. You’ll be able to see detailed reports and statistics to make you really understand your trading performance. Advance Reports allows you to look at hundreds of possible trade combinations. This forex trading journal is also multi-currency and gives you a summary of the day, and trading performance recaps.


Trading Diary Pro

Price: One time fee $129 Trading Diary Pro has a variety of useful features. You can get reports like capital gains reports or leverage and total equity charts. It also helps you manage your portfolio with multiple views for trades, positions, and open positions. It also has great risk management as well as performance management features to help study your winning and losing trades.


Price: Free, $9.90/mo, $19.90/mo Trademetria helps you to track your progress and detect your trading habits so you know where you are making mistakes and how to fix them. It features several reports for daytraders and investors along with powerful metrics to improve your performance. Fully web based, you don't need any additional software to use and importing can be done automatically from Meta Trader.


Price: Free, $79, $149 Edgewonk’s unique metrics can help you see your setbacks immediately to help you improve faster. It’s the first fully tailor-made trading journal that fits any trader’s style. Its proprietary analytics can help you achieve best stop loss placement to avoid stop runs. Beginners can have a solid start to their trading career and avoid mistakes, while advanced traders can improve every component of their system even more.

Success with trading journals!

Through an effective trading journal, forex traders are able to hasten the path towards a more disciplined and profitable trading career. A successful trader not only examines each particular trade, but also the progression of their trading performance. Thoroughly keep track of your skills, emotional triggers and other aspects of trading you wish to measure and optimize through a trading journal.