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Nial Fuller

Professional Trader, Author & Coach

The Lazy Man’s Guide to Forex Trading; Let the Market Do the ‘Work’

HammockWhen we think of a “lazy person” we typically imagine someone laying around at home watching TV on the sofa with a bag of potato chips in one hand and a cheap beer in the other. One thing that we almost never associate with a lazy person is success or wealth; in fact we usually imagine them as being poor, dirty and disorganized. However, today I am going to challenge these beliefs because I feel that in our modern society there’s an over-emphasis on doing “more” and being some workaholic control freak who simply lives for their job and little else.

The word “lazy” is often associated with negativity in most social circles, but depending on what you’re being lazy about, it can actually be a good thing. Saying someone is a “lazy person” is usually a gross generalization. You could be an athlete or a super fitness freak, but you might be lazy when it comes to investing, money and business; many people are lazy in some areas of life and the exact opposite in others. There’s nothing wrong with this, and it’s actually quite normal to be lazy at some things in your life. When it comes to trading or investing, it could even be said that being “lazy” or relaxed can actually increase your chances of success.

The lazy trader concept I am using for today’s lesson is simply a metaphor for trading in a manner that is relaxed and unemotional, but the theory behind it makes sense. Remember, I have been doing this for over 10 years and I have witnessed thousands of traders and the different ways they trade; I know what attributes make good traders and being lazy is probably in the top 5 essential attributes in my opinion. Relaxed, stress-free personalities tend to make more money in trading and investing, whereas the serious over-thinkers and obsessively dedicated personalities tend to lose!!!

Lazy traders aren’t glued to their charts all the time

The best traders I know don’t bother analyzing the market or watching their charts all the time. They know they can’t change where the market is headed, so they just set orders/alerts when certain prices are reached or they look at the market in the morning and in the evening briefly. Successful traders take a relaxed and no-stress approach.

The most profitable traders and investors don’t addictively watch their positions all night while they should be sleeping. They make a decision and let the market determine the outcome without interruption or interference. Some might call this “lazy”, I call it “smart” because it works and it’s the foundation of the set and forget mentality that I believe in.

To be a good trader, we almost have to do the opposite of everything that feels “right”. It feels “right” to sit there and watch the markets and watch your trades tick away. But this really accomplishes nothing except making you more likely to do something stupid like enter another position, close your position before it really gets moving, etc. It seems like you need to sit there and “analyze” the market for a long time, and especially after you enter a trade, but you don’t need to do this, actually you really need to do the opposite. Just leave your computer, be “lazy” about your trades and forget about them for a while, this way you really give your trading edge a fair shot to play out.

Lazy traders have bigger winners

How many times have you entered a valid trade setup from the daily chart time frame and then began watching the 4 hour or 1 hour chart after your trade was live? I’ll bet you’ve done this a lot, and I’ll bet it’s led to more than a few occasions where you exited that perfectly good daily chart setup only because you saw the market moving against you on the intra-day charts.

Lazy traders don’t sit there and watch their trades after they are live, thus they are not looking at every up and down move during the intraday session, and thus they eliminate most of the temptation to interfere with their trades. This leads to bigger winners and a higher overall risk reward return over the long run. The reason is simply because they are not being influenced and hypnotized by the short-term fluctuations in price that tend to cause traders to make emotional trading errors. The lazy trader is down at the beach having a  beer or spending time with his family, while the obsessed trader is crouched over his computer panicking and stressing over his open positions…which one do you think is more likely to make a stupid emotional trading mistake?

The Lazy trader goes to sleep whilst the obsessed trader is sleep deprived

Lazy traders are relaxed and calm; they get a good night’s sleep and let the market do its thing. When they wake up in the morning they turn on the computer and look at the overnight price action for a few minutes and then carry on with their lives.

The obsessed coffee-addicted trading junkie is sleep deprived because he has been up watching the market until 4a.m. crouched over his trading terminal…he is ultimately creating his own failure by taking trading way too seriously and over thinking every single decision. The longer you sit there and “think” about the markets and your trades, the more likely you are to make a stupid / emotional trading mistake.

Lazy traders develop confidence in their trading ability

brainOne of the things that I see from the emails I get every day is that there are basically two types of traders; those traders who are happy trading around their current job and schedule and those who look at trading as their only option for income and put all their eggs in the trading basket right from the start. What this means is that one trader is starting from a point of no pressure or emotion and another trader is already putting pressure and emotion into the mix before they even make their first trade.

Putting pressure on yourself to make a lot of money from your trading right out of the gate is going to flood your mind and body with emotion and adrenaline which is naturally going to cause you to do stupid things like over-trading and over-leveraging your account. Whereas, if you take a lazy trader approach and just check the market before and after work each day, you will slowly but surely gain confidence and also have better longer-term results since you will have largely eliminated emotion from the mix.

The “true” market picture can easily be seen after analyzing the price action on the charts for just a few minutes at the close of each trading session. (end of day chart analysis).  However, when obsessed traders sit there and continue to analyze the market, they inherently make up all kinds of things that “could” happen and they manifest patterns and trade setups that are nothing more than low-probability random price movements. Thus, trading in this obsessive manner works to tear down your confidence as a trader and just makes you frazzled and frustrated in the end. The lazy trader develops a better “gut feel” for the market because he is just looking at what’s there and then moving on, rather than sitting there manifesting different combinations of things that could happen.

Lazy traders develop positive trading habits

The lazy trader flicks open a EURUSD chart, looks for something obvious to trade and either trades or passes on the opportunity. He is not worried about news events or what the media is saying; he is not over-thinking it and he does not care if he enters a trade or not. Trading in this manner develops positive trading habits because you are reinforcing a minimalist trading approach.

I am a minimalist myself and I keep things simple and clean when it comes to trading. I can’t stand being stressed or worried about what the market is doing, I can’t stand the thought of analyzing the market for hours on end, or anything for that matter. I don’t listen to financial news and I don’t over-think what I am doing in the market or in life. I would much rather be relaxing reading a book/magazine or watching a movie or entertaining my 3 year old son.

In fact, I would much prefer to do ANYTHING else but stress out about a trade or a trading decision.

It is often the case that the more serious and obsessed traders typically develop addictive and self-destructive personalities, or they already have these personalities when they start trading and they aren’t willing to change. They actually believe that they can influence or change what the market is going to do by focusing almost their whole life on the markets; however this couldn’t be further from the truth!

The key to lazy trading

Now that we’ve discussed a lot about why being a “lazy trader” can improve your trading, let’s talk about how to actually become a lazy trader…

Simply put, you have to genuinely not care about the outcome of any one trade and you have to eliminate the “itch” to be in the market all the time. The easiest way to really not care if you’re in the market or about the outcome of any one trade is to be sure you are totally OK with the money you are risking per trade and the money you have risked in your trading account. You should only be risking an amount that allows you to forget about the trade, when traders start risking more than they are comfortable with losing per trade they put themselves at a very high risk of becoming over-attached to their trades…and this is not the lazy trader approach, this is the obsessive / addictive approach that never works.

You also have to be confident in your trading edge and your ability to trade it. If you don’t really have a trading strategy or you don’t know what you’re doing, you aren’t going to be confident enough to just glance at the market a couple times a day briefly. Instead, you’re going to sit there for hours trying to manifest a signal simply because you aren’t really sure what you’re looking for in the markets. So, be sure you’ve mastered an effective trading edge like price action strategies and that you fully know how to trade it.

Lazy = better trading and a better life

LazytraderMe and thousands of my followers who have made the transition to my “keep it simple and minimalist trading philosophy, know firsthand its immense power. Not only do trading results improve by adopting the “lazy man” trading attitude…our life ultimately becomes less stressed and less cluttered with counter-productive thoughts, and then doors start opening in all areas.

Whether it’s business, trading, relationships or life in general, we often destroy them by trying too hard, doing too much, over-thinking, over-analyzing and simply stressing ourselves or others to death.

Do yourself a favor…start being a lazy trader! If you’re already a lazy trader, good for you! To the people who are not yet converted to “lazy trading tactics”… you need to stop trying so hard, relax and enjoy your life and you may find your trading will actually improve, not to mention your happiness level. It does not have to just be about trading, if you’re in business try removing the stress and stop thinking so much!

Don’t lock yourself in the office or in your trading room and think that the more hours you put in the better the outcome will be, that kind of thinking will destroy you, blow up your trading account and possibly destroy your relationships with others. Your wife/partner will probably notice a huge change in your personality if you make the commitment to be more relaxed.

If anything I have discussed in today’s article has turned on a light bulb in your head…I encourage you to pursue a change in your trading & life. It’s time to undo the damage you have already caused yourself and turn over a new leaf. Some people never wake up to the idea that they should be living a stress-free, relaxed and “lazier” trading life. Hopefully I have “saved” some of you today!

To learn more about my lazy-man’s trading tactics and how to trade stress free and get your life back…do yourself a favor and check out my price action trading course, it’s bound to help.

Good trading, Nial Fuller

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Nial Fuller

About Nial Fuller

is a Professional Trader, Investor & Author who is considered ‘The Authority’ on Price Action Trading. His blog is read by over 200,000+ followers and he has taught 25,000+ students since 2008. In 2016, Nial won the Million Dollar Trader Competition. Checkout Nial's Professional Trading Course here.
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  1. Благодарность

    Thanks Mr. Nial! super article! you very strongly help to develop the correct thinking

  2. Bongani Muthisi

    You have successfully closed my ears to my former mentors, and launched me on a path that enables me to often trade in the zone. Lol, I look back to the days I and few friends began trading, and I laugh at myself. We had it all in place, a working office, working hours (which session are we going to trade) and so forth, however, now I see it was all an ingredient to fail at trading. Ever since I came across your site, and started baptizing myself in your thinking patterns about trading – I have turned a new leaf. Thank you sir. Yours in Trading – “Lazy Trader.” South Africa

  3. Setimba Cathy

    Thanks so much for the info.

  4. Thabo Ntshisi

    Good Sunday Nial

    Thank you again for a good lessons of Lazy method, as I indicated last time that am still on my demo account, the lessons would definitely help me to do well on my trading.

    Thabo Ntshisi RSA

  5. Leon

    Thank you so much i think it will change my life

  6. lordsbe

    great analysis of typical trading behavoiurs of new traders and even older ones who have amounted to little profit making due to unecessary anxiety,your system teaches havin faith in our strategy and not feeling bad, it frees us for greater appreciarion of life of which trading is a part of,. As an athlete i liken worrying to tightening your body say shoulders while runing long distane races,the more tense you are the less efficient u render yourself by being limber and fast.thanx 4 ur simple way of trading.unconventional

  7. Christian

    Thank you Nial, appreciate your article.

  8. carlos pedraza

    Thanks Nail for share your experiences and save help people like me to avoid some mistakes.

  9. Eve

    Thanks, it`s all true. That is the key for a long term success!

  10. asmadi hasan

    Thank you (terima kasih)

  11. Chalis

    Great article. Thank you for your sharing.

  12. Norman

    Hi Nial, another briliant article of you,,,,,,,,,,,,,,thanks as always for the valuable sharing

  13. Joseph Schueller

    I truly have realized that this is true. The thing is that many traders can’t sit back and just let their 2:1 risk/reward ratio play out in the long run. By sitting back, and letting the 2:1 (or even 3:1) ratio play out, we are actually giving our edge a chance at being profitable.

  14. bambang sudarto

    Being lazy trader does’t mean to be lazy person right? We always aware with what fundamental informatons that will change the way we trade (our setup)..

  15. slivester

    great…great article….u r the greaters guruh………..thousand thanks nial……

  16. Clayton

    Nial I had to leave a comment here about this article for me was just a wake up call, no doubt about it / one of the best articles I have ever read on your website sometimes being young we want to get things done and make money faster than older people but some of our generation including me don’t realise sometimes how difficult it is to do things right and when you realise that with RUSH we never ever achieve PERFECTION and we just make things worse.
    Definitely for me was a big help and that could be silly but just added something for the rest of my life
    Thanks for the article and keep going I`am a forex trader and study everyday and I know it is not easy and I know many other websites but without a doubt yours for me is one of the best
    Cheers and I love Australia lol I call it my second home kkk Right on Downunder shout out from Brazil lol

  17. Honza

    Nial, thank you for the article. I realised again what is really important.

  18. Michal

    Great artical Nial, many thanks

    Greetings from lazy Mike :)


    Hi Nial,

    The way you said in this article makes me calm and relax too
    Its true I’ve tried it after one month I can see the difference, even though not much at least 10% differences appeared.

    Thanks Nial

  20. Andy

    Nial, I have to say this is 100% spot on. I have been trading for circa 4 years now. I used to trade smaller timeframes for 4 hours a day with end of day trading as an add on. For over 18 months now I have been end of day only, and have made more money in both percentage and money terms since doing so. This year I’ve just gone through 150% growth on capital employing my own price action trading setups on an end of day basis. I travel around the world and live off my trading income, and I am positive that it is this set-and-forget approach that makes it all possible.

  21. james

    Always Thankful great article!

  22. Mohammad

    That’s right .. “less is more”

  23. Tomson

    This really must be the best way to make money on trading FX, as little job and stress as possible but still making money.
    Trading can very easy become very stressfull but as you say who want’s that?
    Thanks for a great article.
    Cheers Tomson

  24. lloyd Mabheka

    i got my life back!!thanks Nial

  25. slivester

    I want to be a lazy trader…thanks nial…god bless u…

  26. Mike

    Hi Nial
    Risk of killing relationship by excessive care is as real as killing trading account by excessive trading or other counter-productive trading habit. I make no mistake about former and I am grateful for being reminded to apply same “lazy” approach to later part of my life. Nial, you have briefly spoked about developing confidence as a trader and its definitely a subject I would like you to elaborate on in near future.


    what afantastic article man? how do you know always the best lanes to the right things? ilove you and ilove your mind man

  28. Mike

    My screen name is Mickpips…Good article, I’m naturally a lazy trader I would rather chase women all day !!!! lol
    Yes I stick to my plan and look for my edge in short intervals… Girls are attracted to “traders”- it’s mysterious to them :)

  29. meetaysh

    Nial-Again one of your best article, simplifying the so called taboo ” full time trader”. certainly a mind opener. thnxs
    meetaysh-dubai (uae)


    NIAL ! Thank you so much. It is FANTASTIC, A BIG EYE-OPENER. NIAL , You are doing a great service to many OBSESSED TRADERS. (a suffering community)It is high time,they change their life.

    with Regards, AMIN MALIK

  31. abiodun

    great man with great article,

  32. suraj chavan

    thank you sir for this good lesson

  33. The Big A

    I’m so lazy I did’nt read this lesson till 1 day later ! Thanks for all the brilliant advice & lessons Nial & Co.

  34. Csízi Barnabás

    It’s phenomenal!

  35. Emmanuel

    Nial, this a good article,i want us to look at it from this angle,before joining Nial , i was asked by one of the author of books i bought on forex, if i have covered 10,000hours and if not, i dont have a say, so everyday you see me watching my chart and doing allsort of analysis , that is because i was serching for knowledge to become a successful trader.That only stop when i join your group. So in every thing you do knowledge of it is important, otherwise you will be working round the clock thinking you are working hard.

  36. Nick S.

    It is amazing article, Nial. You are the man! Thank you so much!

  37. raynopssgold

    Well done, Nial. Now, we have more excuses to be “Lazy” here lol

  38. Mark

    I agree with the writer above (Okoyeocha) that you are a philosopher, and I like your philosophy. I have to say, though, that when I am laying around watching TV with a bag of chips in one hand, I’d rather have a premium beer in the other than a cheap one! Maybe a Foster’s pint can?

  39. Beau

    Another great article Nial! I’m on the path to being a lazy trader. I like it!

  40. Tay Tiang Ho

    Hi there,

    Convinced what you had said, trading less is actually more, and now I needs to learn more how to trade stress free.Thanks for your articles its open up my mind. A lazy trader is a happy trader. Cheers!

  41. Darrell J

    This article could not have been better written. I hope the traders are listening because you are giving away the secret.

  42. Jon

    Thank you Nial, appreciate your article.

  43. Joseph

    It seems like such a paradox: the more I stop TRYING the more I achieve! I always knew life is for living not working and have been branded lazy. But doing things I value such as volunteer work isn’t your stereotypical laziness. As you say, we may be lazy in one area and diligent in another. However, as a newbie i get all those anxieties and want to monitor my progress minute by minute, my fear intensifying with each breath. I want to get this right! I have to succeed! I guess what you are saying is its not necessary or even appropriate to be hypervigilant about trading. If I am so intense perhaps my lesson is to be intense about staying away!

  44. Nyaenya Daniel

    YOu said it right Nial, i really appreciate your articles. each of them is usually resource full.

  45. Patrick

    Saved !!

  46. Okoyeocha

    Nial you are also a philosopher. thank you for this lecture

  47. Sam

    Actually, your article ‘set and forget’ baptised me into the daily time frame as a trader. Now, I am confirmed lazy trader as I bag hundred of pips monthly without stress my eye balls on my computer almost every hour. It pays to be a hardened ‘lazy trader’.
    Thanks Nial, you are indeed God-sent.

  48. Surya

    Just ultimate

  49. Haroun Kola

    I want to be a lazy trader…

  50. Naman

    Gr8 article as ever, Nial. Many thanks for having such a course and such a simple trading approach.

    This really creates a difference not only in trading but also in life.

    I really like it and follow it.

  51. Asghar

    Very true I used to be a short time frame trader i.e. 15 m to an hour but not any more I look at the charts once a day and decide based on Daily max 30 minutes daily and that is it.

  52. Tracy

    U are so “DARN” right, Nial… Because I was watching the chart too long yesterday, I closed out my trade on the AUDUSD because it went north (i was selling)on me. Soon as i closed it…YEP,u guessed it, it went south to my original target and laughed at me all the way down there. SHAME ON ME. This article could have saved me a mistake. Don’t worry, Nial, lesson learnt. I’m gonna be a LAZY MO-FO from here on out…lol…lol… Thx NIal, this lesson was another platinum hit.

  53. Ray

    Loved this one…Really hit home..great solution that will work for me

  54. EdK

    Nial, this is just another article where you have “nailed it” for me personally. My nemesis has become over analysis and over thinking everything (not just trading). I’ve noticed over time when I take a more relaxed approach to trading my results are better and my overall life “runs more smoothly” and feels like I’m not struggling at any aspect of life. Great article! Keep ’em coming!

  55. sonny

    This zone is exactly where I want to be. Nice one Nial.

  56. Sachith

    Thanks you sir great article.

  57. alex

    Nice article! I like the way you approach your trading. Fits me real well. Appreciate all the articles you have been writing. Thanks!

  58. Richard Angelis

    Quite good and have recommended the article to my 24 member traders skype group some of whom are very motivated to be successful traders and will buy your education.

  59. mattockman

    Hi Nial

    One of your better articles. Maybe bacause it strikes a cord with the changes I need to apply to my own life / trading style.


  60. Brett Reynolds

    Should be entitled ‘The Lazy Ozzie’ Mans Guide to Forex Trading!? Haha!
    I look forward to ‘My Hammock’ on the Sunshine Coast Nial!

    You Diamond.

  61. AAG

    on the way to become a lazy trader you must first have got through that obsessive stage.if you think you can be lazy from the outset,good luck. if only it was that easy.

  62. Toby

    You called me out in many ways today with this article. I most definately have to change my “style”. I will read this article again and again in the next six weeks, and make the transistion for my New Years Resolution.



    Thanks Nial for these nuggets!!!!
    U actually got me thinking; i’m strictly a daily/4 hour trader.
    what do u think about checking d charts every 4 hour… i’m i being overly conscious???

  64. Jorge

    Just wanted to say thank you for yet another great article. I can actually state that my best trades ever were done while I was on hollidays!!! Lazy is good!! Thanks again Nial!

  65. Wajdi Beiruthy

    Great article and trhe best way to approach fx. Thank you for the insight

  66. Vince

    One of the key to successful trading, being ‘lazy’!

  67. John

    Exactly right as always Nial.
    I changed from 5 min time frames to daily time frames 12 months ago trading price action and ive been in profit ever since and Im only looking at my charts about an hour at the most.

  68. Mary Ann

    Thanks Nial :)

  69. chynado

    Nial, you are really, really good. this article is a comfort zone. thanks, man.

  70. woodya69

    Hi Nials, Probably the smartest way to view/play the trade.
    Good one mate.
    Cheers Woody

  71. chynado

    lollllllz, your are teacher, man.

  72. Adesuyi

    Great article, nial you have really changed our trading concepts in Nigeria. We hope to see u here one day.

  73. José Luis

    As usual, great article Nial. All the best for you. José L.

  74. Terry Witham

    Excellent article, I am a covert.

  75. water

    Soul searching ideas rush from Nials writings.Very high thinking but very difficult to put in practice for ordinary people like me.Eventhen very inspirational.Thanks a lot Nial

  76. Vic Boxwell

    Awesome Article! Nial, I found you and your website about 2 weeks ago. Since then, I have learned so much from you and you’ve become one of my favorite traders. You always get right to the point and tell it like it is. It’s easy to see why you’re so successful. Keep It Up!


    Vic Boxwell
    Rockville, MD
    United States

  77. Rod

    Aaah this is the business. Cheers for this, I am naturally laid back, I was thinking how am I going to trade, need to get hectic. Thanks!

  78. Tommie

    Well written words, Nial. Thank you.

  79. Dorian

    Many thanks Nial – great article.

    Your articles of “set and forget” and “lazy trader” are changing my perception of a pro trader. I read the above article twice as I am guilty of setting up many high probability trades based on what you teach us on your course, only to glue my eyes on the 4H chart and exiting the trades without letting them achieve their potential. It takes time to change deeply rooted bad trading habits of your students, but with patience and persistence it can be done.

    Much appreciated.

  80. ishmael

    i think everyday when i read your articles,sometimes i feel like you are talking to me directly,but all said…u are da bomb!!good work

  81. Sahil

    Top stuff Nial. I’m so grateful to have found your site before i start to trade real money. It’s probably saved me a lot of money. Will be joining your course pretty soon.

    All the best.

  82. edward mccartney

    i just want to write that you couldnt have spoke any truer words. Its only when i read this article i realised my trading was falling behind due to being overstressed and in turn losing confidence an close to losing relationships. Thanks a million niall will continue to read your amazing articles!!

  83. M.kavoshnia

    Thanks Nial,

    From now on i can make the most advantage
    of my time and enrgy.

  84. Emeka

    You were just talking to me right to my face.Thank a lot Nial.

  85. Kevin

    Great article, I took this step a while ago and first thing is remove all share & forex apps from your phone.

  86. Bobbletog Flartybart

    Hi Nial,

    Did you write this article after you had had a few beers!!

  87. Sanu

    Aahh…. Wah.. wah… I love this article mate…. Such a great post. I can say whoever follow your trading system, they will automatically convert to be a lazy trader.

    When I started trading Forex I had thought to resign my job and commit to trade full time and watch the chart all day. But now I drop my plan to leave the job. Because sitting all day without do anything is bore. Trading is not hard it seems. It’s very simple. Like you said it take less than 15 minutes to scan the chart and enter a trade.


  88. Ramli M Salleh

    Thanks Nial.

    Great scope..clear mind as clear as open sea.

    Enjoy and great trading


  89. Peter Grimes

    Niall, that is one of the best articles I have ever seen written about trading, after 4 yrs of trading, I can relate fully to this concept, I always trade better when “I can leave a trade and let it work out one way or the other”

  90. rundhir


  91. SL Desai

    A real eye-opener.
    I am going to STICK to this only

  92. Stephen

    I love your trading style but not very convinced we can make money from this method of trading. Pl try and convince me and ensure this not one of those “get rich quick schemes” that is paramount in the market today

  93. dev

    love it Nial, this is how u capture your audience ,honestly it makes sense, but trading sometimes, back of your mind the thought of leaving that trade and not managing it i guess u still have it in the mind ,but youre right set and forget is the aim long term ,no question about it ,love that desk guy relaxing with a cup saying genius resting ,wish i could do that !!

  94. IainMunro

    Great article Nial,time for me to make the transition.

  95. Naiteek Vikamsey

    Great article Nial, got to learn many important aspects and also did i know, how to enjoy the trading carrer… Thanks a lotttt….!!

  96. Lyte

    Nice one thanks Nial!

  97. Jeriah

    I love this article! Really spoke to me. Thanks Nial!