For Certus Trading’s Matt Choi a Winning Mindset Vital Both Within and Outside of Trading
Twenty years ago, Matt Choi owned and operated a successful Toronto automobile dealership. At the time, the fledgling entrepreneur who had only recently earned an MBA from McMaster University was looking to start a company. He bought the failing dealership—it would be a huge understatement to say that it wasn’t doing well at the time—and turned it around.
A self-described process-oriented guy, Matt Choi recalls spending a considerable amount of time familiarizing himself with each department and even sold cars without his customers knowing that he was the owner.
“I wanted to prove to my people that if they follow the process, it will work,” says Choi, who also began trading options on the side. He eventually sold the dealership at a seven-figure profit so he could dedicate himself to full-time trading.
The move proved valuable.
After he sold his dealership, he launched Certus Trading, a trading education company and platform through which he teaches his trading strategies and winning mindset to his students, who are eager to learn more about how to be successful traders.
“My late grandfather did very well trading stocks in Hong Kong,” says Choi. “When I was in grades five and six, my school was finished by noon. So after lunch, I would go with my grandpa to the Hong Kong stock exchange to settle his trades. I was a minor and couldn’t go inside, so I waited for him outside the exchange looking at those green monitors with numbers.”
Matt Choi says that during many bus rides to and from the exchange, his grandfather taught him how to pick stocks. “He also taught me to look for services that people needed, and to only buy the leaders in the industry. I learned a lot from him at a very young age, and that awareness of the market has remained with me.”
Now a veteran Chartered Market Technician (CMT) with extensive trading experience, Choi successfully swapped what could have been a lucrative career putting people behind the wheel for a significantly more rewarding one putting people in the driver’s seat of their own destiny.
“Many people dream of spending their days doing what they like and earning a good living from it,” says Certus Trading’s Matt Choi. “It’s not necessarily easy to make the transition, but it’s very gratifying once you overcome the initial hurdles.”
He adds that his own journey hit more than a few speed bumps during the early years.
“For me, it initially involved more than four years of frustrating—and expensive—experimentation before I hit the right combination of trading philosophy, approach and mindset to succeed at being a trader.”
Choi says it helps to connect with those who have experience doing the work you want to do, one or more people who can provide much-needed advice and guidance. Early on, he had the good fortune of meeting and being mentored by the late George Fontanills, one of the most successful options traders in North America.
Today, through Certus Trading, Matt Choi is returning the favor by helping traders find their own paths to success.
At Certus Trading, Choi provides a wide range of courses that focus on both the technical and strategic aspects of trading. But it’s not simply textbook theory — he also emphasizes to traders the importance of developing a winning trading style and mindset.
“The reality,” says Matt Choi, “is that while it’s important as it is to have the knowledge and instincts to know when to buy, hold and sell, the mindset of the individual trader is really the most important quality when it comes to achieving trading success.”
The Winning Mindset
He describes this theory in detail in his book The Winning Way, which he co-authored with motivational expert Brian Tracy. “Over the years I’ve come to realize that while the ability to analyze and understand the markets is vital, a trader’s mindset is crucial when it comes to success. A winning mindset allows you to execute your trading strategies free of doubt or hesitation—and that truly is important.”
Choi says that he personally gained his own mindset awareness after he had switched careers. “I learned that day trading wasn’t appropriate for my personality, and that I didn’t have the patience for position trading,” he recalls. Instead, through his work with Fontanills, Matt Choi learned that his trading personality naturally dovetailed with swing trading within a narrow field of markets.
Matt Choi has helped many of his trading students achieve success, and says that if you have a passion for the markets and enjoy the benefits that comes with trading, the next step is to find a way to become a good trader. That’s where Certus Trading helps.
First, he says, you need to determine your trading time frame. If you decide to be a day trader, you’ll be active every day during trading hours, taking advantage of micro-movements in the markets. For the person who likes to move quickly and doesn’t have a lot of patience, day trading is a great option.
There’s also the option of doing swing trading, which follows the momentum and intermediate trends of the markets, and doesn’t require you to be active everyday.
On the other hand, if you’re not quite ready to quit your full-time job for a career in trading, then you may want to consider position trading during which you can hold the trade for a few months to a few years.
The key, says Choi, is to be realistic with yourself and select a style of trading that suits your personality and lifestyle.