Daytrading Options for Autists

Good evening.

Today I’m going to talk about some of my personal rules and strategies for day trading options.

*I believe in self discipline in all aspects of life. I will give the disclaimer, if you lack self discipline, are trading with money you need, or prone to emotional irrational decisions, consider not daytrading or trading options in general. *

I have some rules I follow in my day to day setup that has brought me more success in trading than I imagined. I’m going to number them out and give detailed explanations of them.

  1. Have a plan, only trade the tickers in your plan.

This came about because I found myself looking at way too many things, getting spread too thin, and being unable to focus. This can cause emotional trading situations like feeling rushed, or the dreaded fomo. This will always lead to poor positioning, entries, exits, strikes, or position sizes.
So, I will pick tickers the night before an open market day or very early premarket. I am a level based technical scalper, so I break my ticker choices down like this:

Foundation ticker- this is the ticker I will actively trade on technicals all day or every day. For most this is SPY. It’s SPY/SPX for me as I treat them as the same ticker. On days I’m confident in the direction, I choose SPX because it’s more profitable. SPY is safer.

I will then allow myself two more tickers to watch max. Usually, these tickers are things that are catalyst driven, such as earnings tickers, or news or sentiment based tickers like the memes.

On days there are no earnings or catalysts I’m interested in, I focus solely on my foundation ticker, OR I play TSLA as well.

This keeps me familiar with patterns and movements on a few tickers while allowing me to branch out to other types of plays without overexposing myself or getting too overwhelmed. It also never gets boring to me which is important.

If some random ticker starts running I do not give a fuck. I focus on my tickers only. This prevents fomo and bad entries 100% of the time.

If I chose a ticker to play that is going too crazy or isn’t doing what I expected and I find myself guessing too much, I simply don’t play it. If all my tickers for the day went haywire I wouldn’t play them. Stick to your tickers and your plan for those tickers.

  1. During a volatile market, never hold a directional play over night.

This came about because In the recent market environment, holding anything overnight is too risky. News and volatility can create big gap ups or gap downs overnight and blow your whole position out, especially if you play FD’s. (Which I nearly exclusively play) It’s unwise to expose yourself to that type of risk even if “it’s just a lotto”. Sure, you may be right. But if you are it’s luck. We don’t want luck we want repeatable processes and consistency.

  1. Take profit when you are right, cut quickly and move on when you are wrong.

This is responsible options trading 101. A good way to blow your account the fuck up is to keep averaging down into a dumb ass position. If you are wrong cut it. This goes for bad entries, bad timing, bad strikes, whatever. If you made a wrong decision put your ego down, cut it, take the small hit, and gain it back on the next trade. Do not overleverage into a stupid position.

When it comes to taking profit, I am a big fan of scaling out.

Unless it’s a fast position and I know the entry is good, I usually scale into a position. Meaning I will buy options in groups of 5 or 10 depending on which account I’m using until I reach my desired position size. This is especially useful during times of high volatility like market open.if I scaled in from a small position and it goes sideways, I can cut quickly and move on. whereas if I dive head first into full position and I’m wrong, I’m taking more of a loss.

When it comes to scaling out, I scale out a pretty large chunk of the position when I reach my minimum desired profit.

If my position is say, 15 options with a average price of .20, I will sell 1/5 to 1/3 of my position when it hits my mark, which could be anywhere from 2%-10% profit depending on my goal for the day. So in our example, I’d cut five options at desired minimal profit.

Now, depending on how the rest move or my confidence in the move, my next move is setting take profit/stop loss orders on the remaining options. So 10 options will have profitable stop losses set that keep me from going red on the trade, with varying increasing percentages on the take profit orders. So 2 options may have 15% profit target, the next two 17%, the next two 20%, all the way until I reach the last remaining one which will be what people call the “runner”. I will either set a ridiculously high take profit orders on it or manually sell if it goes up higher.

This has been an incredibly successful way to scale out. Worst case scenario all your stop losses hit and you achieved you minimum profit goal for every option,which is still a great win!

  1. Have a realistic goal for what you are trying to achieve every day. Stick to that goal.

Set yourself up for success by setting realistic goals, even if that goal is something as basic as taking great entries. Work on each little aspect of options trading and focus until you are efficient at all these aspects. Too often people discredit methodologies or ideas as bullshit when in reality they just don’t understand it. People will tell you TA is horseshit but I am one of many people here who almost solely trade on TA and patterns and people are really successful at it. Study, work hard, and achieve your goals. When you achieve what you set out to do, restructure your goals to be bigger. If you are not reaching your goals, reevaluate your methods and learn more about what you’re struggling at. Fix the issues and try again. Everyone has a style that suits them. You just have to find it.

  1. Trade based on what the market is doing, not what you think it should do.

People get too focused on one direction. There is money to be made both ways and you should learn to be proficient with options on red days and green days, that’s why they fucking exist. It’s really that easy. I will use TA to determine levels, both bullish and bearish, and play the movements to these levels. That’s all I do. Very very basic and simple.

So those are my basic rules for daytrading/scalping options. I hope they help some of our beginners or those who struggle with making decisions.

I’m gonna talk about a few more recently mentioned topics and how I do things personally that some people may not agree with.

I don’t give a fuck about Greeks. I’m in trades for minutes at a time. I don’t hold overnight. I know my frequently traded tickers and how the options behave. The only thing I will look at along these lines for my personal style of trading is that bitch theta. It’s really the only one that effects scalping. Don’t over complicate shit.

Position sizing.
If I’m confident in a movement I know I’ve done my homework on I will do large positions. Just me personally. I’m very familiar with my personal risks and this is very Individualized. I’m an experienced trader and am more comfortable with it. If you aren’t, don’t. It’s that easy.

I don’t use candle charts. I don’t watch candles. I don’t give a fuck about candels.

Part of this is trading on mobile all the time and having fucked up vision. But because i trade in technicals and patterns I have to see clear movement and line charts provide a more crisp view of that. People get in the terrible habit of watching every second of every candle and that’s just retarded. You should watch the days chart, the chart from about a week out, then zoom out to last month/three months. This is to look at current trend, and longer term big picture trends, and help you make better decisions. big picture matters. Even on intraday scalps. If you love candles that’s great, but just know it’s not a necessity to be profitable to watch every second of every candle.

Keep up with the news.
Technicals and TA are fucking awesome. They work. News does matter tho. Weird shit can happen, like covid, war, etc, that will make the market go insane. Gotta keep up with potential effects on the market.

Work off of overall market sentiment when deciding what you should trade.
If overall market is hella bearish I’m gonna be apprehensive about taking calls on a ticker even if it’s green currently. Just something to be aware of.

Keep track of sectors and how they move.
Things like energy, tech, defense, etc. They all move together in their respective sectors, and they can all show signs of what’s to come for the market. This is more of a macro discussion but there’s plenty here on those topics. This includes the memes. People are always surprised the memes move in unison or similarly, don’t be. They are a sector of their own now as far as market is concerned. This will aid you in deciding on sympathy plays as well for things like news releases or earnings on sector specific tickers.

I will be adding more detailed or advanced stuff to this as time goes on. Hope some of this helps decision making. If there’s a particular topic you want covered feel free to comment.


Very insightful write up. Seems like common sense but it’s the foundational stuff that’s easily forgotten along the way

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Enjoyable read, I’ve found myself winning more than loosing however, I’ve found I cut for profit quicker than loss. Struggling to get over that hump because things move quick.
How do you handle stops? Do you have a 5% rule or something on your position? Or are you working to say a 3 min time frame to make the exit?

I’ve been trading off the 3 min and 5 min in general, if both confirming my thesis of a direction I’ll continue.

Once again thanks


I’ve adopted many of LB’s recommendations and not only is my trading more profitable it’s less stress.


I don’t use stops on fast moving tickers like SPX or TSLA unless I set them profitable later on when I’m scaling out of a play. I enter positions on those tickers assuming I may lose the entire position so if it gets too retarded I just manually cut. I also only enter positions on them if I’m really confident in correct so I don’t usually need stops if that makes sense. Not that I’m some options god, I’m just really calculated in entries otherwise I wouldn’t enter

On slower moving plays like SPY or Earnings style plays Im usually comfortable with a 5%-10% stop loss if I feel I may need it, say if I’m working or may get distracted irl, but it’s really just up to your personal risk.


Appreciate the response, so I’ve been trading spx the same way. I’ve did 2 x sub 1 min trades for $200 a piece, the risk / reward probably wasn’t worth what the loss could have been but I had some confidence.

I’ve noticed spx has allowed me to not fear taking profit just because of how fast it is. I do need to improve on my reading of the charts however, it’s more of a speed play.

Also, appreciate the risk tolerance on spy, I think I need to force myself to put stops in etc. sometimes as I’ll just wait for the never never on occasion. Habit forming needs to happen.

Thanks for putting this together, everything above is great stuff. I’ll be back to read this a few more times and will probably have questions but this covers the basics well. I do an ok job in some of these area’s and not so much in others. One of my big focuses lately is entries and being patient for them to hit, it’s how I was able to turn a few of these post ER plays in 100% within minutes. Everyone on the server should review this before they start trading options, would have saved me a substantial amount of losses when I started and not that long ago!

I need to work on my discipline as the money I day trade with is just fun money, the account has been up to $100K plenty of times and my initial investment has long been pulled out along with substantial profits but I’ve also been in some tough plays that we’ve all been apart of over the last year and watched those disappear as fast as they’ve come. Learned the hard way fighting trends this spring where I had built up less than $10K to $30K in a few months. My goal is to learn how to do this long term and be able to retire a little earlier than 50 so I can spend more time enjoying life and my family.

I have a lot to learn and things like this are super helpful, thanks for contributing this to the community!

When trading in an account the size of yours, I use the “cap and roll” strategy for profit from day trading.

What this means is if there is say 20k in the account (you should be trading in a Roth IRA but thats another topic), I will “cap” the amount I day trade with at say 10k. So I will not spend more than 10k on options trades in one day. EVERYTHING profit wise I make, or anything over the 10k, gets DCA’d into long term hold shares of tickers I like.

This let’s the account grow, and limits the amount you use to day trade, which mitigates over leveraging and risk. 10k is plenty to comfortably day trade with and gain substantial profit and maintain consistent Buying power.

So if you day trade and make $500 profit today, use that profit or any amount of money past your day trading cap amount and buy shares of something you want to hold long term.

Then don’t touch those shares until time to retire


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