Meet Tom Johnston
Tom has been a contributing member of Trading MasterClass since late 2018. Tom focuses heavily on the crypto space and openly shares his trade ideas, analysis, and insights within the TMC Club. At only 21 years of age, Tom’s already showing us what’s possible with hard-work, determination, and a strong, resilient mindset! Check out the full interview TMC recently conducted with Tom below...
When did your trading journey first begin?
My journey started in 2015 and I was mainly focused on the long term investment side instead of trading at the beginning (passive index funds & crypto). I got my start in IP, where I was introduced to trading and was intrigued with active speculation and the boosted returns you generate. I was careless with my trading at the start and proceeded to lose most of my Bitmex & FX accounts, but learned the mistakes and grew into consistency over the coming years.
When did you leave your day job, and what was it that made you want to pursue full-time trading?
My last ‘official’ job was working at McDonalds which ended in late 2016 when I started doing freelance work and then Blvck later on to build up my accounts more. I became consistent in 2017 which fortunately coincided with the crypto bull run and gave me enough capital to go full time, and have been since.
I was motivated to pursue trading mainly for the freedom of not relying on outside forces to influence your income. My whole life I was told what my time was worth, and trading was a way for me to make what I feel I deserve.
What is something unexpected that you love about trading?
I love the mental game and the emotional highs and lows you feel in the journey. When you’re on a winning streak, you feel unstoppable and like you have mastered the skill, then the losing streak comes to humble you, and you have to go back to the drawing board and become the student again.
What are one to three books that have profoundly impacted your trading journey and your life in general? Why?
3 Books: Trading in the Zone by Mark Douglas, Principles by Ray Dalio, and Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T Harv Eker. The first two books are good for trading psychology and learning the importance of systematic trading methods while the third is good for developing a better relationship to money, something that I lacked at the start of my journey.
What new belief, behaviour, or habit has helped you gain the most forward momentum since becoming a trader?
Constant self improvement. I feel trading is more than just analysis and executing the strategies. It’s a whole self development program disguised as trading and it reveals your good and bad extremes. To be able to improve in this industry, it isn’t about learning more technical knowledge or strategies. You have to improve your mindset, lifestyle, and emotions to be able to manage more volatility and grow as a trader.
"You have to improve your mindset, lifestyle, and emotions to be able to manage more volatility and grow as a trader."
What advice would you give to an inspired, driven individual about to step into the trading world?
You’ll probably lose an unthinkable amount at the start and think the strategies are a scam, but stick with it. If you learn the lessons early while capital is low, then you can reap the rewards later when you’re managing a larger account.
The point where you give up is the bottom before things start turning around. If you learn 1 lesson a day from your mistakes then you have a very good shot of becoming consistent in a few months/years.
How has Trading MasterClass assisted your evolution?
TMC refined the strategies and cut out most of the discretion that led to bad trades. The strategies are simpler, have defined criteria, and you can know the expected hit rate before taking the setup to make sure you have an edge every time.
What’s the next immediate step in your trading journey?
The next step is moving into the institutional side of the market and trading with a prop firm. I recently joined Propex and CryptoProp in their new crypto trading division and have been loving it so far.
Any final words of wisdom?
I’m still young (only 21) so I’m a little lacking in the wisdom department right now (maybe ask me again at 30 or 40!??). One piece of advice I always lived by was to always have self confidence in yourself and that you can achieve the results you want in life. It doesn’t matter if you’re 20, 30, 40 or 50, trading can change your life if you put the time into mastering it and have the capital to back yourself.
How can we keep up with you?
I’m most active on Instagram and post trading updates, positions and opinions on some financial topics from time to time. I also have Twitter to keep up with all the new developments in crypto. I’m also pretty active in the TMC Club so you can just @ me if you have any questions!