The bear market is preparing me for the next bull run

Where would you say is the best place to start?

I would say 2016, although I’m also inclined to rule it out because it didn’t spark my interest in crypto. This is what happened: I went to a seminar about Bitcoin. But really, it was a Ponzi scheme that was using Bitcoin in its operations. Even if I was interested in what they sold me, I didn’t have the funds to invest. That made my decision easier for me, and I returned back to my life.

What were you up to?

I was in university, so there was something else to focus on. Fast forward to 2018, I graduated from university and found work as an interior decorator. In the same year, Bitcoin came up on my radar again in a different light — it wasn’t wrapped around a Ponzi scheme. I learned a little about how crypto worked, which led me to airdrops, and I started chasing them here and there. Again, I wouldn’t call this the beginning of my participation in crypto.

Why not?

I dabbled in it for the sake of it. On many levels, it was a hustle. Also, I had no conviction about it because I knew next to nothing about the fundamentals. I was just doing it because other people were doing it.

That’s fair.

From there, I started looking into Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) in the hopes of getting in early on potentially rewarding projects. However, most of them turned out to be scams.

Want to talk in more detail about it?

I don’t remember much, but someone asked me to send an amount in ETH to a wallet address to get into the ICO. I did that and never heard from them again. This was quite a learning experience.

Sorry about that.

It’s all right. The big mentality change happened in February or March 2019. I found a fascinating Instagram account that posted crypto content and engaged with it consistently. Consequently, I started understanding the concept of crypto and the fuss about it being a new monetary system and a means of financial revolution.

Wait, didn’t it rub you off wrongly that people were asking for money to teach you this stuff?

No. I wasn’t entitled to their time or help. In my mind, they sacrificed time and other resources to learn how to trade. So it was only fair if they wanted to charge money for the knowledge.

Fair enough. What happened next?

As I said, I was still in contact with the second person. One day, they shared a link to a WhatsApp group on their WhatsApp status. It was one of Binance’s university communities.

What’s that?

Binance had an ambassador program at the time, so there were groups such as this across universities.

Word. Where did you go from there?

I thought the best thing to do for myself was to pick a niche to focus on. I decided on technical analysis — which is the technique of using past trends and chart patterns to predict the price of an asset in the near future — and committed to improving myself. I wanted to be known as the technical analysis guy. The rest just fell in place.

Love it. Were you actively trading while this was happening?

Yes. In February 2019, I transferred $64 in Bitcoin — what remained of my failed crypto experiments — to my Binance wallet. And that’s what I started spot trading with. I dabbled into futures trading as well, but I got liquidated a couple of times. I took it as a sign to stick with spot trading. However, my capital wasn’t significant, so I wasn’t making big profits. Still, it was something.

Got it. How was trading going though?

Two years had passed since I started trading, and it was going smoothly. I was making money regularly. Important context: this was the peak of the 2021 bull run, and it was easy to make money. By May 2021, I had built one of my portfolios to $15k.

That’s something.

I guess. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was still a newbie.

Why was that?

I didn’t understand market cycles because I had never been in one. Then the May 2021 crypto crash happened. Bitcoin went from an all-time high of more than $60k to less than $30k. The other cryptocurrencies followed suit.

That doesn’t sound good.

It wasn’t good. I lost about 80% of my portfolio, and this is a conservative figure. I know I saw one of my portfolios drop from $15k to $2k.

How so?

It wasn’t exactly trading-related, but I was holding on to a lot of coins. The thing was that they were good coins at the time and served the purpose I needed them for — they had low market caps and were highly volatile. But they also had no real-world applications/use cases. They only worked because it was the bull run and the market conditions were generally favourable.

There must have been a reason, though. Wasn’t there?

My mantra was that if you don’t hold, you won’t be rich. This is true, but it doesn’t apply to every coin. At least not to the coins I was holding. 90% of them have no value today.

Man. That’s brutal.

I took a week or two away to reflect on what I may have done wrong. Subsequently, I went on another learning drive. By extension, my technical analysis game also improved.

What was that?

In September 2021 — four months after the May crash — I was scammed on a peer-to-peer exchange and lost $5k.

I’m so sorry about that.

Thank you. I’ve gone through all the motions and have accepted it. I know I’m still going back to make everything back at some point. The focus now is to build back up and enjoy the process. It’s probably why I’m so calm about the current bear market.

Oh, you are?

Everyone is a genius during a bull market. A bear market is when everything you know is put to the test. Because of that, a bear market is the best time to build and learn.

Your optimism is contagious. You are in your second market cycle now. Do you have an idea when the next bull market might be?

This is not financial advice, but we’ll see bounces here and there in the following months.

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