There are all types of successful traders, ones that trade big money with big positions who also have big swings in their P&L, and those that trade small but are consistently profitable with hardly any P&L volatility. Which type of trader are you?
From my experience training and developing new daytrader newbies during my Worldco LLC days on 110 Wall Street, I have seen so many types of people give daytrading a try. And from what I have witnessed over the years is this: you are how you trade. Or should I say you are what you trade?
One's personality definitely influences what type of trader you will become. One of the great analogies I give to people is this, imagine you are in Vegas and sitting at a roulette table. You see 15 reds in a row. Do you now bet black or red (and say green is not an option)?
If you are the person who will bet red then you are more suited to momentum trading -- trading WITH the trend. You like to flock with the herd. The trend is your friend! You will be best suited as a trader to not do any bottom picking but rather be buying stocks that are hitting new 52-week highs or shorting stocks with disasterous earnings that are making new intraday lows.
And if you are the person who will bet on black, you are more suited to be the contrarian trader. You don't believe the momentum will last. You are a disbeliever! I am more like this, the type that will bet on black. I love to try and bottom fish tanking stocks or short high RSI breakout stocks. I sometimes don't have the patience to ride a long position that continues to go up and I end up selling too early, while a true momentum trader would ride the stock up another dollar before selling.
A second tip I give to traders is that your personality dictates what type of stocks you will be better suited at trading. If you are an outgoing and attention hungry individual, you will be bored trading the non-volatile stocks like $GE but excel at stomaching the 5 point intraday swings of $GPRO. You will gravitate towards high beta stocks naturally. And if you are more of an introvert and always order vanilla ice cream at Baskin Robbins, I believe that you would be better adept at trading less volatile stocks. You will be satisfied making $100 on a trade everyday and you aren't the type that would over use your buying power in stock positions.
For all the people who are trying to learn the markets, figure out first what type of trader you would like to be and see if it matches your personality. My above opinions are of course generalizations and certainly does not apply accurately to all traders. But from my career on Wall Street sitting at those long trading desks in a huge room, this is what I observed and what I recommend to people looking for some guidance.