I trade too.
I wish I could help you on all that +DI / -DI and the ADX. That is all too complicated for me. I'm a student of Ed Seykota and his emphasis on simplicity. That being said, he put everything you need to know in a song:
My directional indicator is my eyeball on a chart. They key is to get on the trend, and as Seykota sings, "ride that trend right to the end."
Stock market trend is down. Gold trend is down. Interest rate trends are down. Jump on them with the best vehicles you can find / afford / tolerate & survive in terms of risk and then let time do the work for you.
- - - - -
One trader asked Ed how you can prevent getting whipsawed, and Ed said, "Don't trade." In other words, there is no way. Just minimize the losses and maximize the gains.
You get a whip, and I get a saw, but one good trend pays for them all!
(Sounds so easy!)
My greatest trading fortune was to read his interview in Market Wizards a long time ago. Google him if you're interested.
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