It's hard "teaching an old dog new tricks" because it naturally reverts to old patterns of behavior. I happen to believe the same issue holds true for many options traders.
That is, they've already learned so many "half-truths" about options and they're laboring under so many misconceptions, they have a tough time learning the "real" truth about how options work.
What I'm saying is that it's very difficult "unlearning" what you've already acquired as "knowledge." So it's important to at least suspend judgement and keep an open mind so that new material will have an opportunity to eventually replace the old.
The study of options is really the study of applied mathematics, and as such there are definitive conclusions that can be drawn about how options behave and how certain strategies of trading options can be expected to perform.
Becoming an expert in options theory, however, is a far cry from being a trader who profits from options. Why? Because making money is a function of applying the options strategy that will match how a market will unfold. And, of course, no one knows with certainty what any market is going to do.
So each trader must act on the basis of a forecast of his expectations for market direction and market sentiment (as reflected in option premium).
I'm often asked "What's the best options strategy?" for a particular market. My response is "First, tell me what you think the futures will do (rally, sell-off, move sideways), tell me how much money you're willing to commit for margin, and tell me if you think implied volatility will move higher, lower, or stay the same." The answers to these questions will dictate what type of trade is appropriate. Then the trade will earn profits if the market's behavior matches your forecast.
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