Poker is just one of those games where you either want to play, or you don’t. If you don’t want to play poker right now, you need to stop and think about what’s keeping you from having your best poker game ever. Is it fear? Are you worried about the number of people that you have to play against? Are you thinking about all of the ways that you can mess up?
Either way — stop that. You are in control of you, and that means that it’s up to you to make sure that you don’t let your poker game slip. Now, we are poker players too, and therefore we are trying to reach out to our fellow gamblers before they end up blowing through their bankrolls. Did we mention that this is all part of managing your bankroll? If your psychological game is off, your poker game is going to be off too.
You will need to think about the type of poker game that you want to have, and figure out how to achieve it. Is it that you need to brush up on the fundamentals of poker? Is it that you need to switch to a different variety to give your brain a chance to try on something new? We know we’re asking a lot of questions, but these are the same questions that we had to ask ourselves in order to really make sure that poker is something that we wanted to keep playing. We needed to stop and really ensure that poker is something we still wanted to do. A lot of the struggles that we overcome as newcomers to the poker world were the realization that this was definitely real — we were putting real time, real energy, and real money into the sport of poker. It really is a sport in many ways, and it’s one that takes practice.
If you were into weight lifting, would you stop lifting just because you felt bad one day? Would you stop if you just didn’t feel like going to the gym one day? Would you stop if people told you that they didn’t understand why you spend so much time with this discipline?
Of course not — not if you really wanted to be a weight lifter more than anything else in the world. If you really want to play good poker and win big money, you will need to start adopting this attitude. Yes, we write a lot about mastering your psychological game because this is the first place that people are going to attack. They’re going to make you feel like it’s impossible to play good poker because there are just too m any things that are outside of your control.
Yes, this is also true — you can’t control what hole cards you’re going to get, nor will you ever be able to control the way the flop hits. There are going to be times where luck will win you pots, and luck will also cause you to lose pots. However, instead of worrying about the things that you can’t control, why not start thinking about the type of things that you can control? Why not start thinking about the fact that you can look at the statistics of poker and make sure that you’re calculating your pot odds before you even step down to make a move?
Sometimes you will have to let go of pots that seemed like sure things, but if you play poker with logical methods, you’re going to win more often than if you just relied on gut feelings. Do we play with emotion sometimes? Sure — but we also acknowledge that we just increased our risk when we do that. As long as you can live with increased risk, you’re welcome to develop your poker game anyway you choose.
If you find yourself ready to get more serious about poker, you might need to make sure that you’re running with people that are just as passionate as you. Unfortunately, when people don’t share your love for a certain hobby, it can feel like you’re wasting your time playing poker. While we tell people to avoid complaining too much on poker social boards, the truth is that you can turn them into something constructive pretty easily. It’s just a matter of really wanting to turn it into something productive.
When you get started on a poker message board, you will need to make sure that you’re not just rushing in like you’re an expert. If you’re coming into the boards from a learning standpoint, you will want to make sure that you communicate that point very well. If you just rush in and try to answer everyone’s questions right off the bat, people are going to assume that you’re pushy and they’re not going to want to really deal with you.
At the end of the day, poker is really what you make of it. As long as you are aware of your play at all times, you’re not going to run too high of a risk of letting your poker game slip — why not play a few hands today? You could probably use the practice, and there’s always someone that would be more than happy to put your newfound poker gambling skills to the test!