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The debate on whether poker is a game of skill or chance has been raging ever since the early days of the poker boom. To those who understand poker, it is quite clear that it is a skill game and one that requires some efforts to master.
To be successful at poker, you must learn so many different skills and excel at each one of them.
The fundamental understanding of the game is, of course, critical, but ability to control your mindset can also have a profound impact on your results.
Today, people in all walks of life have learned the importance of having a proper mindset, with mobile apps like PrimedMind popping up to help train people’s mental faculties in various ways.
In poker specifically, there are several mindset-related factors that players can work on to improve their results and achieve greatness.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 poker mindset tips that can help you improve your results and get the most out of your poker sessions.
5. Treat Poker as a Job
If you want to be a winner in poker, you will have to treat it just like you would any other job. This means you have to go in to work regularly, and you have to do your best when you are there if you want to get paid.
If you treat poker as a hobby and approach it less seriously, you are likely not going to always play your best game. This may lead to many wasted opportunities and missed spots.
The major danger with poker is the fact you have no boss, which makes it very easy to slack off and not treat the game seriously enough.
You will need to keep yourself in check and be very honest with yourself to really thrive and achieve the goals you set for yourself.
4. Have a Life Outside of Poker
Being dedicated to your poker career and goals is very important. However, it is also critical that you have a life outside of poker that you go back to after your sessions.
Just like any other job, you should not let poker be the only focus of your life. This can cause burnout and simply make you hate the game you once loved so much.
You should make sure to take breaks and not play poker every day so you can stay hungry for the game and also have other hobbies and interests that you can dedicate yourself to when you are not playing.
Personal relationships are also very important for any person in any line of work, and that goes even for the best poker players too. Many young players tend to stay secluded and without real interpersonal relationships, but this is one of the biggest traps and mistakes that players can fall into.
3. Don’t Think You Are The Best
Poker is a tough game that mixes many different skills and abilities. For that reason, it is unlikely that there is any single poker player who could be called the best in each of them, and even if there was, it is unlikely you are the one.
Accepting that there are better poker players out there and that even some of the players you are playing against may be better than you is a good step in becoming a better player yourself.
Being confident is important if you want to be successful at poker, but being cocky will produce the exact opposite result.
I recommend assessing your abilities as honestly as you can and being honest about how good you think others are as well. The more you learn about the game, the more you will be able to recognize who the best players are in your games.
By always looking for the best players and trying to figure out what they are doing, you will improve your own poker skills and learn to remain humble and realistic, which is another important trait of a great poker player.
2. Set Poker Goals
To achieve great results in poker, you will need a lot of focus and commitment. Having a clear plan and goals set before you start out is a good idea as it allows you to focus your efforts better.
If you simply play poker at random times, pick random games, and don’t care about proper bankroll management, it is unlikely you will have amazing results in the games.
On the other hand, if you approach the game with a very concise plan and clear goals you want to achieve, it is much likelier you will be able to meet those results with time.
You should start out by setting realistic goals that you can achieve within a reasonable period, and you should not aim too high right off the bat.
I recommend setting a monthly and a yearly goal for what you want to achieve in poker and keeping a regular log of your sessions, your wins, and losses. As you achieve your poker goals, your motivation to push forward will only grow with every passing month.
1. Accept the Variance
Perhaps more important than all the other things you can do to get better results in poker, you will need to learn to live with the variance that the game of poker always carries.
Poker is one of the most volatile games in the world, and even great poker players suffer losing stretches and bad streaks. These can last a while depending on the game type you choose and the quality of players you go up against.
The more you understand and accept variance as an inevitable part of the game, the better you will play when you are on a downswing, which is the one time that most players start tilting and playing under their general ability.
If you can avoid tilting during downswings, you will have a massive edge over your opponents, who will generally not be playing their A-game at all times. You can exploit this and give yourself just the advantage you have been looking for.