Success as a poker pro takes years and decades. While this might appear glamorous, the job can be far from straightforward: your salary may not be guaranteed and there are tax issues, retirement savings plans and bookkeeping procedures to consider.
Top poker players know how to overcome all kinds of challenges and continue winning regardless. Here are some essential strategies they use for reaching success in poker.
1. Embrace Variance
Poker has long been seen as a way to quickly gain wealth, leading many individuals into it unaware. Professional players, however, view it as a long term pursuit and work tirelessly towards becoming the best they possibly can be at this game.
These poker players understand that luck plays a part in short term results, but can still largely control many aspects through understanding and controlling variance. When they lose three buyins at once, instead of panicking and swearing never to return, they recognize that variance played its part and know they will rebound soon enough.
They recognize the key to succeeding at poker is playing within one’s budget and only participating in games they can afford to win, thus enabling them to avoid being results-focused and instead focus on making quality decisions and understanding the probabilities associated with poker.
2. Don’t Tilt
Many poker players underestimate the significance of tilt to their winning potential. Tilt can lead to inefficient play that allows opponents to profit more often from you – this may be caused by anything from bad beats to an argument with their significant other.
When playing poker becomes emotionally intense, the best thing a poker player can do when feeling tilty is take a walk away from the table and take some time out for themselves to cool off. A disciplined player with great self-control may find they can calm down quickly after taking this break and return quickly back into their game.
Tilt can also be prevented by understanding the theory and probabilistic events governing poker. Knowing that you might lose several consecutive hands or experience a rough patch doesn’t alter long term results but can make resisting temptation easier when your playing irrationally becomes tempting.
3. Don’t Be Afraid of Bad Beats
Pro poker players choose this path not just because they love the game, but because they aspire to compete at its highest levels. To do this, they need a distinct edge over their competition that prevents them from getting carried away by initial successes.
Remind themselves that there’s more to winning at poker than just knowing how to play well; other factors come into play such as avoiding bad beats and capitalizing on opponents’ mistakes. Finally, treat their poker career like a business and keep detailed records of their performance so they can assess bad runs objectively and find leaks in their games.
Becoming a poker pro is seductive because you get to set your own schedule. But it is crucial to recognize that to become profitable player requires hard work and dedication over time; due to being not a get-rich-quick scheme; results often take years or even decades before they appear.
4. Don’t Be Afraid of Losing
Making a call when they are defeated can be one of the most agonizing parts of playing poker. Even though each loss may seem small, over time they add up quickly to compromise your bankroll and lead to losses that sap it away.
At every opportunity, it is critical that you play your best poker. This means only playing when you are calm, logical and thinking clearly as well as not playing when tired, stressed out or drunk.
An additional way to increase your winning chances is by keeping detailed records of your profit/loss results. Doing this will enable you to pinpoint any leaks in your game and make necessary changes accordingly, while also optimizing practice sessions by increasing EV. Furthermore, as soon as you transition from amateur poker into pro, the burden for taxes and health insurance will now fall on your shoulders alone.