Many people are initially drawn to poker because they assume there’s easy money to be made. That’s partly true: there’s money, and if you’re a good player it can be easy, but it’ll require hard work and time to get to a point where you are that good. There is no magic switch from unprofitable to profitable before you transition from beginning state to winning state.
Going From Beginner To Consistent Winner
One of the biggest things I’ve learned is that “The Secret” or the law of attraction exists in poker. You can have almost anything you want, if you create an action plan, follow it, and exercise patience. Here’s how you can do this…
Focus On: What, Why & How
Identify what you want and for a smoother ride to your end destination, plan how you’re going to get there ahead of time.
Forget About: When
To go from beginner to winner, love the process instead of going through the motions and expecting the best results. With a systematic approach, you won’t put in the best effort, and you’ll miss vital information. Meaning, you’ll need to reread and relearn concepts. If however, you love every moment of the learning process, you’ll be operating at a peak learning state, so you’ll retain and absorb more. This means you’ll be in a peak performance state when you play; thereby, you’ll play better and develop faster as a player.
Embrace The Process
The More You Love It, The Easier It Is To Do It
When you’re passionate about something, you’ll be excited to play and become a stronger poker player. So embrace the process and love every minute of learning, playing, reviewing, watching poker and talking strategy with friends, because when you love it, it’s easy to do.
The Journey Is The Destination, So Enjoy It!
If you’re results-driven you’re more likely to get frustrated and quit the game because you won’t achieve your goals quickly. In fact, it’ll probably take you much longer to get to your end goal. So enjoy the journey, don’t rush it!
Understand How The Small Parts Fit Together
It’s better to be process-oriented instead of results-oriented as you’ll focus more on the end goal and enjoying the process. When it comes to poker, it’s better to incorporate multiple learning strategies and to put your focus on improvement rather than how much money your winning or losing.
Don’t Just Accept Information – Ask & Analyze
To speed up your journey, question everything. Don’t assume everything is gospel just because a pro says it’s a good play. Use your critical thinking. Break down the play to identify why it’s good: what are its merits, and where could it be effective in gameplay? Poker isn’t just about memorization; it’s about understanding the concepts, the fundamentals, the finer details so that you can break things down easier. The more adept you become at this, the sooner you’ll understand advanced concepts so you can develop strategies of your own. This is key, imitation is a good starting point, but ultimately you want to develop your own strategies.
Be Your Own Evaluator
Feedback From The Game, Not Reflective Of Decision-Making Ability
Variance is a natural part of poker, long haul coolers, bad beats are going to happen, and they’re going to happen both ways. It’s not a reflection of your skills, so you’ll need a large-scale view so you don’t get caught up in the immediate happenings. Poker can give you terrible feedback, like punishing you for the right move while rewarding you for the wrong. Your focus should be on making strong EV decisions and creating profitable long-term strategies. Being able to adjust to the changing poker landscape is what creates winning strategies. The greater your understanding of the game, the speedier your development because you can evaluate situational plays better.
Focus On The Big Picture, Don’t Get Caught Up In Noise
To be the best you can be, you need to understand the big picture. Knowing the parts of the game will help you in specific situations, however, to tilt less and focus more on the end goal, maintain a broader perspective.
There Will Always Be Swings
No matter how good of a player you become, you’re going to experience swings. Throughout your poker career, there will be winning and losing days; so prepare yourself. To minimize the effects of a downswing requires expert game selection, being able to bring your A-game and knowing when to quit. Variance requires putting in a lot of quality hands to balance out the luck factor. In terms of how long before you see a turnaround on your money, it depends on your learning methods, your limits, the competition, and how well you apply what you’ve learned. The greatest investment in your quest to become a winning poker player is time – quality time can lead to better results.
From Beginner To Winner
To become a consistent winner, it’s not about accomplishing your checklist; it’s about mapping out your long-term approach and putting in quality practice and study time. Don’t just see what happens, plot out your approach before you get down to business if you want to win more regularly.
Poker coach and author Evan “Gripsed” Jarvis has made a name for himself in the poker live streaming space. Actively grinding for over 10 years, Jarvis has played everything from micro-stakes to high-stakes, both live and online. The Canadian pro is committed to sharing his poker learning with everyday players and teaching them to play like the pros through exclusive articles you can find on PokerCoaching.com.