Improve your thinking, Improve your game
One thing I love about poker is the mental aspect of the game. It's not all math, numbers, and odds
-even though they do play a key roll in the game. Poker is not black and white where there is only one right way/one wrong way to play, there are so many variables to take into consideration for every situation. And for every situation, a player's approach will differ from another's play but both plays can be equally right based on how each person play. Poker is not a one-dimensional game but I think some players, especially newer ones, view it as such.
If you would, imagine a flat piece of paper with a square drawn on it. It's pretty one-dimensional, you can't see anything but the square. This is how I imagine some players view of poker, they only see one variable; they're tunnel-visoned basically. Now, imagine you have a 3-D cube in your hand. How is this different from the square on a piece of paper? You are not just limited to seeing what is in the front but also the back, the top, the sides, the bottom. You can take every variable into consideration, not just one. In way, this is how I view poker. Every situation I'm in, I see, or read about, I'm not just looking on what is front but every everything from every angel..
A simple example:
You have AA UTG with a stack of 4000. The blinds are 100/200 with 5 players at the table. You raise it to 600, it's folded the BB who goes all in for 1200 total (including BB). You call, BB flips over A8s and he makes a flush to double up off you.
Now, many beginner level thinkers will see this as a huge loss. All they really focus on is they had AA preflop and they lost to (a donk shoving) A8s. They usually do not look any further than that other than-they lost to a suckout. It's a flat, 1-D square that they see-they had the best hand and the opponent got lucky, end of story.
However, if you take look at it from every different angle as you would a cube, you can consider many more variables. Such as:
Your opponent is a short stack with 6 BB's left. He is also the blind which means he has 16% of his stack invested in the pot already.
-# of opponents:
Its short handed and opponent is short stacked, so he has to make a play soon or hey'll get blinded out. A8s is probably the best hand he'll see in a while.
You should take these two factors into consideration because its likely this is what your opponent is doing the same. Another thing to consider is that A8 that is not that bad of a hand if you had anything less than AA. 99-KK and you're only a 70/30. KX and you're 40/60 to win, 20/80 if you share an 8, and its a coinflip vs under pairs. You aren't always going to have AA here.
You got it in preflop as a huge favorite to win the hand. Thats what you want to happen. You're about a 90% favorite PF to win this hand.
-This is +EV:
Even if your opponent had a 10K stack, you want to get your money in everytime because you will win a lot more often than not.
You should take these into consideration because poker is not a game of current results. 10 losses in a row does not make you a bad player just like 10 wins doesn't make you a good player. Poker is a game based on decisions and if you make the best decisions more often than you do bad ones, then you will win more than you lose.
These are just some of the things to look for, think about, and focus on. While it is still a loss, no matter how you disected it, the fact is don't focus on the one time you lost but keep in mind of the 9 times you'll win in the long run. It's a very simple example, but it shows that by viewing each angle of the cube, it's not as bad as it seems on the surface.