4K Post!!! Whoohoo!
Wow! Made it to 4K. I can remember right after I first started here seeing Dakota's and Buckster's post count and thinking "I'll never make it that high". Slowly but surely, I'm getting there (even if theirs keeps growing exponentially LOL). So, first off, thanks CC for being the best site out there for poker players to learn and have fun.
Anyway, I never really made much of a good post for any of my milestone markers so I thought I would do it this time. I haven't really made much progress since my 3k post, but in the last two months I have been taken on by a new coach at Team Moshman and have seriously settled down into learning how to become good at SnG's. And I would love to report that since I started with my coach that things have turned around for me and I'm making tons of money... but that's not true. And it's not due to my coach not being a good coach, or me not being a good coachee, it's just that I believe things have to get worse before they can get better.
Bill (my coach) jumped in and immediately had me change my style to a more winning approach. My old approach was pretty horrid. But in the learning process (for poker anyway) most people can't just be shown something that is totally different from what they've been doing and use it to transform their game immediately. I fit in with most people.
And Bill also said something that really changed my game a ton. One day we were chatting on Skype and I mentioned that, after using his techniques for a couple of weeks, that I felt like a robot and that I didn't like that. He told me that that was a good thing because when we "robotically" start making the right decisions we will start seeing better and better results. And also that once we learn something and make those decisions automatic (or robotic) that we can now learn something else and begin to make those decisions automatic. And at first I thought this was going to be the most boring thing in the world! Who wants to take a game and just sit and make the same decisions every time? Well, about a month after we chatted about that, I did! I started noticing that my graph was not taking a downward spiral anymore, it was flattening out. Then a couple more weeks went by and it started to take an ever so slight turn towards the upwards direction.
But seriously, this is over a relatively small sample (400-500 games) and it could be that it is just typical variance playing it's game with me. But I highly doubt it. As much as I've learned about variance, and as much as I hate it sometimes, I know that, as long as I'm making correct decisions, over the long run I'll make money. And that is exciting to a poker player who has been constantly depositing over and over again only to play it for a month or two and lose it. This all hit me just as I was about to go to sleep one night. I had just laid down after a bad set of sessions for the day and was pretty much stewing over it. Things were going through my mind from the games I had played and then a mental picture of my graph popped into my head. It hit me like a ton of bricks! Even though I was still below zero on my graph, I had been playing on the same $40 that I had won in a CC freeroll months prior to that night. And not only was I playing the same $40, I had turned it into over $150 with rakeback and winnings and such. I fell asleep for the first time in a long time thinking happy thoughts about my poker play.
I'm no pro by any means. You can Sharkscope
me and see that. But I have played poker for a long time. Playing for that long time I'm sad to say I know more about what doesn't work than what does. So, my advice is going to lean towards what to do as a poker player rather than the typical strat post (believe me, you don't want me doing strat posts).
1. Spend more time on CC learning than posting about hockey scores or Lindsey Lohan's latest court case. There are plenty of other sites for that stuff. Leatherass posted in his "In the well" thread that time spent not playing or learning poker is money lost. My first thoughts on that post was "Bullshit! The more I don't play the more money I save". But I was looking at it wrong. He didn't say that was only true if you were making money to begin with. Even if you're a losing player, the experience you gain by playing and posting HH's and debating over others HH's is valuable experience. It won't turn you into an overnight success, but it will speed up the pace before you turn the corner and start making money. So use your time wisely.
2. Pick a game and learn it. For the longest time I would put money on a site, play NLHE cash games, lose most of it, then go to Omaha 8/b and make some back, then blow most of it again on Rush poker, and then go to MTT's to make what I had left last as long as possible. Dumbest thing ever! You can't learn anything that way except for poker is expensive. Pick a game, whether it be Cash, Rush, SnG's, MTT's, Omaha or whatever and stick to it. Pick a game that you enjoy and that you can find tons of info on. Then study it with everything you've got.
3. Get a coach. This doesn't mean go get a second job so that you can afford a $50-$150 p/hour coach. You can either apply for a Team Moshman coaching deal
(if you do, please mention my name so I get credit), or just ask in the forums for a study partner or three. Download Skype and Teamviewer (both free) and get with your study partners or coach as much as possible. And take notes when you do these sessions. You can't ingest everything you hear immediately and be able to use it in the heat of battle. Write it down quickly and then straighten up your notes later and keep them close by for use when you need them. And don't expect sudden results. Just stick with it and keep learning and things will turn around in time.
4. Don't stick $50 on a site and expect to make it. Even though this is the same way I used to do it, it's wrong. If all you can afford is $50, just bank it and don't play it until you can get your bankroll built up. Get at least $200 on a site before you start to play it and then stay at the lowest stakes possible for the games you play. Learn bankroll management now or just expect to lose your ass, it's that simple. Very few people can load up $50 and never look back. Some people have made their money from freerolling. That's fine, but know not to play it until you have a substantial amount that gives you a cushion for variance. And I'm sure I'll see a couple of posts in here telling me that they put $40 on a site and had it over $500 in a month blah blah blah. Those are just good runs and only lead to you thinking you are better than you really are. And that just leads to busting out unless you quickly learn b/r management and utilize it wisely.
5. This is something that I'm still learning, and it's tough even though I know it's the right thing to do. Quit looking at your cashier every 10 minutes! Don't look at it daily. Maybe look at it weekly, but I would suggest what Leatherass suggests. Look at it at the end of the month. I still look at it daily. And I know I shouldn't, but it's been so ingrained in me over the last few years that I just can't help it yet. This will tilt you to no end, I know. Just understand that if you know good b/r management and you are sticking to the levels you should be at that you'll be fine barring some catastrophic variance. This is something that I'm seriously going to work on. Actually, I'm good at not looking at my cashier, it's my HEM graph I have problems not looking at. And every time I see some horrible downswing in my graph I freak out and start to think if I'll ever be good at poker. This is bad on the psyche and terrible for your bankroll. You will start to 2nd think decisions that otherwise you would snap off knowing they are right. Make your life easier... quit looking and have some faith in yourself.
6. When you watch poker videos or read books or even when you take notes during sweat sessions or coaching sessions make sure you go over them several times. Don't watch a video once and then think you know it and move on. Don't read a strategy book cover to cover in one night and think you learned all there is to know. I used to do this and it doesn't work. It might work for the first couple of sessions you have while the info is still fresh in your head, but eventually it's going to fade if you don't pound it into your head. Take the time to learn one piece of strategy at a time. And make sure it is a strategy that is in your level of play. Don't watch some poker pro play 10 tables of 2K NL and try to work that into your 4 tables of 2 NL. That won't work. Only watch and/or read material that is relevant to your level.
Here (http://www.cardschat.com/poker-strategy.php) is a good link to start learning everything. It's the Strategy articles in the top right corner of every CC page. Read them.
Well, I hope this helps someone out. I've never been the best at explaining things, so if you have any questions feel free to post them.