Wanting to get better; don't know where to begin.
Hello all, short-time reader, first post.
I've been playing no-limit poker for about 1 1/2 months. I got into the game because I watched my girlfriend play online, and the angle of mathematics appealed to me (I study economics and do sabermetrics for baseball). I started off playing for play money, considering I am a college student and don't have too much money to begin with. I read a ton of articles, watched a ton of videos of pros playing, studying the game, etc., and quickly moved up in "play chips" to about 3m. I learned about playing from position, check-raising, bluffing, and the like. The whole mathematical area of the game was simple for me; doing mathematical calculations at the table is easy, and I think it's the strongest point of my game.
Saying this, I deposited $20 on Carbon. I've floated around the $15 mark for a little while (mostly playing low-limit SnG's and the freeroll MTTs). Most of the people who play these jam all-ins with any court card and ace. I've finished first in quite a few, but never to get over my small deposit amount. I seem to be getting crushed by ridiculous hands (losing KK against another KK, villain rivered a flush). I play pretty ABC poker; tight-aggressive, but I mix it up sometimes by playing pocket 8s from the CO.
I understand about variance, have a deep understanding of game theory (have written a few papers about it myself), and EV. It frustrates me to no end that people will go in with any hand (losing AA to 43o, villain flops trips). I stick to my game, but sometimes it's very hard to avoid tilt. I think another strong point I have is that if I know I'm going on tilt, I stop playing and review my hands. My two biggest leaks are not being able to really peg players on hole cards (getting called down on 3xBB raise with them holding 83o does this), and the fact that I despise losing.
I'm posting this because I want to become a better player. I personally don't feel like I'm a bad player, but I don't think I'm that good. I'd rather be brutally honest with myself than lie and pretend I can knock out Phil Ivey at the WSOP
. I just would like to know if I should be playing more suited connectors, 2 gappers, et. al from the button, or how to realistically improve my post-flop play. Or is it more that I'm afraid of losing, and I need to suck it up and realize suckouts happen?
TL;DR - I want to be a better player, and I feel like a donk at times.