Effect of record keeping on mental approach

D

danvanan

Rising Star
Joined
Jun 11, 2008
Total posts
19
I certainly understand the importance of record keeping to get a handle on one's progress. I'm starting to wonder, though, if spending a little too much time or care thinking about the profit graph can interfere with play.

I keep reading that it's important to not be too results oriented - to focus on each hand independently, and not to let yourself being affected by being in an "upswing" or a "downswing." But when that graph starts heading south, it's very hard not to let it get to you - where all you want ot do is see the trend start moving in the right direction. And, if I really analyze my play, I think I start pressing too much, getting too uptight.

Sure, if I didn't look at the graph, I'd still know I was in a losing trend, but it would be more abstract. I think that, because graphs are so specific and concrete, it gives my losing streak real substance and verification.

Does anybody else have a similar feeling about the profit graph?

Dan
 
zachvac

zachvac

Legend
Joined
Sep 14, 2007
Total posts
7,832
Well assuming you've been winning before the downswing, it can sometimes be nice, especially if you've had downswings before. You just look back and see "it's been worse, I had a downswing like this before but I got out and back up, I can do it again". You just have to realize that they'll happen and you can't try to compensate for them by trying to win big, that if you let poker run it's course you'll be going up before you know it again.
 
PokerVic

PokerVic

Visionary
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Total posts
822
I probably look at my daily stats too much, but I'm careful to always compare the results to my overall (and/or monthly) BB/100 at the same stakes. Even when I have a bad run, I can see that I'm still a winning player over time, and it helps give me some perspective and avoid tilt. It also keeps me grounded when I have a better-than-average run, because I realize that those stats are not sustainable over time.
 
Stick66

Stick66

Legend
Joined
Nov 10, 2005
Total posts
6,374
I certainly understand the importance of record keeping to get a handle on one's progress. I'm starting to wonder, though, if spending a little too much time or care thinking about the profit graph can interfere with play.

I keep reading that it's important to not be too results oriented - to focus on each hand independently, and not to let yourself being affected by being in an "upswing" or a "downswing." But when that graph starts heading south, it's very hard not to let it get to you - where all you want ot do is see the trend start moving in the right direction. And, if I really analyze my play, I think I start pressing too much, getting too uptight.

Sure, if I didn't look at the graph, I'd still know I was in a losing trend, but it would be more abstract. I think that, because graphs are so specific and concrete, it gives my losing streak real substance and verification.

Does anybody else have a similar feeling about the profit graph?

Dan
I definitely agree with the idea that too much worrying about tracking can affect one's game. For a while, I switched to updating my numbers every 4-5 days. But then I discovered that I need to update every day for tax reasons if I'm going to make a career of playing poker.

So now, I have designed my spreadsheet to have separate pages for data entry and for profit calculations. On one page, I enter my totals for the day. Then my total BR is tallied and listed in yellow so I can't see it. Then on another page, my daily profit is calculated and I try to only look at that page every few days or so. So now, I have solved my tax prep issues and my over-tracking issues at the same time.
 
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