First time poster - long time player
I've been reading your thoughts on strategy, and I think it's mostly sound advice for beginners.
One thing I have to comment on is the "tough lay-downs"
If your objective is to play - and get better at - winning poker, it just doesn't make sense to lay down 8s over 7s boat with 88 in the hole. The way that hand played out, there was any number of likely hands
she could be holding - a middle pair, K, 8 or an ace high, which would still make you the winner. Even a stone cold bluff
is likely heads-up in a tourney, depending on your read on her. The most UNlikely, based on the play, were 7 or KK.
Now you laid down, you were beaten, good for you. But in poker strategy
terms I think you made a very bad decision.
What it boils down to is that you made a decision on "gut feeling" - not sound poker analysis. Gut feeling is the enemy of a winning poker player. It's what makes fish fish and chasers chase.
If your hand is 99% sure to win the pot, make the call! You may get one bad beat from the quads, but you'll win the next 99 hands. That's what winning poker is all about.
In general, I don't understand what's so great about "tough lay-down-on-gut-feeling" stories. They didn't make you any money. They certainly didn't teach you any poker strategy. And they seem to overshadow the other 99 times you folded the near-nuts to a cold bluff or a smaller boat.
If you'd gotten a bad beat, you could say "I made the right play and got outdrawn". With "tough lay-down-on-gut-feeling" stories, you can say "I made the wrong play and got lucky"
Sorry if my $.02 sounds a little tough. It's one of my pet peeves. As mentioned, I like most of the advice.