This is a discussion on How do you deal with Poker Stress? within the online poker forums, in the Learning Poker section; I'm a regular mid stake player at 888 poker. Today though, I decided to take a shot at 5/10. Played about 2700 hands today within
I'm a regular mid stake player at 888 poker. Today though, I decided to take a shot at 5/10. Played about 2700 hands today within two tables. I have never experience such low variance before, I mean all my draws constantly kept missing. In the near end, 400 hands I lost all my winnings in one day. Now it wouldn't usually brother me but since the pot were so huge, it's killing me physically. My muscles ache. I have such a huge headache and I feel angry. I eventually tilted my last 200 winnings away. After a session I usually sleep and feel better when I wake up. But this time it's different. What do you guys do?
You stepped out of your comfort zone, lost more of your bankroll than you would normally & now your pissed. Examine your play, did you adjust your game to the different level of competition?
You acknowledge you were taking a shot, why & what were your expectations?
Why did you overreact when things didn't go as intended?
Taking a "shot", is a common occurrence & results such as you experienced are much more common than winning big.
Analyze your play, your results, your reactions & use the experience to become a better player.
Hell, your already ahead of a majority of online players since you didn't automatically blame your results on "rigged online poker.
Good luck in the future & have fun.
I don't seem to have accomplished much with my life so far-----------, but I'm sure making good time.
Hi Soldier. I think we all "take a shot" every now and then - If your are a mid/ low stakes player, its a bit of a dream to hit it big and win the big one, possibly by running good, good play or shear luck. However, the down side is that it never works or perhaps it does, one in a million!!! Poker stress is only bought on by ourselves, we cause it so the only way to get over it is to walk away and leave it alone for a while. Try to forget the stress and remember your good plays/ sessions and work out what happened to you and why it did. This is how we learn to improve our game but also how to minimise the effect stress has on us. The difference between us and "top" professionals, apart from the money is how they deal with the stress, they have it as well they just treat it different. Like some of us, they know how to "double bluff", "triple barrel" or "5 bet" or any other play you can name, but they treat the stress as a play so have a way of playing against it.
Gl and thats enough rambling from me.........................
Let's say that it's the bottom of the ninth, two outs, the bases are loaded, you're down by a run. You see the pitch perfectly, catch it right on the sweet spot . . . wind blowing in from center field makes your hit run out of steam at the warning track. What do you feel then, stress? Of course.
Stress is not unique to poker, which may be why a leading mental game coach comes to our game from golf. Stress is a tough nut to crack, no one solution fits all. Some people meditate. Others workout. Others just plain quit. Your solution is likely to be somewhat unique, but if you love the game, worth searching for.
All your draws kept missing? chasing draws doesn't sound a reliable strategy
in fact you shouldn't be thinking about your draws at all should be thinking
about individual players as I'm sure you know already.
Sounds like you run well and run bad and it evened out over so many hands.
their are alot of good players that break even or worse because they haven't got consistent discipline and control they always get involved in the cards.
De-attachment is key
The ones who make are the ones who can take the hits and keep on coming back playing their same game over and over.
I always say if your good enough to run deep time and time again, then your good enough to claw back your chips in the same session.
Ask yourself are you a donktard or a poker player? If it's the latter then remind yourself only donktards tilt and rise above the noise, be great
Anything is possible... When you Believe
The main way I try to manage stress is by understanding how much I can take without being unduly affected at any given moment, and then staying below that level / amount. The tricky part is monitoring myself since my stress tolerance moves up and down, sometimes very quickly, even just a matter of moments.
Very hard to recognize your own tilt. I finally manage it now. I'm not saying I'm not tilting anymore, but I do admit to myself when I'm tilting and however the good game is and how big the fish is you have position on --> Sit out! What helps me is splashing cold water in my face and (this is embarrassing) pep-talking in the mirror lol
When I hit bad beat+tilt, but can't stop playing, I switch to freerolls.
Then I watch myself, how my tilt groves and what I do in response to that and allow myself to play as stupid as I can until tilt wears out
This happens many times when I try to move up. If you take it as a lesson learned, that you need to adjust your game when moving up the skill level AND if you are going to move up, then your bankroll must be larger to allow for the natural variance in winning/loosing.
When this happens, I usually drop down to my previous level, or if it really upset me, drop one level below that and play there for a while. This helps restore my confidence and if I do go on tilt, it won't be as expensive on my bankroll.
First and foremost stay at the level you can beat and the game you win at.
You brought on the stress and tilt by stepping out of your comfort zone.
Did the same as you recently and tilted of 25% of my bankroll.Went back to the level and game I can win at recovered all my losses and are now hitting new levels of success.
My current buy-in level is $70 and I must have 10 of those buy-ins to play that level.As my bankroll increases I buy in for more if it decreases I buy-in for less.
You will find bankroll management such as this will help you cope.
If you continue to feel stressed, sit out for a few weeks.The game is hopefully fun, not torture.
I punted racehorses in my youth and went through periods of stressthe same as you are experiencing.It is not pleasant and eventually I gave up backing horses.
The very best of luck and I hope things sort themselves out for you.
Focus on the process, not the luck. Did I play correctly? Everything else is just BS in our heads!
I was so many times in situations like that so i feel you completly...Workout is the best way to deal with the sress, because all that negative energy have to go somewhere right? ...Hangout with your friends seems like a good solution, or come here and share with us Just don't let poker affect your social or love life
As it was said before don't play at such high limits you can't afford. Sure thing playing poker is stressful because we win or lose our money. But it shouldn't be stressful like that. You should enjoy playing poker. You won't last long with having such emotional level
I have a hard time letting it go when I lose in that manner also. It usually sticks with me for a few days, no question. Time heals, but it often can be difficult getting to that point for me. I usually try and do something else that will occupy my mind for a while so I don't obsess over it. Need to get engrossed in something else for a bit.
Players, people handle stress in different ways but identifying what triggers stress is the first part of understanding a mental mistake, and then attempting to fix the problem. For example, there are many different forms of tilt and I am working on this because of what it does to my game when I do not flex my mental muscle to keep emotion and ego in check otherwise, I am a mental fish.
When dealing with stress from short term variance or long term variance for example, your day of short term bad results think of your game from the point of when you started. Poker is a journey of however, long you are playing. When bad short term results through variance of not hitting the hands or getting out drawn etc…; for example, your experience of variance was eventually going to happen that day just happened to be the day it occurred. Because variance or bad results from a poker session are going to happen accepting this will allow you to think differently about your results of any given session. Otherwise, if a player does not look inward or understand what the problem is stress will always be there.
Instead of analyzing your game from one session analyze your game as a whole over the course of your journey rather than one day. It would be absurd for any player to take one session and let that define their career because you have improved since the journey began. This is just one day of your journey and tomorrow is just a continuation of that journey. One bad day should not change this. Imagine the bell curve, the right side of the curve is your “A” game the high point of the graph is your solid game, and the left side of the curve or the back end of your game is the “C-“game. When you fix bad decisions from the backend of your game then you “inchworm” the players “A” game forward and improving the overall game. If a player can assign or see why things happen through a lifetime journey stress can be minimized.
If you are going to do a hand history, pull up clusters of twenty hands at random, analyze your decisions from the beginning of the hand, and then honestly look at the decisions made from the beginning to the end of these hands. Illustrate to yourself of how this was played as if you were setting at the table this will help to understand of how you were playing at the time this was happening. If you are able to identify mistakes from decisions then when you go back to the table you can start to identify when you start to make these mistake again in any given session; then you can identify when you start to tilt as an example.
Your brain is then working the same way as when you are playing when you take this approach. Because the normal way most do hand histories that important part gets lost; what happens is the brain does not recall what the person was thinking when making decisions in real time from normal hand histories. Most look to the results for information rather than what the person was thinking about when making each decision from start to finish in each hand analyzed, and then narrating each hand as if they were setting at the table. This simulates playing the hand, then talking about the hand this part will carry over to talking each decision through each hand played in every session. This helps with not making mental mistakes because you are now consciously focused on each decision made. Looking at information from different perspectives can also let the player focus on something new and stress will be minimized as well.
When a player fails to identify what is causing tilt in their play then accumulation tilt will occur just like you experienced this one day. The buildup of emotion over a period of time because of bad results; even when you quit without banking a winning session then the next time you play and bad results happen again accumulation tilt starts from this point forward with all the past results from other sessions as well. Identifying mental triggers will keep the player focused and relieve stress.
The brain only processes what has recently happened even if you have taken time off. When you set down again, then something bad happens, then the results of the past are triggered; and accumulation tilt is now starting again. This is why when a player is running good they expect to win just the same way a person running bad only remembers they keep getting beat, then expect to lose because of all the accumulation of recent losses, and it is now in our hard drive. Mental toughness will let the player understand this is happening and now can relieve themselves of this emotion, stay focused at the table, and now the brain is freed up to fix other mental mistakes.
Players make the mistake of attributing good results solely because of their skill and bad results on outside sources from short term results, and do not hold themselves accountable for any mistakes they may have made because of their perception of their skill(or the lack of skill of an opponent) or mastery of the game. Attributing variance to outside sources of not hitting draws getting out drawn for example, this variance is out of a players control, the cards fall funny for everyone, but what is in control; the ability to make the proper decisions when playing hands and then live with the decisions. Make corrections from bad decisions, stop chasing losses, improve on handling variance, understanding what makes us weak at the table as some examples. Poker is physical because of needing to be in the best shape possible so, your brain can work optimally at the table, 90% of the game is mental and this part, everyone has the ability to improve in this area. When players are honest about their decisions and how well they played their sessions then stress can be minimal as well. Glad to have met you and have a happy holiday.