This is a discussion on Thought Process within the online poker forums, in the Learning Poker section; What’s up everyone?
My mind runs all over the place during the hand. What’s his range? Did he limp? How much did he bet in
You are not alone. Many of us have much to consider during a hand.
When I play, it is my goal to be the aggressor going into the hand. I believe it is a good psychological advantage. That way, when I c-bet, if villain does not fold it is easier to place him on a dray, top pair or over pair.
If I am not the aggressor, hardly would I ever stay in the hand if I do not have a great flop.
Also, it is advisable not to go up against big stacks with marginal hands or hole cards that are not premium. Their range are so wide at times that it is difficult to put them on a hand.
Hope this helps. It serves me well when I am patient enough to stick to it - lol
My mind runs all over the place during the hand. What’s his range? Did he limp? How much did he bet in relation to the pot? What’s my range look like to him?...
What are some guidelines for a good thought process, checklist, or something else?
Start with concentrating on just one player. I would recommend the person to your immediate right as this is who you will be aiming to play the most pots against since you almost always have position on him. Once you have mastered (or at least become reasonable competent) being able to process all of your thoughts, do the same thing to the person on your immediate left, since he is going to want to play most pots against you. Build up one at a time until you are able to process all of that information for every player.
"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill
I noticed that my reading of the game was much better when I stayed focused during the whole game even when I was not in game. It is easier to manage or analyze the game of your opponents. when you play a tight game and you have a good image at the table. if your opponent shows too much strength on the flop and preflop. it's easier to fold without regret.
I think this is where studying outside the game helps. You'll probably add a few details from in-depth, offline study that will be folded into your game instinct. Eventually, you'll have a standard thought process.
If I were you, I'd start with a fixed set of questions and adjust per session as you find you're missing information or thinking too much.