In movies, poker and other table games are often portrayed as fast-paced matches, filled with action where players win millions of dollars left and right. But in real life, online and mobile poker look completely different.
Unless you participate in high-caliber tournaments, the wins you can get from a single poker session are rather small. Therefore, if you want to make a career out of poker, you need to possess two highly important qualities: focus and patience.
The Importance of Patience in Poker
When you start playing poker, and you need to gain some experience, there is only one thing you can do: practice, practice, and practice some more. You will have to play hundreds - if not thousands - of hands before you get sufficient dexterity levels to become a pro.
That means that you will have to play low stakes games for months on end before you will be able to make a real profit out of the game. Only highly patient players, who are willing to work hard and without quitting halfway through, have what it takes to take their poker game to the next level.
In addition to that, a lot of newbies naively believe that the more hands you play – the higher your chances of winning. But poker pros know that sometimes you have to fold and wait for a better hand or position to win big.
Not many players are capable of folding when necessary, as pride and overconfidence can get in the way. Moreover, when inexperienced players keep losing time and time again, they get frustrated and make bad betting choices without realizing they should have folded. But if you do manage to wait patiently for the right cards to come your way – you will be able to raise your chances of winning exponentially.
How to Work on Your Patience Levels
If you are prone to making impulsive decisions, you have to work hard at becoming more patient. You can achieve your goal in various ways, but here are a few ideas that might help you out:
- Make a list of all the things you need to pay attention to at the table. Go over that list before every play, and make sure you have all the information you need before you make major decisions.
- Force yourself to wait and in the meantime, analyze the situation. Take at least 20 seconds before each move to stop and think about the game. Even if you wholeheartedly believe you know what's the right thing to do, take your time, and make a logical and calculated decision.
- Slow down your breathing. Relaxing and getting control over your breathing and heart rate can help you clear your head and slow your roll.
Focus in Poker
If you are truly invested in the game and you want to make a profit out of betting, you have to focus most of your attention on getting better at poker. That requires a lot of dedication, which is a trait that is often hard to come by.
Each player employs a different focusing strategy, but here are a few ideas you might find useful:
- Read a poker guidebook, dissect relevant tips, and try then out at the tables.
- Watch others play and try to analyze the situation from your point of view.
- Dedicate a set number of hours for practicing every week.
- Avoid distractions when you practice or learn about the game.
- Watch videos and gather tips from experienced players.
If you manage to put your heart and soul into your poker play, you will be able to become a good player with time.
Take Your Poker Play to the Next Level
To become the best poker player you can ever be, you have to practice patience and focus. Do you think you have what it takes to become a pro?