Getting your poker play to a professional level requires a lot of patience and persistence, but it also requires that you know when to quit. Not every poker session will go your way, and not every hand will bring in the big bucks.
So how can you know when enough is enough? At what point should you quit a poker session - leave the game and even poker bonuses behind for the day? There are no hard and fast rules that can solve your dilemma, but hopefully, a few specific guidelines will help you out as you play poker online.
How to Decide When to Quit in Poker
While we all wish we could play poker for hours on end without losing our edge and without losing money, we can't always get what we want.
There are two main schools of thought when it comes to quitting in poker.
On the one hand, some players believe that you should only keep playing a good game. That means that if for some reason, you don't have the upper hand in a situation – you should call it a day. Whether it's because you're unable to concentrate, you're tired, or your opponents are that much better than you are – you should leave the table and try again on a later date.
On the other hand, there are a lot of players who believe you shouldn't quit at the first sign of trouble. How will you learn from your mistakes if you don't make any? According to this theory, you should set a betting limit and keep playing till you reach it, whether you're having a successful session or a terrible one.
There are a few types of limits you can set:
- Loss limits – One of the safest types of limits you can set is a loss limit. That means that you will never leave the casino with a major deficit, and you will be able to end the session without any guilt and worries about overspending.
- Hands limits – Before you sit down at a table, you can decide how many hands you're willing to play. Depending on the size of the stakes, you will be able to control any losses if you stick to a predetermined number of hands.
- Time limits – This limit is especially useful to those of you who get burned out rather quickly. If you know that you only have enough energy and focus for X hours of play, you should stop betting about 30-60 minutes before you actually reach your limit.
- Win limits – Even if you're having a great day, you won't be able to remain lucky forever. Some players prefer to leave the table after winning a specific amount of money before they experience any losses. Of course, there are pretty clear disadvantages to this tactic. First of all, there is no guarantee that you will make money in the first place, so the limit you set might not apply to every situation. In addition to that, if you're having a highly lucrative gambling session, this limit will force you to leave the table before you're ready to do so.
Why Do We Need Limits in The First Place?
Some of you might think that betting limits are completely unnecessary. After all, you can always play the game, evaluate your situation as you go, and decide whether to quit or not in the process.
In theory, self-assessment is the perfect way to make such a decision, but in reality – it might not be as practical. When you're in the middle of an online poker game, emotions are running high, and making calculated decisions – especially those concerning your money – is hard.
You might be tired, strung-out, or out of sorts after a long betting session, which can affect your ability to assess your situation correctly. Setting strict limits before the game, however, will allow you to avoid the stress of making important choices while your judgment is clouded, which can save you a lot of heartache and regret.
Knowing when to stop placing bets is an important skill that all aspiring poker pros must possess. And while it sounds like an easy thing to do, quitting the game on time requires a lot of awareness and precision, which are hard to come by!