Poker is a high-stakes game where it takes a lot of practice and time to get a handle on your emotions, especially in a poker tournament. A single bet can put you under pressure and you may end up playing a hand that you should have played differently. Whether you win, lose, or successfully or unsuccessfully bluff, you will go through joy, distress, exhilaration, and all sorts of emotional rollercoasters. If you want to become a great poker player, emotions are the first thing you need to get in check. Just as you need to show a poker face to your opponents, you need to have that stoic calmness within. Here are a few tips to help you achieve your zen when you play poker.
Make a Limit for Yourself and Stick to It
One of the reasons new poker players start feeling anxious is because they have put more on stakes than they are comfortable with losing. One way to avoid this is to always have a predetermined budget that you will not cross no matter the outcome of the game. Don’t take unnecessary risks, even if it is just a private game with your friends and family. Remember, you need to aim to become a long-lasting player, not an explosive one that burns out in a few bets.
Know When to Hold’em and Know When to Fold’em!
There will come a time when you will receive bad hands in a row. And then there will come a hand that shows a lot of promise. You have been waiting for this for so long, you’re so sick of folding and folding again. So, you decide this is the moment when you will jump into action. But remember, there is always a bigger fish! If all the evidence suggests that there is a player that might have a better hand than yours, just sticking to your hand because you want to be part of the action will spell disaster for you. An experienced poker player will always take stock and fold in such a situation. Poker is a patient person’s game. Make sure you don’t give in to temptation and only play hands that feel strong. Don’t pay out of desperation as it will ultimately lead to disappointment in a poker tournament.
Know When to Walk Away
Everyone wants to make a profit when they play poker. But in order for someone to win money, someone must be losing money! And in the beginning, you’re going to be that person a lot! But accumulating a bigger debt to make up for a smaller debt is a dubious idea at best! So, make sure you study the table right and be ready to walk away even if your profits are not stellar. Grinding through till you break even will only increase your stress levels and anxiety.
The best way to be better at something is to have a practical experience of it. But walking into a poker game without any sort of theoretical preparation is a bad idea. You should at least be familiar with the rules of the game and the lingo used by players. Otherwise, you will spend the game like a deer in headlights. Your opponents will easily figure out that you are struggling and will pounce on the chance of taking away your chips. Do yourself a favour, and know all the poker terms and rules before you decide to play a poker tournament.
Dress to Impress!
Now, this advice is for players who are playing a live game. If you play poker online on platforms such as Octro Poker, you can skip this one! Though, dressing up at home can be fun too! Most poker pros use their attire as a sort of a psychological armour. A simple action, such as wearing a pair of shades, can not only make you appear cooler, but will also prevent any micro expressions being read by your opponents. Wear something that makes you feel comfortable. Something that keeps your mind in the zone.
Remember, Poker is a Patient Person’s Game!
Most mistakes are made when you make a decision that you have not thought through. It is always a good idea in poker to take a step back and mull over any major decision. This is easier said than done, as other players might try to push you into hurrying. Don’t give in! It’s your game, and you have the right to take your time and do what’s best for your game, not what’s best for other players in the poker tournament. Whether you play a live game or play online on Octro Poker, follow these tips and you will see an improvement in your game.