July 28, 2011

Getting a real job... probably the best thing I could do for my poker?

I have just been talking to DC's newest coach - Crackmonkey - who is a very nice bloke, check out his coaching profile. One thing came up while talking about coaching with him and it made me realise why I am "stuck" at 100nl, see Luigi's post about this here yesterday. Basically I realised that while I have my own leaks (see my spew thread), I am already quite aware of them, and have a process I learned from Jared Tendler which is very effective with dealing with them and my mental leaks. What has prevented me from moving up as far as I could have done so far in poker is pretty simple, it is not lack of coaching. I have had 1-to1 coaching for perhaps 50 hours with players who play as high as 50/100 (that is NL10k not 50nl and 100nl incase you were wondering!). 

So what was it?

The main thing is that I went off to do the 'poker pro' thing way too early. I had a 35 buyins bankroll and a little bit of extra money spare and that was it. and here I am today 4 months shy of 2 years later I am still hovering around the same limits! In that time I have made over 350 buyins, lots more when I count rake-back, yet still at pretty much the same limit, in makeup in a stake that went bad and have basically ended up in a worse state than when I started, all because of one, very simple, often talked about, seemingly obvious fundamental problem - playing on too short of a roll, not having enough saved up outside of poker and not having enough experience to understand that sometimes you can run really bad when you take shots!

So I've just come to a realization, here I am today... Constantly wondering why I am 'struggling' with poker, why I cant move up, why this why that, refining my game, being brutally honest with myself about my flaws, reading and rereading every poker book I can get hold of, looking for study groups, taking notes on videos, getting coaching, doing sweat sessions, posting hand histories, working on my mental game... and ultimately thinking I CANT MOVE UP! However, this is far from the truth, I have not given myself a true opportunity to move up. Aside from perhaps putting in a mammoth 300 hour month for a couple months straight, I have been pretty much working on my game fairly consistently for a number of years now. 

So it hit me, get a job, stop relying on poker to provide your income for a while, let yourself build up a proper bankroll and stop withdrawing! 

And that is exactly what I am doing now, I signed a job contract today and I am looking forward to having a proper job for the first time... well ever! Not only is it something that actually will be a great experience to do and open up more doors for the future, but it also helps me in my goals of moving up as a poker player. I can build up my BR and never have to withdraw again. I can move up in limits steadily as my natural winning allows and not have to rely on a mega grind or a super heater to pay the bills at the end of the month. Its something that came to me while I was talking to Crackmonkey, he let me know he was the newest DC coach and I checked out his profile. Turns out he has a real day job as a software engineer. I thought I had heard about that from another new coach too, and to confirm my suspicions it was true, blah234 is also a software engineer too! So that is two great poker players, both having real jobs... hmm that got me thinking.. It occurred to me there and then, I have done LOADS of this type of coaching stuff, why am I always looking for the next coach and the next magic pill? and here is the result of my thinking in this post. It then just struck me. You are putting too much emphasis on the short term. If you get a job and work on your game n your spare time, you will be better off. 

My goals for poker have now changed. No longer does poker exist to pay the bills and lifestyle expenses. Poker exists now for the challenge of becoming the best player I can be and moving up to as high as I can get to.

Perhaps getting a real job is the best decision I could ever make for my poker career.

Posted By Acombfosho at 11:12 PM


Tags: hmmm


jubinator posted on July 29, 2011 at 00:23 AM


Nice post, I essentially did the same thing. Am not worried about the bills now, so know rakeback grinding on the C game happens at the end of each month! Good luck with the new gig (what is it?)

delcrossb posted on July 29, 2011 at 02:40 AM


A job is +EV. I can't wait to start my first real job too.

SnappieVouz posted on July 29, 2011 at 08:19 AM


Ey man, I wish you all the luck! I wondered where you where on skype, I added you to the group and you never came on-line anymore

Anyway, good luck man! Maybe you become like Balugawhale, who never was able to beat 25nl and now is considered to be the best coach @ DC

doc.lemon posted on July 29, 2011 at 13:46 PM

Lemon (automobile)

It depends a lot on what job it is and how you enjoy it. I worked in finance dept. in insurance for over a year and I hated it. I am allergic to business lingo, dull elevator talk and staged conversations, and in my eyes it is one big bullshit. It was making me stressed and unhappy, and for me that's the only purpose in life-be happy.For me the only alternative is becoming an enterpreneur, but for that you need a passion and an idea which I am lacking.

But if you find a job that you actively enjoy and that doesn't leave you exhausted at the end of the day, it really can be great to get into it. You mentioned Blah and he enjoys what he is doing AND he enjoys poker, and he enjoys it even more because he doesn't have to stress about results, Win Win anyone? :P

Best of luck to you, personally I go the path of cutting expenses brutally (no car, no parties, no restaurants just poker, gym, sports and a couple $15pub nights per month, many times with live poker), and a minimal side income (ghostwriting).

Palikari posted on August 01, 2011 at 08:18 AM



I have a job, not worried about income. My biggest problem is TIME. But then again I have a family as well ;)

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