Lessons for TheWakko - Oct 2020


We wait for the external to change us internal

Often people will say, “Once I’m at this level” or “When I’ve made this amount” or “As soon as I’ve managed to move to a different country” then I will be happy, satisfied or successful. This often leaves them feeling angry, frustrated, or impatient in the current moment. These feelings that are cause by these things not happening yet, leaves them in a negative state. The state you are in will determine what thoughts or feelings you accept, believe to be true, and surrender to. So, when we feel scarcity for example, we will be more aware and highlight information that comes in that resonates with that state because its equal to the emotion. Now why is that a problem?

Our state, that in this example is negative, leads us to think more negatively. “Why aren’t we there yet, the world never gives me a break, it’s because of PokerStars” etc. This ends up leading to more negative feelings, which in turn leads to a more intense negative state, leading to more negative thoughts, emotions, etc. You can imagine the downwards spiral this can create. “You feel what you focus on” and the state you are in determines your focus. So, we first have to change internally to be able to change the external instead of the other way around.

Something for you to become aware of this month for yourself; observe your feelings, and link to the thoughts associated with these feelings. Then ask yourself, are these going to bring me closer to my poker goals? If not, find a replacement that will.

In the end it all comes down to the same things

While working on the upcoming course, (currently 1000 slides in) I started to get the feeling that I am just repeating myself. When analyzing if this were the case, I did in fact see that I have discussed various different topics. However, I keep coming back to the same 4 things.

  1. Time you’re trying to make the most +EV action.
  2. To do that, we need to know where our value is going to come from given our hand and the circumstances.
  3. We now have identified what we are trying to achieve with our current hand.
  4. Take action, how am I going to achieve the result I want. This in turn loops back to nr 2 and always depends on the situation.

All I was doing when making chapters was explain different situations where our value would come from something different, and there for it felt like I was repeating myself. What it comes down, poker is not that hard if you understand what to think about and what the impact of factors has on your EV. This way, all you have to do in game, is estimate which one applies

Flow states, flow states, flow states

As mentioned, many times over, we have ranges in our game (A-game, B-game, C-game). The range we are in will determine the EV bb/100 we are making. How big the gap in winrate is between your A-B-C game depends on how much knowledge you truly mastered (and not “know”).

The game we are most likely to bring to the table will depend on our preparation, the state we are in and how fatigued we are. As mentioned above, positive state will make you highlight positive things that happen, which in turn will make it feel like more good stuff is happening to you than bad stuff. This makes it easier for you to start off in your B+ game. You cannot expect to play your a-game all the time, so it is important to strengthen your B game. However, A-game, also known as flow states, aren’t a coincidence. They happen when you come well prepared, energized, in a good state, and with realistic expectations for what will happen in your session.

Do flow states occur randomly to you? Then try to analyze when it happens and what caused this. While doing this, make sure to focus on internal factors, so not, a good run of cards, since this is out of our control. Once you have identified these flow triggers, start making sure as much of them are present in your routine and daily grind, taking control over how much of your knowledge (and more) you are able to bring to the tables. 
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