When you dissect an opponent’s game, there are two core categories that you should focus your attention on: their technical ability and their state of mind
This short article applies attention to the second category, ‘their state of mind’.
When new poker players attempt to install a trend of personal continuous improvement, they tend to be unbalanced in their approach.
Too much time is taken learning about the technical aspects of the game, and not enough is applied to the state of mind. Here are some tips on how you can improve your state of mind when playing poker online:
#1 Remove External Distractions. If you are typing an e-mail, talking to friends on Skype, watching a movie, or checking out Facebook when you are playing poker, then you are limiting your ability to apply 100% focus into your game. Switch them off and focus.
#2 Warm Up and Warm Down. Professional footballers have special warm up routines before the match starts. This gets their body and mind primed and ready to go. What you won’t often see is the warm down sessions that happen after the match. This is important to lower adrenaline and calm the system down.
Poker players hardly ever do this. They just fire up a few tables and jump straight into the action, but it is extremely important. Develop a routine before, and after your sessions.
#3 Root Cause Analysis. You can’t manage what you can’t measure. How do you know what parts of your mental game are actually causing you concern if you are not monitoring your game? It simply is not good enough to just stop and think about why you have behaved in the way and then move on.
You need structure. A system that allows you to write down the detailed causes of why you behaved the way you did. Only then can you create counter strategies to avoid a repeat incident.