How can you become a better poker player? Have you ever wondered? Do you go over games and hands in your mind after a game or tournament is over? Do you think about pots you’ve won and lost and wonder what you could have done differently? Maybe you’ve read some poker tips online or even a few good books. While there is a lot of good information in those books and some of the articles you’ll find online, winning poker takes a tremendous amount of effort if you really want to become a great player. Many books talk about betting strategy, pot odds, outs, percentages of drawing hands, etc. Other books explain the different types of players you’ll face and how to handle them. This is all good information, but believe it or not, it isn’t the best information or the key to being a great poker player. The key to being a winner is in your mind and within you and there are three components or steps to unlocking that ability that you have. What are the three keys?
3. Emotions/Self Confidence
1. Memory means different things to different people, but for a poker player it can be used several ways and the person with the better memory has an advantage. Your memory can be improved, in fact, it can be blasted into overdrive. But before we talk about how, let’s look at why memory is important. You’ve just finished a poker tournament or sit n’ go and you want to think about the moves you made. Maybe you think you played a hand wrong or wonder why you got beaten. You go back over the hands, trying to remember who bet what and how they played against you. If you’re lucky enough to remember each hand, maybe you will learn something from it, but will you remember it a month from now? Now, just think about this. What if you could take every hand you ever played and enter that information into a giant computer and have it analyze it all and then give you a report with fantastic suggestions that would help you to become a great player? It would look at every time you raised pre-flop and your position and hole cards. Then it would tabulate the results and break it down based on the number of players in the hand, pot odds, etc. Wouldn’t that be fantastic? I have news for you, it is possible for some people and the method may amaze you. Before I tell you how you can do it, however, let’s talk about Wilder Penfield, the brilliant Canadian Neurosurgeon who performed experiments on the brains of living patients. His experiments revealed that some people could recall vivid memories of things that had long been forgotten by their conscious minds. By stimulating parts of their brains, their subconscious recalled the memory and provided the information to their conscious minds. There is no way to tell how powerful this ability is in you, in fact, some people who think they have the worst memory actually have a powerful subconscious ability to recall. How do you find out and how do you stimulate your own subconscious? Hypnosis and meditation are the two proven methods to your subconscious and believe it or not, both are very easy to do. Professional athletes and chess players use self hypnosis and meditation. As a professional hypnotherapist I used to work with clients who had lost something and wanted to find it. I would guide them into a light state of hypnosis and they would often be able to recall exactly where they had put the misplaced item. They were often amazed by their own subconscious minds. You can use your memory in the same way to go over all the hands you ever played. You may not remember each hand consciously, but your subconscious remembers them and can help you to develop the next key ingredient to being a great poker player…
2. Instincts are important because sometimes you have to go with your gut and make a move. You can’t always have the nuts, sometimes you have to play a low pair or do something that is risky. You may think about it consciously, recalling the betting pattern, etc. But when it all comes down to it, the greatest players have great instincts and play their hunches. How do they do it? Remember what we just learned about memory? Those players know subconsciously what they other guy is holding because they have instincts formed from thousands of hands that are stored in their brains. They may not be able to recall every hand consciously, but subconsciously, they are in there and give the player the feeling, the feeling in his or her gut, to fold, check, call, raise. Instincts can’t be taught but they can be developed using hypnosis for memory and awareness. While your conscious mind processes one bit of information, your subconscious processes hundreds or perhaps even thousands. Do you want to win? If so, developing your communication with your subconscious is the best and fastest way to do it. That brings us to the third step…
3. Emotions are the key to your attitude and your opponents attitude. I’m not just talking about going on tilt. It can be as simple as just not having enough confidence to make that bold move at the right time, or maybe being overconfident and being too bold. Going on tilt is the most dangerous situation for any player. People who meditate or use self hypnosis are more relaxed and more self confident. They also have better control of their emotions.