I have to say, there are a lot of things that are universal in your video. I would like to thank you for sharing your journey. It seems a lot of people who have made it one way or another are moving to mentoring, which is great!
I think it is very important to understand where you are planning to be 10 or 15 years from the start, what principles and values you are governed by as this takes poker out of its gambling image and into a normal career beside sports betting, stock trading or investing. In the end, all of your decisions are risk dependent.
I think what hit me most was poker players are all under-clocked or overclocked in some way! Great observation! Something I have noticed for sure. Yet, it speaks on how deep the psychology in poker can go, as most of the decisions are either over analysed or under analysed training that muscle of decision making and coming within percent or five percent or 10 percent is not easy, but it has been done for ages in other professions. Just not known to the general public. It takes a special breed of people to dive deep down into a rabbit hole and still understand you know very little to base a truly confident decision or opinion about anything you observe. At the same time it is in a way very liberating as you detach yourself from normal social constructs you are in a way become free minded. I will await a book on how people do get themselves into that enlightened flow/zone state grasping so much more than a regular recreational player can or a beginner.
On visualization, it is not only a real thing it makes you so much more confident and it connects your subconscious to your conscious apparatus. Thus creating space where you have solved this scenario or thought about it and the decision will arise without you being aware of it. (Blink, Flow, Master, Endure and bunch of other books talk about these states) . I have experienced this first hand, I have played professionally water polo as a goalie there was not a game when I would not visualize myself stopping the ball, getting that crucial stop, or making that perfect pass for the win of the game. We have 4 breaks and each break, not only I would listen to head coach but visualize how the next period will go, how can I exploit over confident or not confident enough players. Main thing was to win! Every game I was not there defending because I like to stop the ball, I was there to help my team to win! Moreover, when I looked at International video tapes of games, I was not just passively watching, I was actually stopping that ball in that game in my mind, be it a Hungarian, a Spanish or a USA goalie. I would think about it deeply why did he move there, what angles is he trying to cut, what risks is he taking and would I do the same. At last, I would read all the literature I can find on how to defend my net, the drills, not only of goalies but players as well.
As for coaching it has a huge part in any competitive game, the one-one has something that is completely different than just training sites. Not to take away from content here which has immense value. It has a more deeper connection. I have to point out that most of our lives we live unconscious, we are automatically cruising. Only certain events, partners or new relationships that are extremely hard find will bring you out of the Matrix. That is why personal coaching is irreplaceable in my opinion.
As for poker in general, I think high stakes poker will grow to global scales and opportunities will grow with it. A little contrary to what Jason was saying I think, maybe it is something I tell myself so I don't rush to things.
Here are my reasons: there are so many addictive, gambling nations around the World that they will start moving more and more into poker as the popularity grows. Internet, blockchain, crypto and tech that we don't even know yet exist will make this possible.
If you had to travel to find good games and live tournaments a lot of it will be digitized. (PartyPoker, PokerStars) The simplicity and code will be out there and even if you don't know how to code or hire professionals there will be platforms that will give you room space for you to build your own following. Kind of like a youtube or twitch but for poker. I consider poker at the stage of Altavista search engine and Netscape. For someone over 30 probably know what I am talking about. Any ventures start off slow, but than gain hyperbolic movements, take a look at stock market, crypto or startups in general.
My view on it the fight against gambling is over, and there is just too much money to pass up. Coming from X-USSR continue to have black market just makes no logical sense for governments. Although it will be there no doubt.
Good luck, Jason! Truly inspiring video! Thank you!
Sept. 27, 2018 | 6:28 a.m.
We can avoid short deck poker like most of the public avoids bitcoin but I think it is here to stay. This will have to be taken into consideration by content team.
Would be nice if we did start a discussion about just about the biggest televised game.
Few questions that are on my mind and hopefully everyone can pitch in and we can go forward and sleep at night.
- Will short deck make it to America?
- Is this a fud or a real thing like bitcoin?
- How will this effect poker community? ( I can tell you that we all knew what was happening in Macau, what is the reason to televise it now? )
- Is this a way of poker stakes just keep going up? Jason has mentioned it in his interview in Montenegro, stakes keep going up.
- I would love to hear real analysis from Jason of his time there. He is a coach here and a monster in a good way.
I thought I would post something that interests me. My first post and hope I am within the etiquette of poker community!
May 27, 2018 | 1:08 a.m.
For people who are new to this site, like me and still have those virgin dreams and goals of becoming a professional poker player. No matter how crazy they might be. Constructive criticism would go much further. I am looking for an opportunity to learn not only from coaches but from people who have consumed content for a long time. I would not write this comment if I did not see a comment below. As initially, I thought, this was an inside joke between two people who have known each other for a while.
If that is not the case, I would love to hear your true comments and reasons to avoid taking the time to devour more then a decade of knowledge from Ben.
No pun intended.
May 26, 2018 | 11:29 p.m.
Thank you, James ! I always enjoy your deep analysis. Is there a reason why you will stop doing more videos? It seems like there is a trend at RIO, good coaches are leaving. Regardless, I wish you best of luck and it was great to listen to your wisdom and original view on poker and life in general! You will be missed.
May 6, 2018 | 3:40 a.m.
Wow! Great video! Thank you so much for doing this video! It would be good if Cory would do series here on RIO on his book! I think a lot of people would get a lot of value out of it. Without question your duo was perfect! What a great way to start a new year! Thank you very much! Looking forward to your next videos!
Jan. 4, 2018 | 1:46 a.m.
Eat clean, daily exercise, structure, etc. but when you're caught up in the mist of this, it's easier said than done.
I apologize for my improper English as it is my second language.
This state of depression is brutal! I am sure a lot of people have went through downswings and lost their bankrolls. Some I am positive fell into depression. Again, there are different kind of depressions and each of us will have a different experience. In essence it is an extreme change of your state of mind. We are shifting from growth mindset to fixed mindset. A concept beautifully explained in the book by Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck “Mindset” Our inability to see the rewards in life or in our future life due to actions we take today is a form of learned helplessness. Which continues with belief in a permanence of the situation and our constant self victimization. That dialogue never stops. As it is hard not to go on social media and see all those couples kissing, people crashing in poker or simply happy people. Instead of figuring out a play we tell ourselves: I had no control of it, so what happened to me is awful. Furthermore, we conclude that my future life is going to be awful which really brings us to the state of despair.
Our mispercieved reality on mental level will lead to these states. Life is just is! It is not fair to me as well as to you. Either we want it or not this is what we have been dealt. So we better teach ourselves to get comfortable with it no matter what comes our way! We have to focus on a journey not on the result, negative or positive.
Aside from our mental factors at play we are going through breakage in our dopaminergic system. Which has its own influential factors. Not feeling pleasure, is due to our inability to immediately replace the broken neurological pathways. Here I will have to quote below from another great book: Behave: the biology of humans at our best and worst by Robert Sapolsky. As I will not explain it as clear as he can, after all I am not an expert but an observer of my behaviour just like you are.
The dopaminergic system is about reward—various pleasurable stimuli activate tegmental neurons, triggering their release of dopamine.Some supporting evidence: (a) drugs like cocaine, heroin, and alcohol release dopamine in the accumbens; (b) if tegmental release of dopamine is blocked, previously rewarding stimuli become aversive; (c) chronic stress or pain depletes dopamine and decreases the sensitivity of dopamine neurons to stimulation, producing the defining symptom of depression—“anhedonia,” the inability to feel pleasure.
Wait. Dopamine is not just about reward anticipation; it fuels the goal-directed behavior needed to gain that reward; dopamine “binds” the value of a reward to the resulting work. It’s about the motivation arising from those dopaminergic projections to the pre frontal cortex that is needed to do the harder thing (i.e., to work).
In other words, dopamine is not about the happiness of reward. It’s about the happiness of pursuit of reward that has a decent chance of occurring.
This is central to understanding the nature of motivation, as well as its failures (e.g., during depression, where there is inhibition of dopamine signaling thanks to stress, or in anxiety, where such inhibition is caused by projections from the amygdala). It also tells us about the source of the frontocortical power behind willpower. In a task where one chooses between an immediate and a (larger) delayed reward, contemplating the immediate reward activates limbic targets of dopamine (i.e., the mesolimbic pathway), whereas contemplating the delayed reward activates frontocortical targets (i.e., the mesocortical pathway). The greater the activation of the latter, the more likely there’ll be gratification postponement.
So what do I have to do with all this today? Make your bed!
There is a reason why they put so much emphasis on making beds in military. In face of all the adversity you have to find control in small things. That will lead to sense of accomplishment and a start of your productive and positive day.
Check out this talk by Admiral William Mcraven
Admiral William Mcraven
Start doing small insignificant tasks to change your World, change your reality and how you perceive it. Don’t try to lift weights seven days a week and run a marathon. It will not happen and new neural pathways will not form. Moreover, you will fall back into dispair for not achieving what you have planned. On another hand, small accomplished tasks will as you start to do one task on a consistent basis your brain will automomate this task and you will have a sense of accomplishment and want to do more and more and more. Than after a month you will see the progress and will do even more. All because you trained your mind and it is getting stronger and stronger.
In words of David Goggins “Stop managing your expectations“ Only we can decide which path will take, that decision and our vision and our journey that is wha will make us happy no matter where we are or which place we are coming from .
Be compassionate to yourself, be patient. The only person that you have to get approval of is you. The only person you are competing against is you. Stand your ground! Do not act afraid! Stay hard! Gogggins on managing expectations
Nov. 6, 2017 | 12:53 a.m.
I would imagine it's possible for a person who deals with depression and anxiety to still be a solid poker player.
My story is similar to yours. I am trying to move into a new game, PLO. I would be lying though if I said that a solid poker player can play while having depression and anxiety. In fact, I would strongly suggest you sort these things out first. Not only it is dangerous and have psychological and financial effect. It can take you get back to normal months or maybe even more. I am talking from my own experience.
For example, if your legs are injured you don't try to run a marathon. You know that your body not only will not handle it but it will worsen your injuries probably with long lasting consequences. Why poker should be any different? As with any injury you have to take steps or action to heal it first. Then continue with your journey.
I think the best way is to get your brain as optimized as possible and know that your decisions will come from your actual strategy based on the information you gathered, instead of making decisions based on the past events or out of anxiety. To us perception of events will be the same but the reality will be very different. That is why we can have another losing session and have a wave of new waves of anxiety and depression.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 10:43 p.m.
I've dealt with severe depression and anxiety for the last 10 years of my life. Medications did help me truly at times but the side effects from some didn't. That's the worst part about antidepressants, mood stabilizers, and anti psychotics, it's trial and error until you find the right combination that suits well with you.
@thewhiteyfisk I am mixed bipolar type I. I have been dealing with this for last 25 years. I have been on meds and off meds, have been alternating meds, going to maxes and back down. For me personally I am better off meds and with a healthy lifestyle. On the other hand, if I feel I am falling into bipolar depression and am in serious crisis. I know I have to take meds. Sometimes, you have to sacrifice your principles for the better future.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 10:15 p.m.
I agree with everyone on meditation. I have taken Modafinil and coming off any types of drugs are just hard for your body and your mind. You develop subtle dependency that you don’t notice that will hit you once you decide to stop.
The best thing is to pump your natural dopamine through meditation, exercise and diet.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 8:06 p.m.
'your style just doesn't work on this site'
'regs are so random, you can't hand read them'
'hmm maybe actually regs are just like reallly really good and they have poker solved and Dan you're the problem'
'whatever you do, you will lose'
'look you idiot you didn't raise a set and now he's made a flush and it's all cos you're an idiot you idiot'
'you don't watch enough videos, you're behind the curve, you idiot'
bluff fails 'you idiot you can NEVER bluff people on this site zomg you are so stupid'
I would suggest a book by Carol Dweck, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.
Many people have “fixed mindset” —the belief that we are who we are, and abilities can only be revealed, not created and developed. People with the fixed mindset say things like “I’m bad at math” and see that as an immutable feature of who they are, like being left-handed or female or tall. This has serious consequences. The person who believes he is bad at math, and always will be, won’t try hard to improve, because that would be pointless, and if he is compelled to study math—as we all are in school—he will take any setback as further proof that his limits have been revealed and he should stop wasting his time as soon as possible. Whatever potential he had for improvement will never be realized. Thus, the belief “I am bad at math” becomes self-fulfilling.
Philip Tetlock in his book Superforecasting : the art and science of prediction wrote about the one consistent belief of the John Maynard Keynes was that he could do better. Failure did not mean he had reached the limits of his ability. It meant he had to think hard and give it another go. Try, fail, analyze, adjust, try again: Keynes cycled through those steps ceaselessly.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 6:04 a.m.
I see a tendency in many poker players to follow some players they perceive as good only by their winrate. But this winrate comes from limited sample so how we really know it's big enough to be not affected by luck? Worth thinking about.
Psychologists call this the dilution effect. Remember what’s going on here. People base their estimate on what they think is a useful tidbit of information. Which is true at the start. Then they encounter clearly irrelevant information—meaningless noise—which they indisputably should ignore. But they don’t. They sway in the wind, at the mercy of the next random gust of irrelevant information.
Here is my example of biases that i come across a lot. Availability heuristic biases which is a natural tendency to judge the frequency of a class of events by the ease with which instances of that event can be brought to mind.
For example, selective memory. We tend to remember our made hits/bluffs even though they might not work against different/new opponents. So it is hard for our mind to change quickly and realize that we are in a different situation now. The execution must be different.
Another example of this bias is when we tend to think we have the best hand not taking into consideration other possibilities and other strong hands our opponents might have. It is also a confirmation bias.
The deeply counterintuitive nature of probability explains why even very sophisticated people often make elementary mistakes.
That is why poker is fun.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 5:43 a.m.
There are different kinds of bipolar. You can have different cycles, rapid cycling vs. long cycles. You can have mixed bipolar, where rapid cycling is alternating with a long standing bipolar depression. Which is the most dangerous place to be, as bipolar you are most at risk when you are in bipolar depression. All in all, only a professional can make that judgment.
I am a bipolar and going to get treated with meds is not the best solution in my view. It is a temporary solution. I have tried that. If you truly do have a bipolar this is a life long decease that is basically due to your chemical imbalance in the brain. Treating chemical imbalance with chemicals is not a best solution in my view and in my experience. Many of these drugs have serious side effects. Some may be permanent. You have to weight everything before signing up for that.
There are a few things that i would suggest, except exercise and clean eating. Meditation, there is a series by Tommy Angelo on RIO where he goes deep into different kinds of sitting, breathing meditation and mental game. If you are not elite member you can look at this app: headspace. It has different kind of meditations starting from very basic 3 min to an hour meditations. What meditation does, it makes result not that relevant, instead you are more content with your journey. Results will matter but not as much as they do now. It dulls emotions and rearranges the way you see any job or task you are doing.
After all, we are trying to get our emotions under control, by naming them, being aware what is their cause and quickly dealing with them before they grow into a full blown tornado. In poker it is a huge tilt and probably a start of a downswing for some like me for months to come.
We must calm our mind down and reassert ourselves back into the task we are doing as quickly as possible. Otherwise, realize and be honest with ourselves that we are not at our peak or in flow state and should be disciplined enough to end the session for that day.
Last resource I use is moodscope it tracks your mood. Since bipolar is a mood disorder. So you can kind of see your progress or lack of it due to actions you take on all levels. Kind of gives you a helicopter view of where you are. Moreover, if you see the chart is falling off a cliff maybe having a session or going to casino is not a good idea.
Good luck. I hope this helps.
Nov. 3, 2017 | 3:43 a.m.
Paying it forward! This is phenomenal work! Thank you so much for sharing! Congratulations!