It is not easy being concistent, but I try to stick to my new evaluation system based on "mental game of poker".
I can say that I played well, not A+....B+. I had many situations where I would call for the wrong reasons/poor evaluation 10/10 and lose, and now it has been 1/5. My studytime has been efficient.
I can too say that I did not run well with confidence, not just as an excuse, and my BB/100 dropped from 18k hands @+5/100 to -1/100 in just 6k hands for a total of 24K hands [email protected] nl this month. Played 37k hands total, the remaining @ 100 and 200 nl. Lost most AI`s pf and was outdrawn in most when AI on flop or turn. But I got it in good way more often then not, so... still this is what is hardest to accept. The repeating bad end of variance, and very few upswings for more then 2 months now. I am an estimated 25BI below AI ev at 50nl,18 below at 100 nl, and 4 above at 200nl over approx 125k hands
That said, the mindset is showing improvement, as I am focusing on the hands I missplayed and just run stats on the Ai`s; lost/won and how big fav/dog I was.
I do not feel like ranting or anything like that, though I get frustrated still, I just cope with it better for now. But it is telling me how though this game is and I am not dreaming of the prolife like I used to. I may have had a romantic view of it and it is crumbling. Love the game though.
Sept. 29, 2019 | 7:17 p.m.
The last month then add some has been a real rollercoaster. Had a 22 + BI heater in only 6 hrs of play at 100nl, 3 15+ BI downswings at 100nl and 50nl, and my mental game was falling apart. Nearly cashed out to call it quits, Fortunately Patrick has been a voice of reason, and it triggered me into rereading some books.
One thing I admit to myself is to have read books on advice earlier without actually "reading to understand and learn", but to be done as quick as possible as to get back in the game and somehow expect a different outcome.
This time I read dilligently "Mental game of poker" by Jared Tendler and "the power of habit" by Charles Duhigg. With much emphasis I read what I must learn to keep as foundation for my confidence, and understanding the formation and execution of a habit, and how to break it down to it`s working parts.
I reached a point where I was fed up with my obsession over bad beats and ill luck. And it is a conformation bias, it leads to neglect of information proving otherwise.
I transformed my study habits; amongst my new habits is to video hands where the pendelum swings my way too, where I honestly must admit I took a bad strategic choice, where I was unfortunate and when I had no clue. It has helped alot. it has brought more honesty into my image of self.
I have taken to the suggested performance preroutine of imagining how I look, take action and feel, when at my best game. Much like a downhill skier mentally having a run of the slope prior to the competition. Also helps alot. Whereas purpousless meditation only blanked my mind.
This month so far :
11K hands of nl 100 @ -4bb/100
18K hands of 50nl @ +5bb/100
3K hands of 200nl @ +6bb/100
All small samples I know. But the most important part: my mental game has gained strenght and I am following a good plan as to how I wish to conduct and improve. Idk when Ill post again, it is mostly for my own benefit. But Ill make a habit of not posting if upset.
Sept. 26, 2019 | 9:19 p.m.
Mental game: all time low. The runbad never ends. 35 BI down, can not be bothered to put in goal as it feels it will never happen. Closing the journal for now, does nothing for me and IDK if I`ll be able to play anymore in any forseable future.
Gl @ the tables. Might just cash out. Fuck the badrun.
Aug. 14, 2019 | 11:03 p.m.
Play: 2,5 hrs , 3 sessions
Study: 1/2 hr
Mental game: shit, looks as I am in for another 10-20BI downswing. Cant be bothered to write up bad beats, just many, I was not furious, more numb. Feel a little resignation today. Always been told that one should welcome the subpar plays, the idea being that the odds are in our favour and this is where the money comes from. Not so much as I thought. I know it is temporary, but this is the reason I get tilted when the really bad strategy gets paid off, especially when the same players just gets lucky AF every time. Playing horrendous and sitting with 9 BI. So I am down 10ish BI @ 50 nl in 2 days, my rakeback eradicated and I also played half an hour where one could believe I was gunning for callingstation of the year. No rage tilt, just stupid tilt, it is going to take more time getting used to this. One positive thing dawned on me post session; I would often blow up and play higher, and tilted, after runs like these in the past adding to the damage ( only when playing on my own roll). It is not tempting at all now.
Game: horsehit run all day.
Goal: -1180$ to 100 nl shot
Aug. 12, 2019 | 10:48 p.m.
Study: = no hrs today
Play: 7 sessions a 45 min, half 25 nl midday and the evening sessions 50nl when more ppl where at the tables.
Mental game: seems appropriate to consider it split. With regards to handling beats it was good, and today I was tested. I stick with my mindset of being tired of grudging and digging into my bad runs. So in short, today I ran unfortunate.
What is annoying is some sloppy calls, where I know better, in small pots. In this part I failed today.
Play: no really interesting hands, I took to little time in many small pots and took some-ev spots. Played my big hands as huge +ev favourites, + Sklansky bucks -$.
Goal: -985$ to 100nl shot
Aug. 11, 2019 | 8:24 p.m.
It`s bin weird at partypoker with regards to fastforward, seems every second limit is reasonably populated. Hence I have not played 50nl towards my goal of breaking into 100nl. But yesterday it was running with enough players most the time.
Total hr play : with sessions in previous post. 9 hrs.
Mental game: yesterday I just became tired of keeping track with regards to lost/won AI`s suckouts etc. The excercise has been helpfull, I decided I dont care anymore. I hope this mindset sticks. @50nl I swung down 4, then up 9 and then down 4. Played some 25nl too and booked 2 BI+. B+ for concentration. I am positive thinking I could do this 7+ hrs a day, if my schedule is sound and my eating,excercise habits etc are healthy.
Play: found many +ev bluffcatches, I am sure they would have been passed up before.
Study: started the day with 1 hr. Looking forward to a midday session.
Off to a party tonight so reckon I`ll only play 1-2hrs before.
Goal: change to $ - 710$ to 100nl shot
Aug. 10, 2019 | 9:14 a.m.
Played 6 session a 45 min, 4,5 hrs total.
Ais: Mostly PP vs AK, either side of the coin and lost one where I was huge favourite. Did not affect me at all today.
Mental game: it is not common for me to play for such a long duration. I played 45 min, then 10 min break, and did 6 successive sessions. First I was up 3 BI then lost them, then down 2 and up to break even again. I found that when I dropped the BIs I won I made some " in the moment plays" that I have absolutely no way of knowing if was +-ev. FPS. Need to arrest those better. Maintained decent focus in important spots. So apart from the FPS, I think my mental game was good.
Game: ran into better hands alot, but did not drop entire stacks when so. I think my feel for polarization and range is improved. Taped my sessions, not thinking anything stood out yet as especially good or poor. But runthrough will give me a better take.
Study: woke early and sat down with coffe and studies for nearly 1,5 hrs. Felt great. Will attempt to study early more often, a lot sharper mind vs nightstudies.
Goal: no BI won or lost today. [email protected] 25 to 100 nl shot.
Aug. 9, 2019 | 1:38 p.m.
Had my wife visit ( I work away all week) and took yesterday off playing, but put in about an hr of studies. Still looking into folds that need reevaluation. Enjoyed some quality time with my wife.
Played 2 sessions today. 3x 30 min.
Mental game: slipping concentration every 5 min or so, no apparent reason, had to alter btw sitting/standing to not fall into automode. Also played subpar ranges after two beats, ie calls I do not make pf and a raise I had no reason to commit. Resolved quickly, and found my rythm again. I just accepted that it is what it is within 30 seconds. Happy about that, but not thinking problem solved.
Game: made a very questionable call, levelled myself and it could only be really good or really bad, never inbetween. And I had not a read on the player, so I made the wrong choice. Lost QQ vs A4 AI. Won KK vs AK. Made a few unconcentrated calls that I think are -ev, where I need to sharpen my thoughtprocess and dicipline: mostly laziness and to fast clicking.
Goal: won 1 BI -34 [email protected] to 100nl shot
Aug. 8, 2019 | 10:19 p.m.
It feels right for me to post here on a frequent basis now that I made it a goal journey. Hope it is not annoying.
Played 2 sessions. 1hr +1/2hr. The second session was clearly one I should have not played as I was tired and did not concentrate well/showed poor dicipline. Overaggro in spots I did not need be. It is way more important to me to produce quality sessions over quantum of hands.
AI`s: won a flip, won a AA hand all in on drawy board vs 2p, lost set of KK vs TJ with str8 dr + bd flush. Have not gone through session yet, but know I made some high ev bluffcatches in my first 1 hr session. Know I made some overly aggro -EV plays in second session.
Mental game. Wish I had not slipped on dicipline. Irritated.
Study: 1hr, mostly thinking about spots for ev+ bluffcatching whilst looking through hands, how the range interacts and when villains range is likely out of control. Read some great articles too. And mapped out some of the review I will do. I am careful about this as in the past the mapping of todo`s sometimes fools me into thinking I have done actual work, where as the work is still to be done.
Goal: won nearly 4 BI. -35 BI @25nl to 100nl shot.
Aug. 6, 2019 | 10:12 p.m.
Mental game: better, my wife gave me a good compliment. " I know something has gone not good at poker, but it is less affecting you away from the pc then before". I am pretty sure my kids could not notice. Also having commited to a good plan lifts my mood, as did a little run good. Different from earlier is that I am not waiting for my failure, I am expecting my success.
Significant AI`s: won most of the ones I was favourite, won one AKs vs KK, and ran into AA-KK with AK, KK and QQ respectively, and lost all 3.
Play: 4 sessions. 3 hrs total.
Focus: decently concentrated, but with flaws.
Flaw: missed some river valuebets as I saw monsters where they where not really present. Board scared me more then line.
Study: 1hr watched video of own play.
Got rakeback of 210$ ie 9ish BI, won 6 BI.
Goal: -39BI to 100 nl shot
Aug. 5, 2019 | 10:39 p.m.
Mental state: awfull
Play: 3hr at 25 nl, result -14 BI, lost as 80/20 fav or better when AI before river 9 times, lost as 80/20 dog twice, had boat vs quads, and 2 QQ+ vs floped sets where it was 4b pf and the money went in on flop, lost 35/65 dog topset vs floped flush ai on flop. Missplayed 2 hands, where I was overly aggro. I think because there has been so many bad runouts I am scared of just being sucked out on again and seeing monsters.
It is opening the door to past events and I feel a right mess. Scary how bad one can run over and over. That is 15 bi down at 100nl, and 19 bi down at 25nl over 6 hrs of play. Where my ev is 10ish BI+ at 100nl and 14 BI+ at 25 nl.
Study: 1 hr video.
Goal - 54 BI at 25 nl
Aug. 4, 2019 | 5:51 p.m.
The way I have been journaling here seems counterproductive to me, and why I think posting bad beats offers anyone reading, or me, anything is beyond me. I did some selfquestioning.
My session at 100nl I quit when I made my first identified tiltish call, it wasnt awfull, but one I still find easy to fold in a right frame of mind. I am happy with that.
I will attempt to find a new style of journaling from here onwards.
Play 25 nl until I have a 40BI profit= 10 BI new shot at 100nl, rinse repeat until I stick the landing.
Play concentrated and planned.
Video sessions for review.
Discuss hands regularly.
100+- hrs of play a month.
20+- hrs of study, I have outlined what and how.
Strive towards a professional attitude.
Appreciate my daytime job.
Journal: progress report, badbeats only mentioned as a frequency ie 1,2,3 etc, post hands I find interesting.
Sry bout the whining, [email protected]
Aug. 4, 2019 | 11:56 a.m.
No I am so paranoid I do not think I can play for a week, I will see monsters every where.
Jump down to 25 nl to try and play it off, and within 5 min this happens. My villain flats vs ep open and calls my sqs, calls my 1/2pb on flop and jams over my 2/3 turn. We started out 200bb deep. It is insane, I should have been up 11 bi at 100 nl ev wise today alone, I only got it in bad once, 50/50 twice and any where from 92%-70% favourite the rest. And it just keeps on happening.
Aug. 4, 2019 | 12:21 a.m.
Well, how long was Adam and Eve in paradise ( given u believe fairytales)?
15 BI drop on less then 1,5 hrs sendt me into bad state. Only got it in behind once, sick sick session and gutted, and I made some great folds too. It is really though not to feel cursed. Dropping down, not because the opposition is to good, but because it is increadibly lucky. 50 bi roll should be good, but apparantly I am a shitmagnet enough for it to not hold true. Feel like I need a 50000 BI roll, but then I would have a holiday as i would be rich. Fuck luck!
Aug. 3, 2019 | 11:48 p.m.
The limit. Playing 100 nl is not taking a toll with regards to the limit and mindset about the $. This I am happy with, as I did struggle with it when playing 400nl 2 yrs ago.
The opposition. Not intimidated more bad then good players, but growing frustrated at a few luckoboxes runnerrunner kings sucking out several buyins from me, one in particular: never folds and should be a huge income for me, still I am down 7 BI vs him, I was not behind once. This again triggers my unjusttilt. But I have kept it in decent check.
Self evaluation. I make a lot of mistakes still. Passive aggressive by nature and I missapply aggresion frequently, mostly by slowing down when I should up the pace.
Structure. I play on que with my schedule for breaks, food and water.
Concentration. Slips sometimes when I get delivered several beats in a row, feels as if clicking buttons and not as I am thinking about the hands.
Tilt. I have had a good week as such, no high scale outbursts.
First 10 k hands @ 5/100 bb. Unsure where my ev is with no HH, but I rarely get it in way behind.
Study. I lack a clear idea of what to concentrate on, but will put effort into this.
Aug. 3, 2019 | 1:45 p.m.
Played 100 nl all day, 3k hands at 3,5/100bb. Ev at 9/100bb.
Made one terrible call, it is not profitable ever and it was a slip. More work need to be done on regular breaks, food and concentrationlevel.
Also made one incorrect fold i am not happy with, was super unsure ingame, but post discussion revealed it to be semibad.
Then lost 3 BI all vs AQ with AA.KK,and QQ. All those hands where AI pf and not much todo, also lost QQ vs KK AI pf. Happy to have gotten it in good 3/4, and when ppl play AQ that poorly over and over the games are good.
Still to much of a callingstation in some obvious spots, and I need to respect the small pots too.
I think I can be a decent winner at 100nl.
July 31, 2019 | 10:04 p.m.
Been working on tiltcontrol and have done some thourough scrutiny of ego. I think I am on to something good. So while I wasnt seeing it mid-tilt, I do now and I am equipped with more control ingame imo. The pre session meditation ( I do think it is great for other purposes) did not improve my ingame performance, but a new found emphasis on focus and concentration has. It is funny how it has not occured to me earlier, I was always the giddy child (and grown up). The solution for me has been to make sure I check in on my concentration regularly, helps preventing a lot of autoclicking and snapcalls. In addition to deepening my thoughts about the game. I too video some of my sessions and/or video replays of important hands with reasoning out loud so I can study later and correct my lines where I am commiting mistakes.
Before this week I had recouped close to 20 BI from my downswing @25nl. Then binking a smallstakes mtt has put me in shape to play 100nl with a decent roll.
July 31, 2019 | 1:37 a.m.
Really tired of playing my ass of for nothing. The shit run seems endless and today it brought me down again, just FUCK! It is ending up a badbeatblog and that was not the intention. Wont bother writiing anything until this has passed, it is reinforcing my frustration, only positive is I did not play bad, and when I made one, just one tiltcall for 1/2 pot after 3b w AA, flopping 55J twotone, betting 1/2 pot on flop, 2/3pot on K turn still rainbow, and then have a J river, I just said fuck it XCalled and instashut all tables when he obviously had JK. Session was breakeven, 5 hrs of play, up 7 BI and in 20 minutes all of them sucked out. Backdoor flushes, boats and quads, best one was 77 bluffing or ill merging vs my str8, board was overcards to 77 I had floped str8, I XR and get 4b AI , runout 7 7.
I have a tendency to think I have run bad more then my fair share in poker and life, and when I get like this it just ruins my day. I want poker to be fun, to support my income, to challenge my wits, but not to fuck me over and over. Maybe there is something to learn here, but I am not seeing it right now.
[email protected] tbls
July 19, 2019 | 10:19 p.m.
I know the gameplan I follow is sound and I trust it 100%, can not decide if that or impatience weighed in the heaviest on my decission to do some aggro BR managment. Took a shot at 100nl.
Really happy with how I played and not scared by the opposition, on the contrary. Booked 2,5 BI+. I gauge EV +4-5 BI. Still losing the flips and ran unfavourable with AA-KK in a few pots, still think I lost minimum.
But confident in ability to be in the 100 nl pool.
July 18, 2019 | 3:46 p.m.
Holiday was really good, family time, nice food, nice wine, good books and great venues. Took me 2 days to not think about poker much. Did some meditation on some of the why`s of my behavioural patterns, but looked for the answer in my social wirings; like how I respond to a sudden change in plan, unexpected events, different preferences, mood swings in others and self etc. Some findings of value that relates to poker too.
Poker has not changed though, as mentioned earlier, dropped 30 BI @ 25 nl in a sick short amount of hands, and the next 25K hands has been break even. Losing nearly every AK vs PP all in no matter the side of the coin I am on, and quite often when holding overPP vs underPP all ins when up against short stacks. Other then that I am mostly happy with play, kept my callingstation in check apart from one hand today, and that was my last one of todays session, I knew I had played for too long( 3 hrs no break) when I snapcalled. I know the sample is not large, but it feels like having a shitty day at work. Handled myself better off the tables after sessions. Heard some of my friends are doing really well and it helps me keep motivated through unsatisfying sessions. I am not experiencing a strong sense of urgency, but I every so often it leads me astray. I know my job outside poker is my only income, and I have worked hard to get where I am at in my career, the problem is I am not evolving and I never really liked my job, I just did what became necessary as lifes commitments grew. I am not sure about the core of my drive in poker, but todays feeling of being in the office having a shit day was quite similar to an actual day in the office having a shit day. I put it down to urgency. Hope the unfortunate run ends soon,
July 18, 2019 | 1:06 a.m.
Got back in today and dropped another 10 BI, did not move down to 10nl as I hoped the downswing was over. Best one to knock my balance today was floped flush after I 3b pre Btn vs co vs a crazy dude, he open jams flop effective 140BB w A7ss on 827ddd, I held AKdd, runs out 87. Lost 4 AA, twice with floped set, and I know I am ranting and I know it does not help, other then I hope to write it off. But I feel right fucking unlucky again, and the shitmagnet curse belief growing. Taking a week off to consider if it is worth it. All these hrs studying and learning and then pure idiocracy wins all my $. Insane hands imo. Only positive is I can only say I made one really bad call, literally like: he can only have one hand, but he shold never have it in this line ( offcourse he can have it he does not care about odds or anything), but no other hand makes sense, and I ended up calling knowing I made the read and should fold, classic tiltcall.
Bankroll is cut in half and I am in a terrible mood, not fair towards my family either, finding it hard to walk away from the pc pretending nothing affects me. I am dying and living at the table with my sessions again, did not play awfull today, but an not find enjoyment in such rotten luck. Maybe a sign of a deeper tilt.
July 5, 2019 | 10:34 p.m.
Taking a break again, not 6 months, but a few days. Run like shit and the hole in the ground seem to open up again. 20 BI downswing, 30% bad play from tilt due to my shit run, and the rest just crap luck. First time since I started I swore out loud at the table. The most terrible choices getting max rewards pisses me off, entitlement or not. Shakes the foundation: better plays are supposed to earn the dollars. One hand I jammed turn after 4b pre, wiht topset ~2x pot 300+ bb deep, figuring my villain had underset, he snapcalls with a gutshot and gets it. Then 200+ bb deep villain 4bcall jam w 66 flop 446. Bad beat rants, but I did not promise not to rant, today I am upset. Dropping down to 10nl again after break.
July 3, 2019 | 9:40 p.m.
Dropped 8 BI in 20 min. Lost all from a total of 10 AI`s when ahead and when behind, twice vs short stack and the rest full stack, held AA 2 times and AK 5 times. Got frustrated, but played on and quit the session about 2 hrs after. Clearly detoriated my dicipline and I played below par to lose and focused on recouping my losses, inner voice was not well and these are the criterons I use. Dicipline to system and ranges, timeusage and healty selftalk, all dropped to C level. Not a great day at the tbls. Did not manage to keep whatever I won after that, would at least have gained 2 BI back if not lose and stationlike.
Anyways, [email protected]
July 2, 2019 | 10:01 p.m.
First off: I thought about making this a goal month post. First goal is to make a structured plan concerning my studytime and what I aim to get better at this particular month. I also want to make a system to evaluate my session, A-B-C etc, but need to get better then a hunch.
Today was a split session, 4hrs in total, up 6 BI`s first session. Then second was a BI down. but I really paid attention and think I played hands quite well, just got the worst outcome plenty times. Ie I realize the play was winning, but I happened to get the odd ones out. And that made me feel controlled. Would call it a B session, as there where other things I want to improve on. But still happy with overall.
July 2, 2019 | 12:08 a.m.
Proper session gone sideways with several BI`s lost. Quads are back to haunt me, most often in the agonizing feels like a setup fashion. Then lots of AA-QQ losing in every way possible and not getting much traction. Ah well, tomorrow is a new day.
July 1, 2019 | midnight
Insight into self: if I feel vendictive vs a player it indicates the precense of entitlement. Part of what has increased my mental game strenght is thinking in terms of strategy only, theirs and mine. For whatevere reasons ppl play in a certain manner it is their strategy, consiously or subconsiously derived, I can not get upset at that. My off balance moment only lasted a few seconds and I am so pleased with that I had to post it here. I do not think I would have found my way out of the hole in the ground I was carving without the 6 month break. Funny how hindsight works and how important the structure of the mental game is.
Games are good.
June 29, 2019 | 11:41 a.m.
It is evident to me now how detrimental to quality of play and growth a stuck-with-head-up-arse-selfpittying mentality is. I used to be drowning after a few beats or mistakes. It is now as if I have developed an entire new sense, I can not remember ever grasping so much whilst playing. I must admit that I really like the hudless environment at partypoker.
Mental game has never been this healthy.
Study is with purpose and goal, but I can improve on concentration, maintaining direction and duration. Though I put in work every day.
June 27, 2019 | 9:14 p.m.
I am definetly investing some time into finding a warm up that suits me, repeated cycle of dropping a BI first 15 min into my sessions; snapcalls and ill judgement, soon after that I find the folds with ease and make good usage of my time to think.
June 24, 2019 | 10:21 p.m.
A quadless day :). Session was a rollercoaster, lots of big hands, 10BI swings, got into 9 all ins in the first 1,5 hrs, lost all but one, and that was the one I got it in bad. Really happy about focus, trusted that I chose good actions, not hung up on outcomes, would have been apeshit tilted a year back. Ended +2,5 BI after a total 3,5 hrs of play and felt fresh when I closed my tables.
Playing only 2tbls fastpoker again as I jumped stakes, will add tables as I grow accustomed to the hudless situation and have a tagged more players.
Not having a HUD has in some sense sharpened my reads.
Also the $ are not at the forefront of my mind anymore, it used to be, that and constant checking of session graph. Frees up mindspace.
Looking forwards to summer holiday. My mood is good.