When it comes to having consistent success in the game of poker, mental toughness is often what separates the pros from the amateurs, the contenders from the pretenders. If you need help with your preparation, focus and skill development, be sure to read on and learn more about the following mental tips that can greatly improve your game.
- Accept Frustration
If you are going into every single game that you play expecting to be at your absolute best, this is a mindset that will only lead to a great deal of frustration. Even the best poker players find themselves stricken with streaks of bad luck and when we become distracted, we stop caring as much. But when you accept that frustration and cruel twists of fate are merely part and parcel of the poker experience, you are able to remain focused and
- Keep a Short Memory
When bad luck happens or you find yourself on the losing end of a few hands, self doubt can start to creep in and erode your confidence. However, the best poker players are those who can keep a short memory and remain in the zone at all times. To get the most out of your experience, you must maintain a very short memory and be committed to playing your very best game.
- Get Plenty of Rest
While some will be tempted to go out and play as many hands of poker as possible the night before, those who are experienced in the art of maintaining focus know just how important it is to get a full night of sleep. Don’t let stories like Phil Ivey’s deter you from taking the proper steps in your preparation. Remaining focused at the table is all about being well rested. Otherwise, you are forced to pump your body full of caffeine and sugar to remain alert, which will put a major damper on your game.
- Don’t Broadcast Your Feelings
You might be feeling particularly lucky, you may not be, but one thing is for sure: your opponents do not need to know anything about your personal feelings. Opponents will view this as a sign of weakness and become emboldened as a result. If you are on a hot streak, this is not the time to get cute and announce it to the table. The less your opponents know about your true feelings, the more they will fear you.
- Make Sure Your Personal Life Is In Check
One of the worst things that you can do is play poker competitively when real life events are weighing on you. Not only does this disturb the process of preparation and research, but it will also keep you from playing your best once the big day arrives, so don’t be afraid to step away when you are experiencing personal difficulties.