A time to reflect | Carl The Dean Sampson

Well after Saturdays debacle, it was time to have a real good think about where I stand with my poker. Years ago when I first turned full-time, I played limit hold’em at a rate of between 50-60 hours a week online. This really starts to get to you after a while and was a major reason why I went into coaching and writing, simply because I was craving variety.

To break the monotony and seclusion of playing poker at home in my own study, I undertook to learn new forms of the game, anything to break it up. The lack of sensory input with online poker is often underestimated and it is far from being in a proper B&M card room with all of the extra avenues of entertainment to grab your attention.

But I have tilted badly now twice in the space of about two weeks and to me this indicates something is wrong with my mental state. This is crucial to winning poker and with less than 10% of players making it pay online in the long term then you really cannot afford to play emotional poker.

Isnt it funny how we all know this but yet indiscipline and tilt is always just around the corner. I thought that after my enforced absence that I would come back fresh and raring to go and for a while I thought that I was. But I cannot afford for my head to not be right in the 25-50 NL because I will get eaten alive in that game.

But poker is a mental game and knowing the theory is only a small part of it. Maybe I am changing as I get older, maybe too much ring game action is getting to me, maybe I need to get out more and do more non poker related activities. Maybe I am slowly losing discipline, maybe I need to play tournament poker instead.

All these questions and more are flying around my head and I dont have the answers as yet. I do not have the appetite for playing infront of a computer screen for 40 hours a week anymore that is for sure. So I am taking a week off not just away from poker but to reflect on where I am at.

OK, so things are going well results wise, but there is something that is not quite right with my mental state and I am going to find out what the hell it is.

Speak soon

The Dean

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