That State of Mind TM
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Monday, January 02, 2006 


Well, it's been a while... i havent written anything for so long that i'm starting to think i'm running out of things to write about. The lack of games during the last few weeks of the year might have had something to do with it. That won't be the case anymore now, what with the opening of the Poker Room at the Airport Casino. LOTS of action there, lots. Fresh new players from all over, most of them new to the game and some a bit more knowledgable than the others. Oh, and there's also the that state of mind to visit. 2006 is going to be the year of Poker for the good old RP.

And since it is the start of the new year, of course, some resolutions have to be made. I'm going to be listing down ones that i think most poker players should have to start the year right, and of course turn those thin bankrolls into fat and heavy ones. But most of these will be MY resolutions, so feel free to take what might be useful for you and just ignore some useless or silly ones.

Resolutions for 2006

1. I will not limp in from out of position (or do any other bad plays like that.) -
it is pretty obvious why i'm saying this. Bad plays cost money. limping-in premium hands, slow playing, playing "favorite hands" (six and nine...), and the like. Yeah i'll mix it up sometimes but in general i'll be sticking to solid fundamentals.

2. I will not play games above my bankroll. - This will deplete your bankroll faster than you can say "all-in".

3. I will exercise more!- I can't really blame anyone but myself but since i started playing poker, i found that i have gained more wieght than i have ever had in my life! Ungodly hours, a diet of fast food, instand noodles, softdrinks, beer, and lack of time to exercise has put me in the worst physical shape of my life. Time to get back to the gym or at least get more involved in sports.

4. I will not tap the aquarium!- It is time to emotionally detach myself completely from bad beats by novice players, simply because i now know that those situations is precisely why i'm playing the game. Putting my chips in when i have the best of it. And bad beats simply mean that i'm a victim of a lucky draw. I'd rather be a victim of luck than to win with it. There is no need to get mad at the "fish" for dealing out bad beats, because we WANT them to think that they are doing the right thing.

5. I will not play BACKWARDS POKER.- There is an epidemic out there affecting hundreds of poker players. It's called BACKWARDS POKER. Victims of this disease will NOT bet their good hands and BET when they have nothing. They will try to be "cute" and overbet pots, thinking it looks very skillful to "bluff" opponents regularly. i refuse to do that anymore, since betting when i have the best of it will give me good value for my money.

6. I will not put too much faith in TOP PAIR.- Top pair on the flop is a good hand to bet with, but if you encounter a raise or a re-raise, and your hand does not improve throughout the betting rounds, you will surely get in trouble. I've fallen in love too many times with my top pair top kicker only to find out my opponent has two pair or something.

7. I will try to limit checking or calling.- Betting and Raising is the way to go. Aggressive poker is winning poker.

8. I will not try to bluff the unbluffable calling stations.- It is like trying to move the unmovable and stop the unstoppable. It is a waste of time. i'll just value bet my hands when playing these kinds of players.

9. I will not underestimate new faces at the table.- Just because we dont see them play a lot, it doesn't mean they haven't. Yes there are a lot of new players out there, but new faces doesnt have to mean they are new to the game.

10. I will stop trying to be a WINNING player, and just aim to be an EXCELLENT player.- Most of us concentrate too much on winning that once we get comfortable at certain games and limits, we tend to stagnate as players. Some will even treat it as a contest against other players, thinking it's about who's better, who's the "best". It's not all about winning, because if that is what keeps you going, you are bound to be disappointed at a certain point since you simply can't win all the time. I believe that you can be a winning poker player, but not be an excellent poker player. If you play in a certain comfort zone where you win all the time, there is no room for improvement. Someone once said "If you keep hitting your target all the time, then it is either your target is too big or you are too close to it." On the other hand, being an excellent player will assure you that you will win most of the time. Self improvement and a critical analysis of your own game will do wonders. Poker is not about winning, but rather about making the right decisions, and making the right decisions consistently requires extensive commitment to improving oneself all the time.

There are many more things i can think of but these are the one just off the top of my head. We have the whole year ahead of us, and it's gonna be one helluva year for poker in this country!

Watch your back! hehe.

awesome bro...if i could only be as thoughtful about my game as you are about yours...

it's a state of mind...

made me cry...

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Quote of the Day

  • The best poker I've ever played has always entailed peace. A relaxed comfort. Eyes open, ears open, radar up. Absorbing my opponent's every message. Taking them as they come. Not mixing what those messages are with what I want them to be. It's like an aerial view. A view from above the myriad luck-dependent reactions of those many people who never gain such a peace. And when you gain that view, that peace - when you'd rather have the truth, no matter how disappointing, over a false hope, no matter how desirable - then you're a player. The hand you're on slips into a stream of thousands of other hands, no one of which, because of your lofty view, seems unduly important, no false fearful emotions rise within you. When you gain the peace of lofty perspective, you're a player, and when you're a player, you're free.- from "King of a Small World" by Rick Benett
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