Almost There with Success and Failure
"The game that most of us play is really very simple. You get 2 cards, 5 cards come up, and you do a little betting here and there. Best 5 card hand wins.
With a game this simple, why do so many people have so much trouble ending up ahead of where they started?
The real game is about people, not the cards in your hand. If you know a person well enough, you can read their hand, and once you know what they have in their hand, the game becomes a cakewalk. The problem is, we have all of these predisposed ideas of who a person is based on ideas that have been placed in our heads by our society. You have to be able to eliminate all of these ideas. Once you train yourself to be completely judgement free, you will become a more complete player. Anyone can read a persons hand based on his actions and seeing common tendencies, ie., a beginning player will commonly bet small when on a draw, and bet big when he has a made hand. What about more experienced players? What does it mean when they bet 2/3s of the pot one time, and than bet pot the next? They are certainly experienced enough to know not to bet the same pattern for the same types of hands. So how can you figure out what they have? Well, get to know him, watch him play. Try and figure out what he is thinking, he has to be thinking something. Put yourself in his spot, what kind of hand would you have if you were betting like that?
Now do this for every hand for every player that is in the hand, for every player at the table, for every table that you are playing at. Try and eight table while doing this exercise. Put effort into every single hand that is played out at your table, not just the ones you are involved in, every single hand. Every time there is a showdown, and the losing hand is mucked, open up the hand history file, and see what he had. Go through the hand again and see if you can figure out why he willingly showed down a losing hand(something that should rarely be done.)
I call this an exercise, but this should be done on every single hand that is played out at any of your tables for the rest of your poker career. This is how you become a real player, then you can ignore the "sng" formula and really start to play. Post flop is where the real game is at, and it is fun to play. Use your bets to pull information from your opponent, and then when you know what he has, trust your judgement 100%. If you think he is on second pair, but will not fold unless you bet your whole stack, then bet your whole stack(unless of course you have a better hand than second pair, which is unlikely since players like us can rarely beat bottom pair), even if it means your tournament is over if you are wrong. Practice trusting yourself, you will be wrong enough in the beginning to doubt yourself, but don't let that stop you.
There is a strong possibility that I am the most active player in the world, and I can honestly say that this is something that I do on nearly every hand. Imagine, 6000 hands a day on average, just watching and learning, with no predisposed judgements of the other players. This is what it takes. Bad beats are no longer bad beats, they are just the cards coming out randomly, evening themselves out over time. What is really important is learning the thousands of languages that different people speak through their actions at the table. Believe me, it isn't some spiritual science, it is listening and learning without prejudice."
I suggest reading the whole post in the link provided above, as it goes deeper into the topic. Till next time!