Some starting questions:
a) Name some people out of your social circle/family/environment that love to complain. Do you like being around them? Chances are you don´t.
b) Who are the people in your your environment who always have problems and don´t get things done. Are those people also the same who believe to get “unlucky” all the time ?
c) And then do you know those freaking luckboxes that you want to punch in the face, because it seems like they seem to run good for their whole life? And everything they touch turns into gold? It could be that they are fooled by randomness
By the way, this book is an absolute must, if you don´t know it already. Back on topic, yes they CAN just be lucky in poker, but how does it help you in practical terms? Does it make you feel better about yourself? Or does it decrease his level of achievements if he was just hit by the positive side of variance? Actually I think there is partly a method to the madness…
How to become the “lucky” one in 3 steps
1) Have the mindset of being privileged
I´m not talking about fooling yourself. And it’s not like you can change this in one day. It’s probably some core confidence in yourself that builds up over time.
2) Actively imagine, envision your goal
It’s so funny. Since I was a very little kid, among my siblings I´ve always been the one who worked. I was in 5th grade, earning myself some extra change through hard work. And then this little asdfkajslf 8) aka my little brother would make almost as much as I did. I probably worked hard in the garden. And he went shopping with my mom, got new shoes and would randomly find shitloads (it’s all relative of course!) of money either lying on the street or at the cashier in a parking garage, where people would often forget to take their change. Our mom first didn’t believe him, and she thought he might be a long finger (=thief), until she witnessed it with her own eyes over and over again.
Needless to say, nobody else would be able to find change. It was something magical about him.
And if there was no change, his natural smile made every employee in most stores want to give him candy over and over again. Most of the time, he didn´t even have to ask for it! That guy, let me tell you, has some serious game haha! It’s a natural gift, which I don´t possess.
Long story. I´m not only telling you this to show what a cool brother I have. This little kid (at that time) had the most positive mindset you could think of. He was expecting to find money. That was the difference to me. Now I do NOT believe in magic or some new agey fluff. I still believe that when walking to a payment machine, chances are same in % if you´ll find money or not. The difference between him and me is that he developed intuition and motivation, while I didn´t care to much about looking behind every door for change. He constantly put himself into spots where he could get lucky. And then he probably ran good in addition to that. And then the power of self affirmation comes into play, where he actually believes to be the lucky one, which reinforces and quadruples the effect.
Now let’s translate this mindset to poker. When Phil Ivey pushes 5bet pushes 25o all-in preflop and everybody folds, some say he´s just lucky. I used to think that way. Now I just believe that he has trained his intuition and instincts incredibly well and knows when and when not to pull the trigger.
There are people out there who constantly put themselves into spots where they can get lucky. They are motivated. They got the fire and the will. Watch some youtube videos of Jamie Gold, when he won the world series of poker. It is widely assumed that he probably can´t even win online NL50 games. But at this main event, he KNEW he was the chosen one. Whatever he did, it worked. He could pull off the most retarded and obvious bluffs. His opponents would fold. It was like magic around him. Yes, he ran good. So what? But he expected it and it made him play better and outplay the competition. He paralyzed the whole table and made them paranoid. And the one time they play back, he got the nuts again…
3) Constantly put yourself in the right spot
Believing that you got what it takes. Envisioning how it would be. The first two steps. But they lead to nowhere if you don´t give yourself the chance to “get lucky”. It’s a numbers game. Some will always run better than others. But the main difference between most people is that one group never gives themselves a chance to get lucky, while the other constantly does exactly the opposite.
One might misinterpret my post and start buying lottery tickets. By being “lucky” I mean – speaking through analogies – putting your money in with a 80-20 equity edge, but managing to win it, thus, “getting lucky” by 20%. Doing the right +EV move and holding up. Outside the poker table this could mean having a cool business idea. The business idea and starting it is usually +EV, although only 10% survive. This means, it can hit even the best idea. But if you constantly put yourself in such a spot, one time, you´ll fly, far, and skyrocket high.
Other parts of the Poker Mindset Series: