Pressure Kills My Poker Game

After a rubbish night on Friday, I set myself up to set things straight on Saturday.  So far, that hasn’t happened.  Playing a mixture of cash and tournaments I made another loss.  That’s three sessions in a row, a very undesired record equalling tally.  Once again everything felt a bit too rushed.  I think I was too eager to get back on terms.

I think the main thing that is going wrong for me at the moment is the influence of my personal life on poker.  Don’t worry I’m not going to bore you with all that, but suffice it to say that along with a large proportion of society right now, we’re pretty strapped for cash, and poker winnings often make a big difference to us.  That pressure is killing my poker game.  The loses that I’ve made recently are only eroding previous profit, but considering what I’ve just said, I’d have to think pretty hard if that wasn’t the case.

This evening I played only tournaments, going pretty deep in a low buy-in, large tournament (2000+ entrants) and ended up being frustrated with an 82nd place finish.  In terms of finishing position I don’t think that’s too bad, but considering the prize and the time committed, I can’t say that I was exactly thrilled.  I played in six tournaments and cashed in three, leaving myself a few quid in profit.

Whilst it was only a dent in eroding the loses of the weekend, in terms of the time committed there is a silver lining.  I had quite a few mundane tasks to complete which I managed to get done whilst the tournaments were in the early stages, and then got more involved with them once it got nearer the money.  There’s no way I would play like that with a cash game, but with tournaments I think it’s more justifiable.  I still felt that I made enough decent moves based largely on the statistics I had for each player, thanks to the Poker Tracker 4 HUD.

So overall a profitable but not overly successful evening.  The fight continues…

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2 thoughts on “Pressure Kills My Poker Game

  1. The mental side is a huge part of playing poker. Playing those big field tournaments is such a crap shoot too. I’m no expert, but from advice I’ve seen given you should concentrate on cash games, improve table selection (Yes Bumhunt) and make sure you’re rolled for the level you’re playing. Hey, you still made a profit right? Keep going and good luck.

    • Thanks, you’re totally right, it’s so much to do with the mental side. When I’m feeling confident playing well seems easy. There’s so many things that come up from what you’ve said there, but I don’t want to fall into my trap of putting a whole post in a comment! I’m going to post about a few of them, if for nothing more than forcing me to properly think them through. So, coming up will be…

      • Tournament structures and selection
      • Finding soft cash games
      • Bankroll management
      • Psychology – oh so much more on psychology!

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