No Money, No Problems – Dealing With Poker’s Emotional Deficit

Does being a good poker player mean sacrificing personal connections?

When it comes to getting better at poker, something that most top pros learn to do is disassociate themselves from the money being lost and won and focus on making the most correct play at the best possible time. What comes along with this is sometimes going to be a devaluing of money and even an emotional detachment to protect yourself from the vast emotional swings.

Andrew Seidman, aka BalugaWhale, took to his blog to talk about just this concept where he poses the question – does becoming a better poker player take away from our emotional connections with our family and friends?

Becoming a winning poker player at any level (not just high stakes) requires a significant amount of emotional control. If you’ve ever seen a graph of a poker robot  or a Scandinavian person (I discuss these here), it displays very few downswings because said robot/scandinavian feels no emotions, doesn’t tilt, doesn’t consider the real-world implications of his poker-related decisions. So, in order to become good, we aspire to put our emotions down into a box and be the glorious little button-clicking chip-slinging machines that we need to be if we want to get paid.

Seidman discusses his journey from losing his shit over $50 as a student to being able to get over $100K swings in a matter of hours as he tackles the question of if in his journey to never tilt, he now never feels anything as strongly.

Can it be that in order to win the One Drop, one must be so detached that they have a difficult time even enjoying that win?

Good read: Zen and the Art of Not-Winning a Million Dollars

If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and wants help, call the Virginia Council on Problem Gambling (VACPG) helpline at 1-888-532-3500
published 9 years, 5 months ago • by permalink

Keep Reading:

« Back to Homepage