Changing some habits, starting to exercise, eating less processed food – all of these can affect your daily poker success. If you are a poker professional, you need to consider and pay attention to these factors outside of your daily life. It is certainly possible to win by not paying attention to these things; most people of my generation have won without thinking about their surroundings. Today, however, I can’t imagine a professional athlete being successful without striving to continually develop further in as many areas as possible. Other factors that pros need to worry about relate directly to the moment of play. How do you handle meetings? Have you started clicking other links, listening to music or chatting? Do you start playing games engrossed until frustration strikes? The escape options are endless: chat with someone, change the background, choose a different song, “man, I’ve never heard this song before, I just did a quick Google look to see who the artist is”. TV, Netflix, Youtube, Podcasts, Facebook, WhatsApp – just choose your escape route. In the end, the disappointment of that moment of enjoyment will always be there, just one step away. There are so many things we can control when it comes to poker that I find many players flippant when they mention “variance” as a key factor in the equation. Forgive me, I respect variance and its impact, but I believe the famous variance will become less and less relevant if we pay due attention to points we can control, both on and off the table. I believe there is nothing better than absolute focus. Therefore, the least that professional players need to do is to require themselves to remain focused and not distracted during the training process. I suggest you be professional and give your full attention to your work. In this configuration, research and consequent technological development are also improved.
So put all your energy into factors you can control, accept that complaining won’t lead to aces refusing a river meeting, and face the fact that no one cares if you cry. You have to work hard to survive and thrive in a sport as competitive as ours. The space for pure players is getting smaller and smaller, and the rule of professional players is getting earlier and earlier.