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The beginning of a poker quest!

I’ve been playing this game for awhile. But I’ve also taken long breaks from this game for a while. College, jobs that requires travelling, other hobbies… Whatever the reason may be, I think the one that made me quit most of the time is mainly the fact that I was never actually successful at the game.

I started playing at the 0.10/0.25 tables on Party. Back in 2008 that was the lowest limit available there and the games were fishy, really fishy. But, well, so was I. And without much poker concepts or proper bankroll management, I went broke quite fast, and not just once or twice. I was fortunate enough to approach the game as a hobby and wasn’t too worried about the money lost. Nevertheless it was becoming an expensive hobby, and my pride and competitive nature made me want to get better at the game. 'Super System'-like books and some expensive training sites subscriptions later and I established myself as a small winner at NL50, but along came the hard years of college and I couldn’t find time to play (nor was having the fun I expected).

I was away from the tables for over two years when a friend from college said he was on his way to play poker at a new cardroom just ten minutes away from my house. Too hard to resist, so there I went. I was hooked once again, but didn’t had the time to play as it was my senior year and I was already travelling all around South America for my job, so I restricted myself to only play some live games on the weekends. The games where soft, but I was only a very small winner at best, and all the money won went to more party.

Last year I got my degree in Aerospace Engineering, a new job and some free time. Soon after that poker found his way into my routine and I was playing NL50 and had a good winrate at the beginning, but not much bankroll management, especially because the money didn’t mean as much as it use to. And confidence came and I decided to try my lucky at the NL100 tables, where I lost half of my roll in a couple weeks. Moved down to NL50 and lost some more mainly because I did not want to move down and at that point everything was making me tilt badly: loosing flips, coolers, bad runs, big hands not getting paid, etc. I was becoming a calling station. Luckly I acquired some HM reports knowledge back in 2009 and could see all my stupid mistakes with it and start fixing them to stop bleeding money. Small Stakes was (marginally) profitable once again.
Long story short, I decided to play a mix of NL25 and NL50 for now, even though I’m easily rolled for NL50/100, so I can fix my leaks ‘cheap’, grind up my roll with a conservative BR mngmt and work on some mental game issues. I discovered in my working experience that I work better breaking down long term goals into small deliverables and facing things as a challenge to nurture my competitive side. That’s where this blog comes in: you’ll help me keep track of everything, make public notes on things to improve, see how I progress on each topic and remember the small goals. The long term should be easy to remember: 5/10 by the end of the December! Ambitious, I know, but I’m not worried about the disappointing side of having ambitious goals – I prefer to focus on how pleasuring it will be to achieve it.

I shall update this at least once a week in the hope of making an interesting read. Any feedback is appreciated.

About fstanq

Comments (6) Trackbacks (0)
  1. Good luck. Are you a ROW or a US player?

  2. Hey Felipe,

    Nice to see a SSNL blogger!

    What would you say are your biggest poker/mental leaks at the moment?

    Mine are:

    Poker :- Rushing decisions, getting sticky when ‘they’ constantly show me hands
    Mental :- Self pity i.e endless run bad. Reminding myself that I control how I react to the cards, NOT what cards come out. I can’t seem to accept when my opponent hits every board and I miss them all.

    I use these as session goals (short term)

    P.S When you’ve grinded your way up to engineering manager perhaps you can then skive off work early and join our group : )

    Keep up the blogging pal

    • Nice to see a coment from you Dave.

      I think my biggest poker and mental leak are close to each other: overplaying my hand and calling too much when I souldn’t. Usually in poker I think any unknown is a fish and I can stack him off with TPTK in a dry board. When I’m unable to do it I tilt and start playing more hands than I shouldn’t and become a calling station.
      This also happens when I get set over set, AA cracked and so on. Like if the game owed me the money I lost in a spot where I should have made money. So far I see this as a very hard issue to fix, but what has been helping me a ton is having a .doc file opened every time I play poker that says “JUSTIFY YOUR PLAYS OUTLOUD”. Who sees it thinks I`m crazy, talking english with the computer, but it is really helpful to keep making good decisions.

      I see by your comment that you are sort of inline with Jared’s Mental Game of Poker, right? I use this book a lot to try to fix several leaks I have. The Inchworm concept, warm up sessions (this payed for the book over and over already) and comparing bad plays with previous bad plays are what I`m focusing on for now. Great stuff for a cheap price IMO.

      Btw, I actually have a management position in my current job, but so far it has only made me work harder for the monthly check :(

      I`ll keep up the blog with results and some poker and life insights. Please keep coming over for the read and leave your comments. I truly appreciate :)

  3. Like the blog btw. My next question or maybe something to include in the next blog entry is…….. What kind of bankroll system will you use? (since you have a job you obviously you can obviously be less conservative) How will you determine moving up levels? (certain buy ins, taking some shots when the game is good ect.)

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