Planet Mark's Blog. Thoughts, News And Strategy For Poker Tournaments Of All Size

Plugging Poker Leaks By Thinking In Years

Today’s post is about a subtle shift in perspective that can save (or make) you a lot of money at the poker tables. I have introduced the idea of thinking in years using 2 non-poker examples – and then after that return to 3 areas of your play and show how the financial rewards of working on them may be a lot bigger than you think.

Thinking in years gives you a bigger incentive, and increases your motivation to work on things. Here is a recent true example based on Sugar.

I have become increasingly aware that processed sugar added to food is a health hazard. While I like to stay fit and healthy, I am not a fanatic by any means. This awareness did trigger me to analyze my intake though.

Between sugared coffee, cartons of orange juice, the occasional muffin, breakfast cereal and yoghurt type sweet deserts my sugar intake was very high. I worked out about 20 tea spoons a day on average (shocking really, having thought I had a generally healthy diet).

Now, if you think about cutting 2/3ds of this that is 13 spoons a day @ 5 grams each or 65 grams.

Here is the change that made me take action, I worked out how much this was over a year.

65 grams x 365 days = 23725 grams of added sugar – just picture 24 1kg bags of sugar on your kitchen surface and you’ll get the idea. I did not even drink sodas or eat chocolate bars.

plug poker leaks by thinking in yearsExample 2: Money!

I will keep this one vague, though it does work for just about everyone. Monthly bills add up, and a couple of years ago I did an analysis of these costs which ranged from utilities (not too much choice here in Hungary) to hosting costs and monthly subscriptions to services I barely used.

Each saving was trivial, $10 here, $20 there and maybe $39 at most.

When they were all added up my ‘financial spring clean’ had netted something like $185 per month. Nothing to get too excited about really… Until you work this out over a year.

That collection of small savings became $2200 per year (probably less, I have lapsed a little since then!). This is enough for a great new computer, a vacation or even some extra to tuck away for when the online gambling webmaster business deals me one of its regular blows!

Thinking In Terms Of A Year – How This Can Help Plug Your Poker Leaks

Right, back to the main topic of this blog, winning more money from the poker tables.

Here are three simple ways you can take a small change now and make this into a big difference in 1 year’s time.

#1: Get A HUD: Many players think these are just for the pros and not really needed. I do not agree, even a recreational player should get one set up. For example, that player you though was loose and dumb, he just 3 bet you big and you are considering a 4-bet bluff. Instead you check his stats and find that he is very loose, yet calls pre-flop raises and never 3-bets. Your HUD just saved you running into aces. That same HUD shows you someone c-bets at 95%, allowing you to take a pot you might have given up once a week. It shows you that you are playing super-tight at one particular table while you are multi-tabling, allowing you to use this image to steal a pot.

Even at the micro-stakes these kind of HUD reads will add up. I think I am estimating low when I say that you can easily win $25 more a week here. That’s $1200 a year you could be adding to your poker bankroll…

This article shows you 3 places you can get a HUD for free, so now you have no excuses.

#2: Table, Game And Seat Selection: Yeah, I know, tedious… But wait, when you look at the benefits of spending 10 minutes at the start of your session selecting the fishiest game – instead of jumping right in, then you will soon see how this can add up over a year.

Even keeping the numbers small you’ll see the benefit.

You play somewhere like iPoker where a lot of players are new and cross over from the sports betting brands instead of PokerStars (add $1 / hour). You check lobby stats to see where the wildest games are and join those instead of just sitting at the first few tables with a seat (add another $1 / hour). You reassess each table every 30 minutes to make sure it is still the softest available (50c per hour).

OK so, all that effort for $2.50c per hour?

Now look at the whole year.

You play on average 20 hours per week, that’s $50 a week more cash in your pocket or a cool $2600 per year. You’ll be able to move up levels faster too – thanks to your bigger bankroll.

#3: Stop playing while tired or drunk… I actually need to do this more often myself, haha. If you enjoy some fun gambling after a couple of beers then good for you – there is nothing wrong with this for entertainment reasons. Lets say on average you play when your edge is negative due to tiredness or whatever once every 2 weeks, and lose $30 on average.

Just finding an alternative pastime for those moments – for example a video game or moving down to the frequent player point donkfest satellites might save you $20 of those. $10 a week over a year is $520.

Add that to the other changes above and you made $3800 and saved $520… that’s pretty impressive for small changes which really should not affect your overall enjoyment of the games.

GL at the tables, Mark

PS: I Thought of one more related area after writing this post.. Business. I have been guilty over the years of neglecting little income streams, a tool that only makes $100 per month for me, or a site where I just get the odd player and a couple of hundred dollars fizzles to nothing... I estimate I have let 10 of these $100 streams go over the years, lets say half would have gone away on their own as make it $500 a month... yep, thats a head-smacking $6k a year gone from not focusing on yearly results. Could almost be a post of its own when combined with paying for services nor used any more and overpaying for domain renewals...


If you enjoyed this blogpost I would genuinely appreciate you taking
the time to share it using the ‘Recommend’ button – thanks