Going back to poker might sound silly, especially if you’ve already played so many hands that you’re starting to see pocket aces in your sleep. However, there is a time and a place for rest, and a time and a place for return. Let’s cover both in this guide.
When do you need to take a break from poker? When you can tell that it’s messing with how you run your life. If you find that you can’t seem to really do anything else but play poker, and it’s making you cranky…it’s time to go. You should feel like poker adds something to your life. Even the top poker pros take breaks. Poker can get really intense. Remember — just as you’re trying to hack into the mind of your opponents, your opponents are trying to do the same thing to you. Everybody knows that guy that isn’t a really good poker player, but they seem to always have something nasty to say to the players who are great poker players? He’s doing it on purpose to unnerve you. He wants to throw you off your game. He wants to get you mad so that you stop thinking logically and start playing from the gut. That’s not a guy that you really want to be around. That’s not a player that is looking out for your best interests. So instead of letting guys like that get to you, you need to take a break. Play something else. Bingo? Slots? Scratch cards? There’s a lot of other games that you can play that aren’t so head to head. If you still want a strategy game, you can start working on your video poker hustle a bit more. Video poker is a lot more complicated than it looks, and it should keep you company for a while. It also doesn’t involve other people, which can be a good thing.
What about when you’re ready to return? That’s when you start looking at your mental state. Are you relaxed? Are you stressed out still? If you’re still stressed out, then you really need to think about staying “in rest mode” a little bit longer. The rest is necessary because it means that you’re going to be working on yourself. You’re going to be making sure that you’re healthy and ready to tear it up all over again. This is something that people don’t seem to get. They have to make sure that they’re doing everything and anything they can to keep their mental state up. Look at the professionals. They don’t let poker get to them, because if you do… the game is over. You have a lot of money to win, but you can’t do that if you’re stressing over what everyone thinks of you. Make good poker players, deal with mistakes as best you can, and let the rest go. Poker is supposed to be a hobby, done for entertainment purposes.
Sure, there’s a thrill to winning at poker — we would be lying to you if we said that we weren’t interested in winning. But there’s only so many times that you can win at poker and plenty of times to lose at the game. It’s still a game, and you could have the best hand you could make…only to catch a bad beat and lose a lot of money. This is why you have to make sure that you never bet more than what you can afford to lose. Gambling with the rent money is bad for business. Gambling with money that your children need is a bad idea as well.
Keep your head up and keep playing, but make sure that you do it on your terms. The wins will feel sweeter, and you won’t care as much about the losses. It’s your world, after all!