July 21, 2009

Running bad/good or just natural variance

I still consider myself a new player, do they call it noob??, as I think, from reading 2p2 and the like, you really need around 500k hands to start to know when you are playing well online (live and/or mid/high stakes is different) and when you are just getting lucky. Then it also figures that the reverse is also true, that you need to know when you are playing badly versus when things are just going against you, ie variance. I think that ingrained knowledge can only come from experience, and that in turn can help you stay away from tilt. The feeling of thinking the world is against you is what it can be like to a new player, and can really bum you up. The knowledge that this is part of the game, has happened to you before, and that as long as you keep playing your game things will turn around is invaluable, and is the key to avoid tilt, and staying cool.

Given that many small stakes winning players play up to 30k hands per week, through the year they may have dips and troughs in their graphs that can last 50k or more hands, and that would last over a whole month worth of a small volume player, its really important to keep perspective on your own mini swings.

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