From ancient times until now, believing in spiritual factors has been a way out for humans whenever they encounter unexplainable problems that are beyond their understanding. In poker, we often encounter situations that are outside our normal thinking habits, when we play correctly but still lose, our opponents play incorrectly but still win, and instinctively, we turn to spirituality.
That said, spirituality is still very important in poker. Just in a slightly different way than you might think:
- If a person believes that you overpower them and is afraid of fighting you, bluff them a lot
- If a person believes they are on a lucky streak, as soon as they win a big hand, they will continue to play with all types of cards. Attack this wide range of theirs.
- If you find yourself clearly losing to an opponent often, instead of blaming it on your being overwhelmed, think about what is in his playing style that counters your playing style. Actively thinking about that problem will help you improve your playing style a lot.
- If a person thinks he is losing because of bad luck, take the opportunity that he is tilting, exploiting that unstable mentality.
- If a person believes he is lucky (because he has a mascot, because his cards are up…), he will play very confidently. Limit bluffs when playing against him, but strictly value bet.
However, Poker is an intellectual game, so playing Poker requires technique, skill, and experience in playing cards. Don’t rely too much on spiritual factors but put belief in ourselves and our abilities .
Goodluck and GG!
You just made me realize that poker goes beyond cards and technical rules! Understanding opponents’ beliefs can indeed influence my game. Now I see there’s more than just luck and technical skill involved. I’ll start paying more attention to these spiritual nuances in my next games!
I believe as well in feelings and spiritual stuff during pokergames. When we know how to explore them, Its a very powerfull tooll to overwelm the adversary.
Thanks for the post. Keep it up!
Many players are like Michael Scott from The Office, when he said, “I am not superstitious, but I am a little-stitious”. Also, this post made me remember a quote that I’ve first read on the Phil Gordon’s Little Green Book, and it says something like that: “Being superstitious brings bad luck” hahaha.
So true! When playing poker, we must eliminate these beliefs at all costs, and of course, pay attention to those who believe them. Curiously, I am a Christian and I do believe the proverb that says: “The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the LORD.”
However, this not necessarily determine how I play. It helps to accept the results. But I keep taking decisions based on math, because poker is a game of numbers, and I might not win this time, or may not win this tournament, but if I keep playing better than my opponents, I will get there.
It is true that many of us let luck affect us either we like it or not, no matter what side of the table we are sitting on. It takes a considerably cool head to play in a neutral way. Like maintaining objectivity is something that is simply not built-in in the human brain.
We Asians are still superstitious, but it’s not superstition. Just a small corner of my Poker playing strategy after a period of experience
I feel the same way, you can always rely on this to overwhelm your opponents
Interesting post, dangbaonguyen.
Some things only apply to Live Poker of course. And some of the things are hard to know unless they tell you or show you.
But I agree with your list of responses to the situations listed - in general.
I going to expand on just one point you made:
The one thing that is extremely profitable is to identify a tilting player because even the best poker player can begin to question the randomness of cards being dealt if they get several bad beats and/or coolers in a row. I have seen very rational persons believe that they are being unlucky for a different reason than just variance (myself included).
So in a poker landscape where players get better and better when it comes to strategy and math - the ability to identify and exploit tilting players is more important than ever since they start to play in an unbalanced way.
Most of your money in poker doesn’t come from how good you play but how bad others play
And when players are tilting they can sometimes play shockingly badly.
I think we have all seen players going all-in with garbage after being outdrawn earlier for example.
So psychology really is the not-so-secret weapon in poker (even online).
So reading the player often beats all the GTO knowledge in the world.
Some of the tips are good . I will also try to take advantage of sb who is afraid of me , if he thinks I play tight and very good hands I might try to bluff him . If he believes he can win every hand and he plays every hand I will try to exploit this , make him go on tilt , pay me . There are some other factors in poker generally, but mainly , if we want to tell the truth, the main factor is RNG . So even if you play with the spiritual element or anything else , if RNG doesn’t want you you won’t get too far …
I have experimented with meditation before playing poker and had some success with it.
If it’s a coincidence or not, who knows, but a clear, quieted mind can certainly outperform one that is,
let’s say, cluttered and distracted. The meditation I used can be found on Louise Kay - YouTube
I really appreciate this post! Too often, we get mad when we suffer bad beats. You’ve reminded me how important it is to remain objective and study your opponent’s tendencies and guess at their mindset and motivations and then use it against them. You raise a lot of situations that come up often at the poker table that you can really see versus opponents you play against frequently. I wouldn’t necessarily call it “spiritual” but it is definitely psychological and behavioral. Thank you for the interesting way to look at these situations!
Thank you first for your post and agree with your comment of belief in ourselves & abilities. However, I get both from the spirit.
Great post. If you would elaborate on this topic, you could make the poker equal of “The art of war”!
Very nice and interesting topic!
It is always important to trust in your own strength but is also necessary that you understand the psychology of the game very good. There always spots in poker games where you can win against villains even though your cards are scrap and this is can be a weapon!
So in my opinion this is part of strategy, psychology and knowledge - a good mixture of this components is the key to a solid poker play.
To me, ‘spiritual’ always implies love and compassion. Therefore, at times, I have helped other players who clearly need a bit of help.