Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Enjoying Adversity

It's amazing the things you can find on the Internet.  I recently got pointed to an interview on YouTube with a guy named Josh Waitzkin.  If you don't know that name, well, I explain it in the video, but suffice it to say that Josh has a pretty big brain and he knows how to use it.  I'm going to embed the YouTube video with Josh's interview in this post below my video, and I'd highly recommend watching it, he's a very interesting person.

And as promised, here's the interview with Josh:

So the next time you find yourself in a playing situation where you feel like complaining about the conditions ask yourself, "If I complain about the conditions am I missing out on a chance to extract an edge over my opponents?"

Monday, February 14, 2011

Paying Off Bad Play

Well, anyone who has logged significant time playing will start to see lots of "bad" plays.  I saw one in a recent deep stacked tournament where someone open shoved 200 big blinds under the gun.  Now true, they successfully picked up the blinds (I was in the big blind), but I think anyone who really thinks about poker would not call that a good play.  What if someone had called though?  That bad play would likely have been rewarded(the open shover had KK).

In this video then, I talk about taking steps to hopefully avoid rewarding such bad plays:

Monday, February 7, 2011

The Pain is The Reward

One of the eminently frustrating things about poker is the lack of correlation between action and result.  When playing golf, if I aim and swing correctly I will strike the ball well and be rewarded with a good shot.  Correct actions receive positive reinforcement, and that is a system which operates in harmony with our brains.

When playing poker however, correct plays do not necessarily correlate with pleasing results.  In fact, correct plays regularly lead to bad short term results.  As a result, poker can cause a dissonance in our brains which we must overcome to operate in this system.

So recently I had an experience that may provide that positive reinforcement that our brains crave ...