Joined: Aug 30, 2016
  • Threads: 7
  • Posts: 30
May 11th, 2017 at 7:21:46 PM permalink
Today was the most negative variance I have experienced so far, albeit in my short BJ career of about 9 months. I found myself -200 units after 4 shoes and most of it was from 1 single shoe which got hot early.

A few years ago I was a semi-professional poker player and I had a huge problem with tilting. If I got sucked out on or if I made a mistake I would go to the baccarat tables and try to chase back my losses. Needless to say, this dug me into a huge hole. I kept track of my poker results and I was a winning poker player but a losing gambler altogether. That was 3 years ago and I've since gained enough poise to not do this anymore. It took such a toll on me that I quit poker because I don't believe I can stop myself from tilting.

Which leads me to today, I had that same urge to tilt my money on baccarat BUT I found a way to stop myself. One of the most critical tests in my BJ career and I passed but BARELY. I literally stared at the table for 10 minutes and the dealer asked me "what's wrong" lol. As humans we're all emotional, as a counter it would be much easier to be a robot and I've yet to meet one AP who hasn't dealt with tilt in some sort of fashion.

I'm pretty pissed about losing that much in a single session but in a weird way I'm so happy that I brought myself to leave without putting a dollar on a -EV game.

So how do you professionals, semi-professionals, and recreational players deal with tilt? Is it easy for you? What are your coping methods? Please share your stories.
Joined: Feb 4, 2015
  • Threads: 13
  • Posts: 3634
May 11th, 2017 at 7:46:05 PM permalink
I just accuse the casino of having a tilted table and cheating..... ;-)
Joined: Aug 18, 2014
  • Threads: 30
  • Posts: 2549
Thanks for this post from:
May 11th, 2017 at 7:55:21 PM permalink
Tommy Angelo's work is great for the mental side of poker and gambling in general. Life in general, really. I can dig up a good youtube interview with him later.

Barry Greenstein had a great passage in his book.

Scenario 1) You have the best session of your life. You are elated and ready to go. You catch AA one more time, and stack the other big stack at the table with it, moving this session into the stratosphere. This is enough money to pay off most of your debts, or buy a car you never thought you could afford.

You go home, have sex with your wife/gf. She gets pregnant. The kid grows up to be a junkie.

Scenario 2) You have a session like the one you described, or worse. You're too depressed for sex, but the next time you do it, you produce a kid who becomes an MD.

Extreme, but plausible. Every thing is part of a bigger chain of causes and effects and you really have very little idea where it will all lead. Something as small as one gambling session, win or lose, has a pretty unpredictable outcome on your overall welfare.

e.g. every modern WSOP winner needed very peculiar sequences of things to happen, not only in the event, but in their poker and normal lives, and many of those things seemed bad at the time.

While everyone who has been in a fatal car crash could have been saved if just one little thing was different earlier in the day, or in their lives.

Anywho, if you can actually internalize that fact, small stuff should bother you a lot less. Next time you win big, helps to think about how your loses were a part of that sequence. Then realize the next part of it could be getting hit by a bus.
Joined: Feb 6, 2012
  • Threads: 35
  • Posts: 396
May 11th, 2017 at 8:26:59 PM permalink
I had the same problem as you. But my negative expectation game was craps (a game which a lot of delusional people think they can beat).

I hated being backed off tables, playing cat and mouse with dealers and pit, etc. Also, other professional gamblers would expect a loan if they went bust, kind of like a community thing; and they hated me because I never gave out loans.

So one day I said screw it, I'm going back to school and started a business after grad school.

On some things, it's ok to move on.

If you're disciplined and smart enough to be an AP player, you're disciplined and smart enough (and enough of a risk taker) to start your own business. The +EV is much higher and you get much more respect.
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
  • Threads: 1474
  • Posts: 25971
Thanks for this post from:
May 11th, 2017 at 9:15:03 PM permalink
I've experienced this after every recent Super Bowl safety. Four safeties in seven years, what are the odds? After each one I bitch about it for years. I'm still milking those safeties for sympathy, even though its been four Super Bowls since the last one.
“Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” -- Carl Sagan
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
  • Threads: 237
  • Posts: 15987
Thanks for this post from:
May 11th, 2017 at 10:06:50 PM permalink
I strictly limit the money I bring to a casino. Can't tilt what one doesn't have.
I leave $20 in my car so I have money to eat or something on the way home.
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.

  • Jump to: