Does Personality Affect How You Study Poker?

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In this article we get into what’s practical for if you either:

a) Find it challenging to study poker off the tables or;

b) Find you mostly work by yourself.

How can you better apply your limited time-energy to do the best you can?

Have a listen or read below:

The Losing Stress Podcast Ep 60

Hey guys, it’s Chiggs. It’s another Losing Stress podcast. On this episode, which will likely be very direct, probably & quite short. I want to talk about personality and learning. There’s something that I see from speaking to a lot of players now; speaking with players that are working with all kinds of different personality types in poker that perhaps people miss.

And that is how much of an effect personality has on the way that you actually go about learning poker.

I don’t like studying poker off the tables

It’s going to be very helpful for people that struggle with motivation or struggle with actually trying to study and work on poker off the tables.

Because if you find, you’re somebody like this, somebody that doesn’t like to watch videos or finds it difficult to actually stick to watching them or, if you find you’re somebody that doesn’t like to work with software tools, then it’s important to realise that it’s very likely to be personality based.

You are very likely to be working with a personality type that isn’t suited to working with these tools and these areas to get better at poker with.

And so if you don’t like using video courses, if you don’t like using software, you find it difficult to actually stick your attention in that area, then it’s very helpful to ask yourself,

“Can I go about learning poker in a way that does, in fact, suit the personality type that I’m working with?”

And this means turning more towards actually working with other people.

As you’re listening to this now, can you simply ask yourself, “Do I find that I learn better through working with other people?”

If that’s the case, then it’s best to, first of all, to be honest about it, to realise that, “you know what, I’m probably wasting my time, spinning my heels, trying to go about doing well in poker, through activities that I find difficult to stick to.”

“So what if I actually went about getting better at poker through avenues that actually suit the way that my mind learns best?”

And, so when it comes to learning from other people, you, of course, have a few options.

One is to learn with the network that you’re already involved in. And most people in poker go about this in a fuzzy or inefficient way.

Because when you look at it, very simply the most efficient way to do this is to connect with someone or another group of people and make it something that you do consistently.

Maybe that’s recording your session. Maybe that’s recording or having other people record their sessions. And then watching them and analysing them in scheduled meetings.

What I found is when I’ve suggested this to others players on calls, that find it difficult to learn by themselves, they realise that this is a great idea. But many, don’t put this into action.

Perhaps because there’s some form of resistance internally for not wanting to disturb other people. Or a feeling that other people might not be as interested in getting better at and doing well at poker as you are.

But what you find is if you actually reach out to people, you typically find they actually are.

And going to your network, is the simplest and cheapest way to start to incorporate this.

The other, of course, is to start to get coaching. And for a lot of people, when it comes to coaching, there’s a reluctance to want to go ahead and pay for it.

However, that tends to fade when you realize that you’re going to have to input money into improving and getting ahead of the curve in poker.

Also, when you don’t ignore what we’ve mentioned here: that you’re working with a mind that works best working other people.

And thirdly, the fact that very often coaching, if you can find the right person, can really move you ahead of the curve.

All those three factors together, once they combine through understanding, make you take action to find a coach that can move you ahead.

I like to work by myself

Now, if you’re listening to this as somebody who, in fact, does like to work by themselves, say using software tools, using solvers, studying from courses then it’s still worth pointing out something very useful – the benefit of learning from feedback.

And this perhaps doesn’t really need to be explained because when you look at it very simply, it makes sense. It makes common sense.

What feedback allows is uncovering certain blind spots that the mind doesn’t see.

Because it narrows on a certain perspective.

It narrows on looking at poker in a certain way and continually applies that theme.

What feedback provides is a different perspective and from looking at poker or the way that you play with a different perspective, you can then start to see areas that you’re perhaps not taking the best action on. Where faults lie in the thinking process in the mind.

And the thing is you only really start to apply this, you only really start to seek feedback, when you look into this factor that runs internally of, “I already know best.”

You’ve got to look at this very honestly. – Is this a factor that runs in the mind often?

And if it does, can you see that it is in fact irrational? Because if you run continually with that theme, you’re not able to uncover the things that you’re not seeing. Simply because all language structures, all sentences or quotes or other forms are taking a certain perspective.

And so when you’re continually assessing poker in a certain way, and you believe you’ve got the right approach to poker, you have to understand that that’s taken a certain perspective. And if you’re only developing in that area, then you’re neglecting other perspectives.

And so if you want to be as good a poker player, you can possibly be then feedback is essential. It’s vital. 

And the world of poker has understood this at  some level for some time. For example when it comes to adopting database analysis.

That’s of course an activity in providing feedback to yourself. And hopefully an objective form of feedback.

If you’ve got the skills to assess your database and see where your strategy is perhaps misaligned. then that’s a very useful tool that you want to consistently be doing.

The other form of feedback you can provide is ,of course, through other human beings.

And when it comes to this quite obviously. you ideally want to be getting feedback from the best possible person.

Specificaly this means, the person that has the most experienced mental models for the variant of poker that you’re playing in.

And I think this is a good place now to conclude what we went into here.

Summing up

What we went into here, isn’t anything necessarily groundbreaking. However, if you find you’re not doing, what’s talked about on this podcast, you have to recognise that it is something personality related. It is something mind related.

And so if you’re somebody that doesn’t like to learn using videos and software tools why not go more all in on the learning strategies that are linked to working with other players?

And if you’re somebody that finds that you do work well by yourself, learning from courses, subscription sites, or just like to work on solving tools by itself, can you be aware of the internal factor with the ego?,

“I already know what’s best.”

And how this leads to irrational actions when it comes to you actually getting better at poker.

This is a fine point to leave this. Take care and thanks for reading, I’ll speak again soon.