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Brutal Downswing - Losing Confidence and trouble dropping down - Advice?

    • metza
      Joined: 28.01.2012 Posts: 2,220

      This is my graph for the last two months. As you can see at the end, luck has been fucking me in the asshole for the past week, without fail. I felt like I really got my game sorted, and was doing fairly well, but the speed at which I'm losing money now has just totally shaken my confidence in that, I don't know if it was just down to getting good cards or whatever. It took 1.5 months to win that much, and now in under a week all that work is gone.

      I moved up to NL5 during the upwards part of this graph, but haven't dropped down when I was supposed to because I didn't feel like I was playing badly. I think now, after losing a decent chunk of my bankroll, I need to reevaluate and seriously considering dropping back to NL2

      Has anyone got any advice? Do you guys reckon I should try to play through it or just take a week break or so? I don't think I'm playing my best, maybe 80% of normal ability due to slight tilt, but I am still playing well enough to be a winning player IMO. How to believe in my poker abilities when this crap is happening, because according to results now, I am not a winning player...?
  • 11 replies
    • metza
      Joined: 28.01.2012 Posts: 2,220
      I think part of what is getting me very tilted is the nature of these bad beats, even when I flop the nuts I can't win. Did I do anything wrong here?

      PokerStars - $0.05 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 8 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      UTG+1: $5.10
      MP: $6.69
      MP+1: $2.00
      Hero (CO): $6.33
      BTN: $5.45
      SB: $4.82
      BB: $2.00
      UTG: $5.00

      SB posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

      Pre Flop: ($0.07) Hero has A:heart: K:heart:

      fold, UTG+1 calls $0.05, fold, fold, Hero raises to $0.25, fold, fold, fold, UTG+1 calls $0.20

      Flop: ($0.57, 2 players) 4:heart: 9:heart: T:heart:
      UTG+1 checks, Hero bets $0.27, UTG+1 calls $0.27

      Turn: ($1.11, 2 players) A:spade:
      UTG+1 checks, Hero bets $0.79, UTG+1 raises to $1.58, Hero raises to $5.81 and is all-in, UTG+1 calls $3.00 and is all-in

      River: ($10.27, 2 players) 4:club:

      UTG+1 shows A:diamond: 4:diamond: (Full House, Fours full of Aces) (Pre 30%, Flop 2%, Turn 7%)
      Hero shows A:heart: K:heart: (Flush, Ace High) (Pre 70%, Flop 98%, Turn 93%)
      UTG+1 wins $9.84

      PokerStars - $0.05 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 3 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      SB: $8.47
      BB: $2.75
      Hero (BTN): $5.96

      SB posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

      Pre Flop: ($0.07) Hero has K:diamond: K:spade:

      Hero raises to $0.15, fold, BB calls $0.10

      Flop: ($0.32, 2 players) 9:heart: K:heart: 2:diamond:
      BB checks, Hero bets $0.23, BB raises to $2.60 and is all-in, Hero calls $2.37

      Turn: ($5.52, 2 players) 5:heart:

      River: ($5.52, 2 players) 8:spade:

      BB shows 6:heart: 2:heart: (Flush, King High) (Pre 18%, Flop 28%, Turn 80%)
      Hero shows K:diamond: K:spade: (Three of a Kind, Kings) (Pre 82%, Flop 72%, Turn 20%)
      BB wins $5.29

      When players this bad are beating me, it makes me feel very crap and want to just give up, because it feels like no matter what I do I will lose. It is a serious mindset problem and it would be cool if someone knows some good mental tricks when facing this sorta shit.
    • Warrior21
      Joined: 29.09.2012 Posts: 13
      Hi i am playing 2NL at Pokerstars also. I know exactly how u are feeling right now. In the past i was tilting like hell even sending messages to support complaining to my terrible bad beats. The thing is, we dont have the time to question the integrity of the games. U have to put volume and u def need to rebuilt your bankroll from 2NL again imo. So, what i would do is

      1. Drop down to 2NL
      2. Put volume
      3. Watch some psychology videos or read some articles
      4. Take out of your mind the idea that something is wrong in the site cause it will hurt u
      5. Improve your game
      6. Profit :)
    • metza
      Joined: 28.01.2012 Posts: 2,220
      Hi, I think you misunderstood me, I'm not questioning the integrity of the game, but my own play. Just to be super clear. I am in no way shouting RIGGED or anything.

      The reason for doubting my play is that I started playing a little bit looser but always with position+initiative and it increased my winrate, but the thing is, its getting me into some marginal situations, where a lot of the time - not to toot my own horn or anything, but - I am actually making the right calls. eg things like raising 99 utg, getting 1 caller from bb, flop QT2 he shoves as a shortstack, I call and he rivers a 3 with 33. Whereas if I just played like the PokerStrategy BSS said, I wouldn't be getting into these situations, and would have a lower EV line, but a higher green line probably.

      The thing is, this tight play is to avoid making marginal decisions, but I actually like to do this because I feel like a lot of the increased winrate when I started playing loose was from winning money in marginal spots by making the right decisions, and also this style I feel leads to a lot more progress in my ability than playing formulaic BSS, and progress in ability is my ultimate goal anyway.

      I'm just wondering if I should trust the style that I've recently developed and seems to be +EV and I feel comfortable playing, or just go back to being a BSS bot, cos it sure as hell gives less variance.

      Also, definitely gonna drop to NL2 I've decided, just to rebuild roll as you said, even though it is tilting knowing that I should instead be halfway to NL10...
    • Tomaloc
      Joined: 17.01.2011 Posts: 7,240
      marginal decisions are, well, marginal, and as such usually variance heavy

      in your case it seems like you are running tons below EV so i'd take solace in the EV line.
      worse is when you just run into toppest of everyone's range "all the time" so you don't even feel like you are making the right plays.
      i feel that we secretly wish that we could win every session

      hope Jared can help :f_p:
    • metza
      Joined: 28.01.2012 Posts: 2,220
      Yeah, I don't even think secretly, I fully feel like every session should be a winning one, it's bad, I know. :f_biggrin: And a lot of the time I do seem to be very lucky in dodging consecutive bad beats for long stretches of time, then they all seem to hit all at once, which reinforces this belief, and ridiculous sense of entitlement to always win, alongside a heightened contrast between these periods and what's happening now. :f_o:

      I am quite a strong believer in the idea that thoughts and beliefs change the world so much more than most people credit them, and in a way, I feel like I am doing this to myself. A couple bad beats happen, and my negative vibe just puts me in a reality where this negativity reins.

      Like the Schrodinger's cat analogy, I see it as the possibilities existing simultaneously to play poker and not get ridiculous beats, or to play and just get obscene suckout after suckout, depending on which possibility of reality actualizes. And I feel like my thoughts can affect this actualization.

      I dunno, perhaps that seems crazy, but it almost feels like my negative thoughts are affecting the outcome of the cards. Certainly when I get like this, eg. today I had KK vs QQ and my negative thought patterns spew out "of course the queen will come", I see the Q coming in my mind and of course it does, and it feels like my fault, and it starts happening with alarming regularity once I fall into this negativity. Kind of hard to explain but hopefully it makes sense even if you don't agree with it. :f_biggrin:
    • zobupasts
      Joined: 10.04.2009 Posts: 310
      Looks pretty sick. Especially if this is the first time you are going through this kind of bad luck and you don't have much experience with how brutal variance can be.

      I am a bankroll nit and as such I definitely suggest you to drop down a limit. Reread strategy articles, regain confidence at NL2, rebuild your bankroll and than take shots at NL5 again.
    • ShaQQ
      Joined: 07.10.2008 Posts: 162
      You just have to focus on what you can control, include screenshots of your stats ITT, the example hands seem totally standard from your side so don't be disheartened about your own play, just scrutinise every aspect of your game, whether it's:

      -- Playing draws too aggressively
      -- Over valuing TPMK
      -- Calling too many rivers but also not extracting max value
      -- Not exploiting opponents c-bet tendencies
      -- Not c-betting enough yourself.

      Also don't just analyse the largest pots, at 2nl you can get away with c-betting like 90+% of flops, but there might be times where it's a leak, whether it's board texture, or c-betting vs wrong opponents etc, or maybe you're flatting too many rivers with marginal hands.

      I've just reeled off potential leaks many players have, we all develop at different rates, so just ignore results and focus on one aspect each session until you're comfortable with most spots, whether it's c-betting more often as PFR, or exploiting "regs" c-bet tendencies, I dunno, find things that you aren't familiar with as opposed to just value spots.

      Sorry for generalising, hope it helps anyway :)


    • ArtCascade
      Joined: 18.06.2012 Posts: 17
      The cards are not affected by what you think. What is affected by what you think though, is what you remember. ;)

      It is called "confirmation bias" and has good scientific backing. Read for example this part of the wiki article:
      People remember very different things from the same events depending on what they expect to find.

      So apart from your bad luck, it will feel worse than it actually is, due to the fact that you are now convinced that you have bad luck.

      So try to use the confirmation bias for good instead of letting it consume you. Try to convince yourself that today is the day that your luck will turn, and it is likely that it will actually happen. Or at least it is likely that you will THINK that you luck turned, which can be good enough. ;) It is a bit like trying to trick yourself into a placebo effect (this pill WILL make my cold go away!!), but sometimes it works.

      Good luck.
    • metza
      Joined: 28.01.2012 Posts: 2,220
      Ok, well we'll agree to disagree then :f_p:

      I believe that thoughts and ideas can affect matter, and there have been findings in quantum physics that support this.

      But who knows for sure...

    • ArtCascade
      Joined: 18.06.2012 Posts: 17
      Well, confirmation bias or not, I think we both agree that it would be useful to try to think a bit more positive. :) Not easy though. Hopefully going down a limit to regain some confidence will help.

      Regarding the quantum mechanics. You happened to run into a PhD in particle physics, and I have never heard of any findings in quantum mechanics supporting thoughts affecting a (probably psudo-)random number generator. :P Not saying that it is ruled out by QM either though, so plenty of space to believe what you want. ;) Anyway, I'd be happy to discuss it further if you want, but not sure if this is the thread to do so.

      Good luck at the tables!
    • Schnitzelfisch
      Joined: 08.11.2008 Posts: 4,952
      Hey there,

      I'm not going to write a very long reply, simply because the solution to your problems is very, very simple.

      I agree that you should focus on the things that you can control and not on the ones you don't.

      After each session, you should ask yourself how good you've played, not how much money you've made.

      If you constantly improve your game, the results will come as well.

      It really is that simple. There's no magical solution. Just focus on the right things and work hard to improve them :) .