Motivation and poker

    • Schnitzelfisch
      Schnitzelfisch
      Bronze
      Joined: 08.11.2008 Posts: 4,952
      Hey guys,

      I know that a lot of poker players struggle with motivation. I'm curious how you deal with it.

      1) What do you do to motivate yourself?
      2) What do you do when you get stuck? How do you get unstuck and back on track?

      -Primoz
  • 6 replies
    • Rihard4a
      Rihard4a
      Gold
      Joined: 08.09.2010 Posts: 2,038
      I just force myself to do stuff because I know that I want to succeed at whatever I want to succeed. If I don't have motivation and struggle to recover it, I usually talk to someone who has the motivation, and who is good at what he does in order to motivate myself. Sometimes I watch some Rocky clips as well. (Fish, I know. :f_biggrin: )

      My wife helps along the way as well. She keeps saying that I have to continue what I am doing because at the of the day I will succeed.

      I guess my dedication helps. Otherwise I would've been already given up at some point. :)

      Regards,

      Rihard
    • makskoritnik
      makskoritnik
      Bronze
      Joined: 29.09.2013 Posts: 11
      watching motivational videos on youtube... trying to stop over thinking and just do the thing, having the mentality like if you don't do this you will never be successful, champions are defined when hard times come and all that motivational stuff...that's how i do it:) About getting back on track I just rest for a few days, forget about poker than work on my strategy to gain confidence back..:) I'm new in poker so i would really like to hear what true grinders have to say..

      gl,
      Maks
    • gadget51
      gadget51
      Bronze
      Joined: 23.06.2008 Posts: 5,622
      I certainly can't force myself to study/review or play, I have to want to do it. Feeling like I have to do it is a real turn off for me. If I want to do something enough, I can (within reason) do anything I want to; unfortunately, getting to the stage of really, really wanting to is a rare state of mind for me.

      Getting stuck, or getting myself into a 'rut' as it were, used to be a commonplace nightmare position for me. To get out of it I often had to reach the very bottom - or very close to it - then something would snap and I'd pick myself up and get on with getting out of it.

      What or more accurately, who, keeps me motivated, is mrsgadget, most things follow after that. Having a mrsgadget changed everything.

      Hope it makes vague sense, it's a bit rushed.

      Mal.
    • MasochisticDesire
      MasochisticDesire
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.10.2010 Posts: 486
      Originally posted by gadget51
      Getting stuck, or getting myself into a 'rut' as it were, used to be a commonplace nightmare position for me. To get out of it I often had to reach the very bottom - or very close to it - then something would snap and I'd pick myself up and get on with getting out of it.
      Mal.
      I can definitely relate to this. This year especially I have had to see rock bottom rushing up at me before I finally pulled my finger out and got my sh*t together.

      To address the thread questions.
      I have always found the concepts and sustainment of motivation and productivity and the measurement of success and failure utterly fascinating, and, from my experience, our primary occupation as it is so intrinsically linked to the ideas of self-worth and indentity that often seem so illusive in modern western society.
      I would like to write about my attitudes to the problems surrounding motivation though this will be in a broader 'life' context and not specific habbits regarding poker, though I believe it is still relevant.

      [The following is merely my opinion - probably flawed in every way but regardless it is what I choose to believe. It is not aimed at or intended to insult or upset anyone.]

      I think the turning point for me was the realisation of the consequences of not dedicating oneself to something.
      The dawning comprehension that if you dont test your limits and dedicate yourself to something (by no means has to be poker) then you will inevitably wind up working a job you resent and become one of those people who are dissatisfied with their lot and are forever saying 'I could have done/been/achieved.' NO YOU COULDNT. If you had the capability but not the discipline then it is your strength of character that has failed you and thus you failed yourself and having cultivated such a character this was the only place you were going to end up.

      I have found that the fear of 'failure' is a strong short-term motivator. However, it is a nervous energy that is hard and often unpleasant to maintain. If I were to visualise it I would describe a man trying to walk to a destination along a very narrow cliff in the mist with a chasm of self-loathing one careless step to the left and a black hole of excuses and self-pity to the right.

      I believe it preferable to never lose sight of what is at stake but try to develop a more positive and empowering motivational outlook. Some of which I think are subtle but impactful adjustments in how we view our lives:

      1) you are not the sum of a long string of events and things that happen to you; you are the sum of your reaction to these events.
      With this attitude you are no longer a helpless subject but the one with the power to choose how external influences impact your life.
      Another habit I think it worth cultivating is to not make excuses. Stop giving others your bullshit excuses and you will soon stop believing them yourself and it then becomes hard to hide from yourself that you have been doing so out of fear of failure (or being seen as one by yourself or others.)

      2) [this is adapted from a philosophy of Alan Watts who in turn adapted it for a Western audience from far older Eastern philosophy.] The view that our lives are constructed of high and low points is only due to our level of magnification to the thing in question; in this example, our lives. If we viewed the passage of time much faster and were to view our lives from such a point of view - we would not see the highs and lows but the collective direction our lives take. It is my belief that this direction (in my mind a curve) is forged by our choices and the attitude we adopt in response to what we perceive as high and low points through our day to day lives.
      We should all be familiar with such a concept as it is remarkably similar to the progress graphs we see every day playing poker, that, viewed after significant volume, do not so much display the 'swings' of poker but understanding and (hopefully) improvement at the game.

      3) of equal importance and yes, written with a sense of irony :f_biggrin:
      Allow yourself time to not always take life and yourself so bloody seriously :D
      Laugh, love, relish genuine interaction and in short - live. Remember we are all lost and that any constructs we build to make sense of it are probably wrong though we will probably never know and if it works for you and helps you attain whatever the hell it is you hope to attain from life and have decided this madness is all about - then it is right for you and f*ck anyone that tells you otherwise.

      Thanks for reading my madness,
      MD
    • maythany
      maythany
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.10.2011 Posts: 1,189
      Hey guys,

      I know that a lot of poker players struggle with motivation. I'm curious how you deal with it.

      1) What do you do to motivate yourself?
      2) What do you do when you get stuck? How do you get unstuck and back on track?

      -Primoz


      I don't know if this will answer your question, but I came upon this realization awhile ago.

      I wouldn't play poker and at first I thought it was because I lost interest in the game and as a result I became less motivated to put in the hours that was needed of every poker player.

      Even when I wasn't playing I would check this site and watch poker videos on youtube so I knew I had a genuine interest in the game. So what was it? What was the root of the cause that wasn't allowing me to play?

      I only found out the answer to this only just a few days ago and it was because I was scared. I was scared of failing, scared that I won't succeed in achieving my dreams.

      I guess I envisioned this dream poker life in my head and I refrained myself from playing because if I did and I failed then my dream would come crashing down spiraling out of control into the darkness of the abyss.

      Now I'm just as motivated as I was when I started playing $1.50 6 max sngs. That was the peak of my motivation and I feel great!


      Furthermore, When I'm stuck I just take a small break and continue my daily volume grind after I get some air and "let go". I continue playing my very best and always tell myself when I make mistakes (bad read, bad play) that everyone makes errors and no one is perfect.
    • patszerdonk
      patszerdonk
      Bronze
      Joined: 19.05.2011 Posts: 834
      Originally posted by Schnitzelfisch
      Hey guys,

      I know that a lot of poker players struggle with motivation. I'm curious how you deal with it.

      1) What do you do to motivate yourself?
      2) What do you do when you get stuck? How do you get unstuck and back on track?

      -Primoz
      1. Just thinking "I must be able to beat this limit and move up. I definitely better than these guys!!"
      2. To be honest, I don't know. I just stop playing for a couple of days. Would like to know how others do.