Lets Develop a Proper Work Ethic

    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      I’ve been playing poker seriously (atleast I thought so) for about 2 years now although all I’ve played so far has been restricted to micros.

      Lately I’ve been thinking about my career so far and what has been keeping me from reaching higher stakes already. I have over a million hands at micros under my belt so far and only a mediocre win rate to boast of.



      YEAR 1

      The first year was about 700k hands, starting of my career, full of tilt, I recall losing on regular tables not willing to call it a day going to Zoom to put in huge volume in short period of time to win back, would lose more, that’s right DESPERATION tilt. There was a long period of breakeven just because of this, me going to Zoom for all the wrong reasons. Volume was high but results not consistent and lots of tilting which even affected my ‘away from the tables’ life.

      YEAR 2

      This time I took a different approach. Year one was most 4-6 tabling regular tables and desperate zoom sessions, I decided to get rid of the desperate zoom session and go for more consistency with mostly 6 tabling regular tables. The result was a very nice steady increase save for a drop in the last part which was last 2 months of very poor play and even poorer volume.

      I had fixed some tilt issues and desperate tilt was nowhere to be seen however some new problems had come up like HATE LOSING tilt.
      This year was all about playing when I’m up for it, avoiding playing when there’s something wrong in life like fights with girlfriend etc.
      Result was a better year, I could withdraw a lot and comfortably sustain myself, however other problems had crept in like complacency, too much moodiness and as a result very low yearly volume, slightly over 300k hands, nowhere near my potential given the time I have on my hands.

      THIS YEAR

      I think its time to start acting professional. I’m done crying, I’m done making excuses, I’m done playing it safe.

      I wanna develop a proper work ethic. A proper way of working which means good volume and good quality work away from the tables.

      I have some ideas but this post has already become a bit long so will talk about that in a new post.
  • 11 replies
    • Lazza61
      Lazza61
      Headadmin
      Headadmin
      Joined: 23.03.2011 Posts: 9,217
      Hey maheepsangari,

      Nice first post. :)

      It's cool that you've said enough is enough. I have to give this a decent go. I need to make a plan and stick to it.

      Looking forward to your next post.

      Cheers

      Laz
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Thanks for the warm welcome Laz.

      I’ve always had a problem with assessing my performance and analysing my game. Everyone needs some sort of metric to measure their performance and they work around that metric or sets of metric.

      When starting poker I think everyone rushes to profit/loss as that metric and so did I. Then there are others like EV, hands played, time played etc. None of these really worked for me.

      Profit/Loss for obvious reasons and that brought about a big hate losing tilt problem. I’d book my wins sooner, I’m talking play 10 mins, up 3 BIs I’d call it a day cause it would suck to end the day at less than 3 BIs profit then.

      Hands/Time Played was slightly better but I’d increase my volume and no. of tables and the quality of my decisions would fall drastically. I would just bloody overdo it thinking I need to grind it out, especially if I’m down or running breakeven, gotta grind out the period to sweet profit land.
      Here are some of the highest volume days I’ve put in.



      Overall in these high volume days shown, I was down almost 7 BIs in over 100k hands, pure bad mindless play only focussing on volume.

      So I’ve decided a new metric for myself to measure the quality of my play and measure my performance, I call it error rate. I don’t like too long posts so I’ll explain the metric in this spoiler.


      I play the day and avoid checking results, the next day before starting my playing day i open a filter i created that filters hands where i won or lost > 8.5bb.

      I have created new tags in HM2 to mark hands namely, played correctly, played incorrectly and optimal play unknown.

      I review all these hands and mark them based on how I think they were played, correct, incorrect or I don’t know.

      Then I calculate the % of incorrectly played hands to the total reviewed ( which is like ~50 per 1500 hands played). I call this figure my error rate.
      Whenever this figure goes up i'll know i'm playing bad regardless of my results or the variance involved.

      So the implications are:-
      1. I am still result oriented my result now is not variance dependent it is the quality of my play dependent, however there is variance in my quality of play too and a proper work ethic can reduce that variance.

      2. I am analysing hands a lot more now than I used to cause I need to know my performance and this measure is the closest I have been able to come to measuring quality of my play rather than just won/lost results. Also this helps me find spots where I don’t know what to do when I’m playing in auto pilot mode also the mistakes I commonly make, the leaks I have and can fix them more effectively.

      3. In due process I hope to become less money result oriented and more quality of play result oriented. This should fix my hate losing tilt and other money related tilt which are rooted cause of the problem that we measure performance on money and not play.

      4. I make better quality decisions on the table, 1 hand incorrectly played from 30 hands is 3.33% which means 2-3 such hands can make my desired 10% acceptable error rate to 20%. so now all of a sudden I'm not worried about how much I might lose if I'm wrong, it’s about the quality of decision only regardless of the outcome.

      There is enough room for improvement in this type of metric too which think I’ll improve on as time goes by, maybe stuff like have ratings for various kinds of incorrectly played hands so that I know which are the bigger problems I need to work on more seriously.


      The aim is to keep this error rate as low as possible, lower than 10% for now and then go lower, and at the same time increase my volume but slowly and gradually so that the error rate doesn’t suffer cause that’s the most important metric and volume of hands follows.

      I also plan on increasing the number of tables right away which I already have, moved from 6 to 9. Did so cause 6 tabling makes me get bored sooner, I need music to keep me grinding and I try funky stuff in between plays that leaks money from my win rate. 9 tabling keeps me going properly, I play my standard game which is auto pilot mode most of the time. From here I'll slowly increase my session lengths and eventually add more tables and go up to 12 tables or even more if I can handle it.

      I am convinced that its way better to play more tables and hands in auto pilot mode than play 6 tables and think about your game while playing. The thinking about your game should be done away from the table when you’re analysing your play and fixing leaks in your auto pilot mode.

      Auto pilot mode after all is the unconscious competence where we need to train skills and fix leaks so that we can achieve high levels of performance.
      Also interestingly, I noticed that my error rate in sessions where I 6 table is usually higher than when I 9 table cause 9 tabling doesn’t give me room to do any tomfoolery.

      So this blog is about helping me fix leaks in my auto pilot mode and where I do my away from the table work that should help me higher levels of prolonged performance at high efficiency. I plan to be able to be playing 150k hands a month soon but not too soon that I compromise on error rate.

      I hope I can get some good advice here along the way to help me fix my leaks :) .
    • legand73
      legand73
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.06.2010 Posts: 4,135
      Hey MS

      Hows it going? that incorrect/correct marking thing looks awesome. Do you find that it's working? I'm really interested and i'm thinking of implementing something similar but it also seems a bit tedious and I can't see myself marking anywhere near close to all my hands over 8.5bb
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Originally posted by legand73
      Hey MS

      Hows it going? that incorrect/correct marking thing looks awesome. Do you find that it's working? I'm really interested and i'm thinking of implementing something similar but it also seems a bit tedious and I can't see myself marking anywhere near close to all my hands over 8.5bb
      Well then start from 20 bb hands, as you get time keep taking more hands in your sample.

      Not as tedious as it sounds cause most hands only take a few seconds to analyze and mark. The key is to find those hidden leaks or spots that you aren't too comfortable with.

      PS: Its definitely working and as the blog takes its course I hope to see better results with this method to really work on my game actively.

      PPS: The size of won/lost int he filter really depends on the kind of pots you want to analyze.

      If you want to get atleast all the double barrelled spots then you're looking at a (3+4+9) 16bb. If you want all your 3bet pots to come in atleast then its 8.5 or 9bb, if you want all flop cbet spots then its even lower (3+4) 7bb. So depending on how much time you can spare and what spots you absolutely want to analyze every session, you can pick a size.
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Ok here's a spot I've seen a few times and not sure what to do.

      You open preflop with a good ace broadway, flop top pair on a flush draw board, bet flop, barrel turn and the river completes a flush. How do you approach these spots?

      Poker Stars, $0.05/$0.10 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 6 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      BTN: $15.85 (158.5 bb)
      SB: $13.81 (138.1 bb)
      BB: $25.38 (253.8 bb)
      UTG: $10 (100 bb)
      Hero (MP): $17.53 (175.3 bb)
      CO: $10.10 (101 bb)

      Preflop: Hero is MP with J A
      UTG folds, Hero raises to $0.30, CO calls $0.30, 3 folds

      Flop: ($0.75) K 5 A (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.50, CO calls $0.50

      Turn: ($1.75) 9 (2 players)
      Hero bets $1.25, CO calls $1.25

      River: ($3.91) 6 (2 players)
      Hero ???

      Questions:
      1. When IP and are checked to, do you always check behind?
      2. When OOP what line do you most commonly take? b/f, x/c or even x/f and why?
      3. What stats or factors do you look into if your answer to above questions is 'It Depends'. I'd love to know how you guys think its best to approach this spot. Also if you play this spot very differently against a TAG compared to maybe a fish then how so?
    • seranpoker
      seranpoker
      Bronze
      Joined: 08.07.2010 Posts: 276
      1. I'm always checking behind.
      2. Oop in this particular spot looks like a xf to me as villain does not have too many bluff combos in his range IMO. Since you have the A :club: lesser club combos that he can bluff with otr. Versus fishes I am bet folding river (idk about 1/3rd?). Thin value against weaker Aces. Vs regs without reads I'm X folding.
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Originally posted by seranpoker
      1. I'm always checking behind.
      2. Oop in this particular spot looks like a xf to me as villain does not have too many bluff combos in his range IMO. Since you have the A :club: lesser club combos that he can bluff with otr. Versus fishes I am bet folding river (idk about 1/3rd?). Thin value against weaker Aces. Vs regs without reads I'm X folding.
      So can you think of a situation where you are b/f against a reg? Maybe a slightly different board or maybe if you had A :spade: instead of A :club: .

      I myself go for a x/f almost always even against fish. I feel that even a fish can fold a weaker hand here. I just feel like when he calls down till river, no matter what kind of player, the range will be similar. As in flush draws, Ax combos and a few Kx combos. How heavy the range is on what part may vary, for example a fish might have weaker Ax more than a reg since his calling range is wider preflop, however do you still think a fish calls a weak Ax or Kx here when you bet the river?

      On another note,

      Poker Stars, $0.02/$0.05 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 5 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      CO: $3.58 (71.6 bb)
      BTN: $7.43 (148.6 bb)
      SB: $3.36 (67.2 bb)
      Hero (BB): $5 (100 bb)
      MP: $6.50 (130 bb)

      Preflop: Hero is BB with 6 6
      MP folds, CO raises to $0.15, 2 folds, Hero calls $0.10

      Flop: ($0.32) 8 6 7 (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.30, CO calls $0.30

      Turn: ($0.92) 3 (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.90, CO calls $0.90

      River: ($2.72) K (2 players)
      Hero bets ???

      Now we flopped a set, if he had a straight he might have raised earlier so what about this river, whats your standard play?

      Also when IP and checked to what will you do on this river?
      I think I check behind on this river cause again I feel his range is really condensed here with most of his floats having flush draws and other random hands might not even pay me off but being OOP here sucks!
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Cake Poker, $0.05/$0.10 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 5 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      BTN: $9.68 (96.8 bb)
      SB: $8.66 (86.6 bb)
      BB: $9.60 (96 bb)
      Hero (MP): $10.25 (102.5 bb)
      CO: $16 (160 bb) 15/10 292 hands, Preflop 3-bet 2.1%, vs steal (f-80%, c-20%) AF 1.8 Flop vs C-Bet(7) (f-14%, c-71%, r-14%) Agg % (F/T/R 34/32/23)

      Preflop: Hero is MP with K A
      Hero raises to $0.40, CO calls $0.40, 3 folds

      Flop: ($0.95) A Q T (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.80, CO raises to $2.30, Hero folds

      Results:
      $2.55 pot ($0.17 rake)
      Final Board: A Q T
      Hero mucked K A and lost (-$1.20 net)
      CO mucked and won $2.38 ($1.18 net)


      1. Is the fold correct?
      I folded cause there isn't much I think he can have that I beat. His low 3-bet% suggests he can have TT,AQ,KJ,AT,QT at the very least. I just don't see many bluffs or draws and he didn't seen aggro enough to raise gutshots there.

      2. If you are in the villians place, what do you raise here and does your raising range have any bluffs? If there are no bluffs in your range, should you even raise to begin with?
    • seranpoker
      seranpoker
      Bronze
      Joined: 08.07.2010 Posts: 276


      On another note,

      Poker Stars, $0.02/$0.05 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 5 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      CO: $3.58 (71.6 bb)
      BTN: $7.43 (148.6 bb)
      SB: $3.36 (67.2 bb)
      Hero (BB): $5 (100 bb)
      MP: $6.50 (130 bb)

      Preflop: Hero is BB with 6 6
      MP folds, CO raises to $0.15, 2 folds, Hero calls $0.10

      Flop: ($0.32) 8 6 7 (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.30, CO calls $0.30

      Turn: ($0.92) 3 (2 players)
      Hero bets $0.90, CO calls $0.90

      River: ($2.72) K (2 players)
      Hero bets ???

      Now we flopped a set, if he had a straight he might have raised earlier so what about this river, whats your standard play?

      Also when IP and checked to what will you do on this river?
      I think I check behind on this river cause again I feel his range is really condensed here with most of his floats having flush draws and other random hands might not even pay me off but being OOP here sucks!
      I feel it's a check call here. He could turn his 9x 5x into bluffs. Chk folding is weak imo. Bet folding is still okay. Verusus a very agro fish I'd chk call.
    • maheepsangari
      maheepsangari
      Gold
      Joined: 08.06.2010 Posts: 2,163
      Sounds good. x/c vs aggro fish and b/f against passive players. b/f can be a small block bet type of thing.

      I did go for a b/f in the hand. he just folded to my river bet :) .

      Analyzing hands the way I am doing is going good. Have been analyzing a lot of hands now so I thought it would be better to get some more inputs and do a more efficient analysis with someone. Made a thread asking for someone willing to analyze with me everyday and hence met Crokid. Did an analysis today was interesting and we plan on doing one everyday now, hoping to learn a lot.

      i made a new tag along with my original (played correct/played incorrect and optimal play unknown tags) called leaks. whatever we both figure is wrong somewhere I mark that and make a note. Will have better control on identified leaks hopefully.

      First leak spotted was bet sizing, bet sizing is too standardized in some spots (9 tabling can't be used as an excuse here). Will definitely focus on that now and pay special importance but I'll be very naive to think I can fix that leak soon, I might not even be close to scratching the surface yet. 'One of the most complex topics in No Limit Holdem' as stated by many but I'm excited to start working on it actively.

      Time to read some more Janda :f_biggrin: . Will post some interesting hands soon.

      On another note, lets talk leading( i don't like calling it donk betting anymore especially when I don't even know when to do it properly) and check/raising. How do you guys approach it, your thoughts for picking one over the other and when you use these lines etc. Forgive me for asking such a vague question but I gotta start making sense of it from somewhere so might as well be very basic questions.

      Poker Stars, $0.02/$0.05 No Limit Hold'em Cash, 5 Players
      Poker Tools Powered By Holdem Manager - The Ultimate Poker Software Suite.

      CO: $3.58 (71.6 bb) 36/28 36 hands, fold to 3bet 0%(2) flop cbet 100%(4), AF 1.6 Agg% 42% other stats are useless as sample is so low even these are less meaningful
      BTN: $7.43 (148.6 bb)
      SB: $3.36 (67.2 bb)
      Hero (BB): $5 (100 bb)
      MP: $6.50 (130 bb)

      Preflop: Hero is BB with 6 6
      MP folds, CO raises to $0.15, 2 folds, Hero calls $0.10

      Flop: ($0.32) 8 6 7 (2 players)
      Hero lead or x/r?
    • seranpoker
      seranpoker
      Bronze
      Joined: 08.07.2010 Posts: 276
      For someone with a very high flop cbet % I prefer x/r over leading. When you lead you fold all his bluffs.
      X/r Builds up the pot faster.
      Uhmm not too sure though.

      Good luck with your endeavour.