The SpinLegends Mindset - If you hate mistakes, you hate learning

We have more mindset gold from the vaults of the private SpinLegends Discord channel from our very own KTU.


Every moment you do something, you are working on your mindset. In this moment you are using your reading skills to absorb content in order to work on your mindset, for example. All of your activities have goals, but you are not always aware of them.

Most of us don't eat chocolate with the clear mission of "I'm going to eat a chocolate to please the reward center in my brain, increase my blood sugar level and disconnect from my problems a bit".

However, sometimes we know why we are doing something. You study poker with the clear intention of improving your poker skills. In the moment you are aware of your goals so you can start evaluating your performance.

If you can't measure it, you can't improve it!' - Peter Drucker

A common approach is to start with your understanding of an ideal performance and compare this to your actual performance. Your idea of an ideal performance will develop over time. Therefore 'your best' is a moving target. When analysing your performance day after day, you will realise that 80% of your days are average days. This is true for everyone. Don't try to convince other people or yourself that you can always perform at the very top of your abilities and rather accept that true personal growth is to raise the bar over time.

Your average day over three months should be higher than your average performance today. Your worst days will be less horrible and your best days are new all time highs. Everyone makes mistakes, high performers make fewer mistakes and have a better understanding of mistakes. So, be prepared to make mistakes and to understand that this is part of every human performance.

The importance of feedback

KTU poker article
Optimal performace is a moving target

The mistakes, we have covered so far are mistakes you are aware of. Things, you can already do better in theory, but there are also mistakes that are linked to your understanding of 'your best performance'. In case you don't know that a pot size bet is much better than a half pot bet in certain spots, you are not even aware of your mistake. Hence, you rate your performance as good while it was probably poor.

Therefore, it is very important to write down your poker thoughts and get feedback on them. This can lead to huge leaps in your understanding of poker, when other players and coaches spot mistakes in your logic. The biggest mistake you can do is to be shy and trying to figure out everything on your own. You will not be aware of your flaws and often you might not even have a clear logic. In the moment, you write down your thoughts and start discussing them, you will always learn. Make sure, that you don't get too attached to your thoughts and rather try to improve your thinking. So, use our community and write a lot about poker and appreciate especially critical responses.

To help you deal emotionally with mistakes, we recommend using a meditation app like HeadSpace and reading Jared Tendler's book The Mental Game of Poker. He has a whole chapter on 'Mistake Tilt' and summarises the solution to it as follows:

The solution is to build a strong knowledge base for the learning process. Working through poker's equivalent of the karate belts gives you the best chance not only to avoid tilt, but to sustain a high learning curve.

Finally I would say be kind to yourself. Learning from mistakes does not have to mean beating yourself up. Just aim to work on your goals every day with a curious mindset and ask yourself questions. This is how to learn from experience and put the theory into practice at the tables.


  • Everything you do is a skill
  • Skills can be measured and improved
  • Understanding mistakes is fundamental for improvement
  • You need to improve your understanding of 'your best'
  • Feedback is the best way to get aware of your black spots
  • Write a lot about poker and appreciate negative feedback

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As soon as you show promise we move you up in stakes, one stake at a time, all the way to the top.

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Comments (2)

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  • AlexKockar


    im succesefull in Spin&go but im mtt player ;)
  • NatRPheM


    I mean this is the essence of life, if you can't handle mistakes and failure, you can't handle life, which is why majority don't. There is a fundamental flaw being taught from early stages in life that it's bad to fail, it's not, it's crucial to fail. It's how we learn or rather that's how it's suppose to be