Poker is one of the most difficult games to master. Even with significant effort and attention, mastering the game and all of its complexities will take a lifetime.
However, you’ll never become a poker expert if your negative habits are sabotaging your efforts. The top nine bad behaviours that could cost you a lot of money when playing poker games are listed below.
“Poker takes a day to learn and a lifetime to perfect,” said Robert Williamson III. Mastering a wide range of talents and disciplines via experience and study of the game is required to become a great poker ace. However, even after mastering the principles, math, and turning your first profitable month, most poker players continue to engage in a number of negative habits that cost them hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars each month. We’ve put together a list of the 25 most prevalent poor habits that affect most poker players in the hopes of helping you win more money at the tables. “A penny saved is a penny earned,” as the saying goes.
- Prematurely getting ready to fold
Many players develop the practice of elevating their cards before their turn to act in the hopes of folding in a poker tournament. While you don’t want to postpone action excessively, there’s no need to prepare because folding takes only a fraction of a second. To players who haven’t yet acted, indicating that you’re ready to fold early indicates that you’re weak.
While this may not matter to you in that specific hand — after all, you’re folding – it could come back to get you in the future when your refusal to act in this manner prevents players with marginal hands from entering the pot. They may assume you are powerful because you are not folding, robbing you of your money.
- Looking to the right when you know you’re going to fold
You don’t want to reveal what you’re going to do by displaying any physical reaction to your cards until everyone who hasn’t acted yet does.
When you neglect to look to the right to see when it is your turn to fold, you are handing your opponents free information – not just about your poor hand, but also about future strong hands.
- Counting chips in anticipation of betting
Preparing to place a wager when you have a solid hand by getting the chips ready early is a classic “newbie” blunder. It’s not necessary to do so. You can and should postpone the fast-paced action of the game by counting out any chips you’ll use to call or raise a bet until it’s your turn to act.
- Slow playing strong flops
This is something that many beginners and intermediate players do naturally. They try to appear “smart” by playing their really powerful hands slowly on a regular basis. They instantly refuse to reveal the strength of their hand when they hit a set on the flop, instead of checking or calling a bet.
This is a horrible habit to acquire because, in many cases, if not most of the time, being assertive is the best option. The situation, not your playing habits, should determine whether you are aggressive or passive. Turn off the autopilot and consider the most profitable course of action in each situation.
- Talking when you hit your hand
When you hit strong hands, you frequently feel a strong internal release of energy. One of the most common manifestations of that energy release is the beginning of a conversation. Many players, novice, intermediate, and veteran alike, can’t seem to stop themselves from engaging in lighthearted banter when they’re confident in their prospects of winning.
Stop the leak by resisting the temptation to speak while you’re feeling very strong.
- Glancing at chips on a strong flop
When they hit a solid hand on the flop, many players reflexively look down at their chips. It’s a tried-and-true strategy that’s made savvy gamers millions.
Avoid this tell by actively avoiding this eye movement after looking at the flip, regardless of how helpful or harmful it is to your hand.
- Staring at the board on the flop
When the flip misses their cards, many players, like the last tell, can’t resist the urge to keep looking at it. That is not something you should do. Adopt the same habit of glancing at the flop for a few seconds before moving on – regardless of whether it helps or hinders your hand.
- Resting on elbows and slouching
At the poker table, patterns of movement and posture can be exhausting and even harmful over time. At the very least, slumping down on your elbows and compressing your head and neck into your shoulders drains energy and brings an otherwise long and profitable session to a premature end.
Allowing your head and chest to be more erect and your shoulders to be more relaxed will help you break this unhealthy habit.
- Drinking alcohol
Alcohol impairs your ability to think clearly. Drinking on a regular basis will have a negative impact on your game. Sure, a beer or glass of wine now and then is OK, but realise that drinking too much will inevitably hurt your chances of winning.
- Playing interactive games at the table
Poker online players were more interested in interactive games on their tablets than in the activity at the table (or phone). They do it all the time. While poker can seem tedious at times, especially when terrible or inexperienced players take an eternity to act, having a fun distraction that keeps your mind off the game can only be beneficial.
Looking for something else to do? Have a static activity, such as a crossword puzzle or a book (on your tablet or phone if you like), that you can do while you’re at the poker game. Any other continuing activity that constantly draws you away from the poker game — because you can’t resist the impulse to keep up with the action of the other game — is anathema to competent play.
Although smoking is more of an addiction than a habit, players who are focused on the game are regularly distracted by their desire to smoke at the tables and are frequently compelled to leave the poker game, poker room, and building in order to satisfy that desire.
While taking regular, deliberate pauses from the action makes sense, doing so out of a smoking compulsion or addiction does not.
- Sitting in the first seat you see
When you walk into a poker room, get rid of the habit of instantly and swiftly taking the first seat in the first game you see. You want to be in the greatest seat possible for the best game. If there are no good games available, you may wish to skip a session altogether.
The difference between a good seat in a good game and the first available seat could mean the difference between winning and losing a session. You’re missing out on one of the best possibilities to engage in profitable play if you choose the first seat you see without first scouting out the games.
Gambling, as ironic as it may sound, is a nasty habit for many poker players, sucking money out of their pockets that could otherwise be profited from smart poker play. For most people, gambling means playing casino games with a negative expected value (EV), such as dice, roulette, keno, blackjack, sports betting, and horse racing. (Perhaps an exception exists if you’re a strong blackjack player or a successful sports or horse handicapper.)
- Playing in over your head
This terrible habit could indicate one of two problems. You’re in over your head because you’re either betting more money than you can afford or playing against poker players with far more expertise than you.
Both of these unhealthy habits have the potential to cost you a lot of money.
If you want to be a successful player in a poker app, stick to the ranges that you’re familiar with. Start at tables that are below your bankroll and skill level and work your way up as your skills and confidence improve.
- Playing in a bad mood
Poker is an enjoyable game to play, and you should always keep that in mind. One of the biggest reasons you can be losing money is because you’re in a poor attitude while you play. Fortunately, breaking this terrible behaviour is rather simple.
Simply put, if you’re exhausted, in a foul mood, hungry, furious, or concerned by any factors that will influence your decision-making, you should quit playing.
It’s always advisable to walk away from a game if you feel like you’re pushing yourself to keep playing. Save the money for when you’re in the correct frame of mind.
- Playing without taking breaks
Poker is a highly addicting and absorbing game. It’s easy to become engrossed in the game and lose sight of everything else going on around you. If you have such a tendency, attempt to break it as soon as possible.
Unlike some of the other terrible habits on our list, this one is rather easy to break.
All you have to do is establish a schedule in which you take a break and drink or eat something every hour or two. Take a five- to ten-minute break. Simply go for a stroll and attempt to clear your head so you can return to the table with complete concentration.
- Quitting when you shouldn’t
In contrast to the preceding procedure, a lower percentage of poker players make the mistake of quitting when they shouldn’t.
Although knowing when to stop is always beneficial, you should occasionally pay attention to your form, emotions, and general circumstance and try to capitalise on it if you feel you’re gaining momentum as the practice develops.
There’s no need to stop playing if you’re having fun playing real money games India. Furthermore, if there are any fish in the game, you should stay and try to maximise your profit.