On Thursday, as I was loading purchases into the car at the end of the trip to the drugstore, I set my mind to understanding why I was so eager to play poker and be involved in things related to poker, but could not bring myself to sit down and review my hand history in order to improve my game.

As I transferred items from the shopping cart to the trunk in the dark parking lot, it occurred to me that I should try applying Paired Decision Making, a technique I was introduced to in a counselling session about a month ago. I started by defining the relevant issues for myself, and came up with the following: do I want to (1) spend time improving my poker game so as to improve my ROI, or (2) spend time playing poker to achieve returns at my current ROI?  At this point, I realized that I could throw Paired Decision Making out the window, because I had only two items to compare, and I could work with them easily enough without breaking them down into smaller parts.  (But Paired Decision Making could be very useful in other situations, dear reader, so keep it in mind!)

It is obvious that my two options here are not mutually exclusive; rather, the decision I am making is about how much of my time I should spend on each. As I pondered, the answer presented itself to me: right now, I am satisfied with my ROI, but not satisfied with the size of my bankroll and the games I can justify playing within it.  Furthermore, I am doing more study and review than I give myself credit for; I describe hands I have played to my wife, I attend PSO Live Training sessions, I watch PSO Training videos while exercising, I read all sorts of stuff on various plays and styles on PokerNews and other sources found through my Twitter feed, and I read Harrington on Hold'Em Vol 1 every night before bed, in little bits so I don't try to absorb too much at once, and I find ideas from that most excellent book come to me throughout the day.

So after thinking through all of this, I concluded that (1) I may be spending sufficient time on study already, and (2) even if I'm not, my current ROI and my goal of increasing my bankroll to play at higher stakes make it acceptable for me to study less at the moment, as long as I am prepared to study harder as I play in bigger games and face tougher competition.

What do you think about this  logic? Am I underestimating the value of hand history reviews even at very low stakes?

Until next time, good luck at the tables!

-- CanuckMonkey