I am desperate so when numerous people spoke highly of Jared Tendler's with Barry Carter's book, 'The Mental Game of Poker', I ordered it immediately. By now it is obvious to me that poker is a complex game where experience at the tables, skill enhanced by hard work, including reviewing course material, watching videos, attending (and enjoying) PSO's live trainings and reaching out for comaraderie amongst PSOers as we discuss hands, strategies , are just some of the  essential tools for improving.

However, I have no doubt that the psychology of the game is critical as our emotions can swing from elation to frustration, from self-loathing to a sense of achievement. At this point I feel a major  psychological block,  which for me comes out in the form of undermining my own game. Have you ever sat at a tournament table with the most chips of 45 players and within the next 5 boards bust out? That's me! Tendler, a registered therapist who has coached more than 170 pros, r talks about conscious and unconscious competence and I fall right into the first category but beyond knowing this, I am stuck. Tendler has worked with over 170 world pros and his approach, thankfully,is not that of  so many  self-help books which would suggest you  visualize yourself winning, meditation, orgo into  years of therapy! Rather, he helps you find your own way. Instead you go on your journey and ultimately find what works for you.

I am  beyond 3 Chapters with a look at what's to come and sections  include Emotion, Strategy, Tilt (lots on that one such as 'Injustice Tilt, Hate-Losing Tilt, Entitlement Tilt, Revenge Tilt & more), Fear, Motivation, and Confidence.

I can't imagine I am the only member of PSO feeling as I do. Thus I wonder if there are folks out there, from beginners to more advanced, who might want to join a study group. We could meet weekly or every other week, determine by consensus how much we review of the book, the parametres of our discussions and so on.

To get a flavour of Tendler, here is an excerpt on 'Mental Game Fish':
"Fish are fish because they believe things that aren't true... A solid  player is a mental game fish if they: ( I took liberty here in choosing some of the 17 he cites)::

*Never recognize when someone has played well vs. them and/or believe everyone they play against is bad and just gets lucky.

*Think the outcome of a hand can be changed by shouting, praying, or playing a favorite hand.

*Believe it's possible to own another player's soul.

* Play badly when the stakes are too small for them to care

* Tell bad beat stories to anyone that will listen, while doing nothing to improve how they react to bad beats."

Humor abounds but just as pro golfers, football, basketball, each Olympic team, have a type of mental coach, Tendler takes his task seriously. So, anyone for a study group?  Please leave me a note on PSO email with your thoughts, best times/days, etc. Maybe this could be the start of a poker book study group for all!.