2013 was a disappointing year for me at the tables. My bankroll continued to grow slowly, but my volume was down and searching for a profitable game I neglected to make any move up the stake levels. In fact, the gravitational pull of the lowest stakes proved too strong for me. Every time things went wrong I took a longish break, then swam back towards the safer waters, instead of challenging myself to improve.

I didn't really set out any goals for the year. Partly as a result, my game drifted and I became rather disillusioned as I failed to make any significant profit from any of the game variants I tried. I drifted from cash, to zoom, to STT, to small field MTT, to large field MTT, and finally back to STTs again.

So now is a good time to take stock and set myself some new goals for 2014, and try and get my game back on track.

I ended the year playing $1.50 knockout single table Sit n Goes. There were enjoyable and the fields softer than the regular and turbo equivalents. I beat them for about a 15% ROI, which was nice but a low return given the small stakes, and not enough to keep me playing them.

I've decided to go back to Cash games. The FPPs and bonuses are better, and the potential progression through the stakes should be smoother too. It is just a better documented path.

My overall target for the year is to make it to 25nl and make myself into a winning player at that level.

Looking at my stats so far, a few things are obvious. I can comfortably beat 2nl - I have wasted far too much time proving this. I win for a better rate at full ring than 6 max. And better at normal speed than Zoom. I'd love to work out why my Zoom results have been so poor, but that's for another time.

So, to start with this year I will be playing full ring 5nl, with the aim of getting in some volume, and improving my game and winrate there, over a decent sample, before moving up to 10nl. I have more than enough bankroll for it, so it's just a case of moving up whenever I am sure I am ready.

So here are my targets:

45k hands per month. If not achievable any month, then a mimumum of 30k. If 45k reached, then give self bonus for reaching 60k.

One hour study/review per eight hours play.

100k hands minimum with positive winrate per stake level before moving up. If not winning at stake, increase study time, reduce play volume. Resist dropping back down in stake unless bankroll concerns demand it. Any dabbling in MTTs, satellites etc should always be in addition to cash volume, not instead of it.

By year end, reach 25nl and play 100k hands there with a positive winrate.

So, there it is, my hostage to fortune for 2014. Wish me luck.