Only a few minutes into the session and I have this feeling of unease creeping into my brain. On my very first spot already I feel like I should have folded preflop knowing that by clicking that "call" button there would be no easy way to win this hand. Some reg wins the first coinflip against me preflop, in the next All-In spot some whale spikes a tenball with his AT against my AK and comments with a polite "Boooooom!" in the chatbox. Next thing I know is I am down 3 stacks and make a frustrated rivercall while completely ignoring my sense of timings.

"Can't win a singe pot, can I?"

"I play so bad today."

"Obviously there has to be a downer after each up."

"They're reading me like an open book!"


I let the rubberband smack my wrist to stop those negative thoughts from entering my mind and preventing me from delivering my A-game. It helps me to remain focused and dissolve this mist of negativity I sometimes conjur around me.

The Flix of past times would have given in to this temptation far too often and - I have to admit - would have even enjoyed this negative state of mind a little somehow. It was a state that would allow me to let go of all my responsibilites that a good poker player has. After all, there is nothing you can do about the cards or the villains, right? Bleh.

If you start abusing those negative thoughts for purposes like that you will most likely end up at the cliff of a self-fulfilling prophecy, a downward spiral, a burnout even - a place that I visited last year and would prefer to never go back to again.

I have created for myself an entirely new modus operandi and opened up the way of positive thoughts back to my poker mind again. Some of the measures that I took might even seem pathetic or ridiculous, but they help me: Before I start a session I put my favorite blue hoodie on that I always wore during my most successful and motivating Vegas cashgame sessions. I put on my rubber band as a reminder and a guardian to protect me from negative thoughts coming back. I riffle 10 white chips in my left hand while clicking buttons on the right. Those things help me focus. What I need to play good poker is:

Confidence, trust in my abilities, my knowledge and my lines of thinking, cool-headedness and goodwill even towards my own mistakes.

PMA - Positive Mental Attitude!

January Review

Even though this first month of the year isn't over yet I have gone through a ton of positive and refreshening experiences that I wanted to share with you. The PMA thing is only one part of those.

This month has been a real blessing to my game and my motivation. I am more than content with how I played and with my results - even with my mistakes, as they pointed me towards stuff that I still need to improve on. I am happy with my session planning and I pretty much completed all the goals that I had set for myself at the end of last year (see my first blog entry). I have fit in a session every day since Jan 1st, even if it only lasted for no longer than half an hour. This "training" effect has proven to be so valuable to my game and my mindset. I will try to keep it up and strive to improve on finding the right times to quit when I can't give my best or extend a session when I feel at the top of my game

Hand of the Week

The opener is a pro shortstacker and Villain is a solid Reg with 21/16/1 stats on 123 hands. Flatting preflop is kind of close given the nature of the two villains but there were recreational players in the blinds who I expected to join the party and increase my implied odds.

Are we happy folding bottom set here?

That's it for today's blog entry, good luck with your sunday grind everyone and thanks for reading!

- Flix