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Poker News | Online Poker | News

Dealing With Tilt!

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Everyone tilts to some extent and some players deal with it better than others but, why?

How can some players take a bad beat and shrug it off while others let it affect their play? They berate other players, complain about their bad luck or have to stop playing altogether.

As you gain more experience with poker, you should become accustomed to encountering bad beats. Getting all your money in as a 4-1 favorite and losing one of every five races is part of the game. You know this. But, it can still sting badly when it occurs at a final table or on the money bubble of an MTT.

What should you do when you’ve just taken a sick beat? Tilt is not an emotion you can easily suppress.

One way to deal with tilt is by expressing your anger. Punch a wall, kick the dog, or throw the remote control through your TV. I highly discourage this unless you like patching holes, vet bills, or buying a new TV after every bad beat.

I have a baseball sitting in front of my computer that I used as a child, playing ball with the rest of the kids in our neighborhood. We’d play for hours and whether I won or lost, I always had an incredible time. I knew I could come back the next day and do it all over again. I loved the game of baseball.

After a bad beat I take that baseball, lean back in my chair, hold it up to my nose and take a deep whiff. The first thing that comes to mind is hitting that ball and running the bases. I’m reminded of my passion for the game. I look back at the table where I lost all my chips and remind myself that poker is also just a game.

I think back to how I lost all my chips and run the hand through my head to consider what I may have done wrong or could’ve done differently. In some cases, there are one or several mistakes. One mistake can lead to another. Sometimes there’s nothing I would change about my actions. The cards just didn’t fall as expected. Then, I take a short break and fire up a Bodog Poker cash table with a positive mindset.

Try it. Find something from a past experience that will put you in a positive mindset and keep it near your computer for your next inevitable bad beat. Get in the habit of running your last hand through your head to determine what you could’ve done differently. No one plays perfect poker all the time. Don’t go back to the table until you feel you’re completely over the last beat and you’re ready to play you’re “A” game.

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