We can start the feedback loop anywhere as it will come back to the same point, but I want to start and end off with prepare. What you do before your start playing your session? Are you doing what you have been told because it rationally makes sense? In other words, are you doing it with your head, or really doing things that work for you that have the desired outcome, aka feeling it in your body?
In our program The Mechanics of Poker we go over various ways to improve your performance by preparing well but in this principle, I want to focus on the importance of setting the intention to observe and gather information while playing. In order to improve we must identify areas in our poker playing that are sub-optimal. There is so much to learn about your self in a poker session. Unfortunately, too many players don’t see this as information they need to process to improve and instead just hope they play well or that certain mistakes in the past don’t repeat itself.
Players prefer to keep the door shut as letting everything in can feel very overwhelming. This is because they don’t separate the player, the person experiencing the event, from the observer, the sort of coach on the sideline observing the player from a distance. When we start observing when and by what we get triggered in a certain way of feeling, thinking, and reacting that is not helping us make better decisions and play out our session in the most +EV way as possible, we can use this information and start processing it in our feedback loop.
But in order to do that we must set the intention to be curious and observative for information before our session, and distance ourselves from the events by becoming the observer changing our association and the way we experience these triggers, emotions, making mistakes and tilt. Always have a notepad open to write stuff down, you’re going to need it later in the feedback loop!
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