Many people set off playing poker to win money, but as you play, you develop a shrewd likening to beating those at the table.
It’s a thrill that few other games or sports can match. However, spending hours at virtual or wooden tables can become tiresome, especially if you’re pursuing expert status.
While the 10,000 hours rule has been all but debunked, there is an in-set need for players to stay sharp and accrue lots of experience to get better.
Sometimes, to keep this going, you need to spend more hours at the table or studying the game than you would like.
Therefore, finding a way to spice things up and make the game interesting again is a good thing and can help you a lot at the beginning.
Observe Your Opponents
If you lack excitement at the table, you should concentrate on observing your opponents.
By seeing which poker hands they take to showdown, what betting lines and sizing they use with weak and strong holdings, you will be able to identify their patterns.
This will help you read other players and learn when to make a huge bluff or a hero call to take a massive pot, and that is always fun.
On top of that, you will be improving at a much better pace and will not feel bored, which is a huge win on its own.
Try a different poker room
Despite the ocean of poker options out there, most players will stick to a preferred poker website, most likely one designed for the sole purpose of hosting online poker games.
However, trying a different site might give you additional thrill and make things more fun if you feel stuck.
Instead of playing on big rooms, try something new and join a site that also offers casino games and betting, which tend to attract more recreational players. You can check this site to see some of the options and remember that you might actually find a hidden gem somewhere.
Enjoy another game
If you always play Texas Holdem, then it might be worth giving another format a try. There are plenty of variations to choose from, so do not limit yourself to one or two games, and if this helps you relax, make sure to give yourself some time to enjoy it.
On top of being exciting, learning a new format can make you a better player in your own game.
Maybe you want to learn Pot Limit Omaha rules and try a four card game? The excitement of multiple draws, close races, and a lot of action can surely spice things up.
Maybe you want to play without community cards and will dive into 7 Card Stud? This game is also amazing!
There are plenty of options, and if you can learn a thing or two by trying out a new game, maybe that is not a bad idea?
Try playing hands blind
This idea might seem ridiculous at the beginning, but read it through and judge only then.
Annette Obrestad, also known as Annette_15 or ‘The Huntress’, is a world-renowned professional poker player from Norway.
She rose to prominence in 2007 by becoming the youngest ever World Series of Poker bracelet winner at that time by claiming the inaugural World Series of Poker Europe Main Event on the eve of her 19th birthday.
Obrestad has been a point of interest in the poker world, with her stories of playing blind being particularly intriguing.
She started playing poker and learned how to assess her opponents online, testing her skill by playing with her hole cards hidden.
Through doing so, she had to focus all of her attention on the actions and reactions of players at the table and ended up winning online tournaments using this method.
Obviously, playing cash games without seeing your cards would be a disaster, and you should never try it.
However, this could be a very good training situation for ICM spots in tournaments and sit&goes, where your cards do not matter so much, and you should be playing your opponent and situation instead.
If you learn that, you will likely have the edge over other players and will be reading these situations much better.
Just make sure not to put too much money on the line while training, and you should be good.
Concentrate on learning
While most studying should be made away from the table by analyzing your hands and opponents, you can also learn a lot while playing.
The most important thing is to concentrate on one area that you are trying to improve.
This way, you can observe how best regulars play in this specific spot and adopt new strategies yourself. While this is not the most effective way in a vacuum, combined with post-session studying, it can help you improve much faster.
On top of that, you will not feel bored because you will stay concentrated on the game that you play, so the time will fly, and most likely, you will enjoy it as well.
Give yourself some time away from the tables
Lastly, if you are really tired of poker, just take a break. Forcing yourself to play will not lead to good results, and many players have proven this already.
Take some time for yourself, watch a movie, go out with your friends or play football.
Whatever helps you take your thoughts away from the game, give it a try.
Also, if you need a longer break, do not hesitate to take a couple of days off. It is much better to play less, but when you are on top of your game than try to put as many hours as possible when underperforming.