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Top 5 Life Lessons I Learned From Playing Poker

life lessons learned from poker

3 minutes

Posted by: Ivan

No matter how lucky you are or how hard you work, in poker, just like in real life, you are bound to experience both the highs and the lows.

And while the ups are certainly more enjoyable to go through than the downs, both can teach you precious lessons along the way.

In the many years I've played poker, I’ve gone through many peaks and valleys. In those years of playing, I found out that the learning process never stops in poker.

What’s more, many of the things I’ve learned through the game proved to be very useful in real-life situations. With that in mind, here are the five most valuable lessons I learned from playing poker.

5. Skill Leads, But Luck Makes a Difference

There’s no arguing that you can’t make a living playing poker if you don’t have a certain skill level.

Nevertheless, even in a game so dominated by skill, luck can sometimes play the determining factor, especially if you also like to dabble with New Zealand poker casinos.

In life, you’re facing different circumstances and more nuanced situations, but both of these elements still play a big role.

If you work hard and develop your skills, you will set yourself in the right position. Then, you often need just a little bit of luck, and you’ll go over the threshold and advance.

4. Risk Versus Reward

When playing poker, you can’t count on always getting the right cards to help you win. In fact, most of the time, you need to weigh the potential risk and reward of the move you want to make.

what poker can teach you about life

If you don’t take any risks, you’ll likely eventually lose your entire bankroll. Of course, it’s smart to play safe, but if you’re afraid to risk a bit more money when you notice a good opportunity, you’ll never get ahead in the game.

This might sound like a cliche, but the same applies in life.

You don’t always get dealt the best cards. Sometimes, you need to take calculated risks to make the best of your circumstances.

3. Bankroll Management

When we’re kids, we learn many useless things in school. But, one valuable thing we often don’t learn until we’re adults is how to budget and take care of our finances.

Many people never learn how to do so. Of all the things in the world, poker was the one to teach me how to keep a tight lid over my finances.

While it did involve some ups and downs, and a lot of hair-pulling, I learned along the way that bankroll management is key in poker.

The way you budget and take care of your poker funds directly impacts how successful you’ll be. This is undoubtedly one of the most valuable lessons and one that I hope I knew when I started my poker journey.

2. Cutting Losses

No matter how good of a poker player I thought I was, I couldn’t escape painful losing streaks. And while I understood that they are a part of every player’s poker journey, it certainly wasn’t pleasant to experience them.

But, what I learned from one of the (many) losing streaks over the years is how to pull the ripcord when things are going bad.

key life lessons from poker

Chasing losses and trying to recoup during bad poker downswings only puts you in a worse spot. Sometimes it's best to reconcile that you’ve lost money and quit before you lose even more.

This is a valuable life lesson that has helped me many times in personal and business situations.

Just because I’ve invested time and money into a specific situation, I shouldn’t be adamant about going down with the ship if it doesn’t pan out as I hoped it would.

1. Discipline and Patience

By far, the most important lesson I learned from playing poker is how to be disciplined and patient.

We tend to take things for granted in life. We make moves without thinking and decide impulsively or simply because we can’t be bothered to wait for some time.

But, as I’ve learned from poker throughout the years, patience and discipline always pay off.

If you’re disciplined, patient, and willing to wait for the right circumstances, the opportunity you’re seeking will always come!

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