Poker can be an incredible way to make a living, but that does not mean it’s easy or realistic. You can watch the video of Kara Scott and Rupert Elder and you will understand why.
At the beginning of this book, we briefly mentioned how television programs and the media in general have glorified the poker player and have made it a dream to be a player and lead their lifestyle. That’s good because many players without training believe they can achieve that lifestyle without spending time or effort. However, we have come here insisting that a poker player does not always enjoy everything and it’s “fun and laughter”. While there will be many great moments, the lifestyle of a poker player is truly that of a hard worker and you need a really hard routine to perform.
In this section, we will focus on showing the pros and cons of the professional poker player in terms of their lifestyle, helping you to fully understand what you should expect in the event that you become a professional.
Introduction | How to become a professional poker player
Let’s now analyze the advantages and disadvantages of this lifestyle that we want to show, the lifestyle of the professional poker player.
1. Advantages of being a poker professional:
- Choose your own schedule: being a poker player means you have to be your own boss: we can choose when to play, what game, what mode, when to take a vacation … Having these options is a luxury. Ultimately, being able to choose when you play means you have complete freedom in how you want to spend your workday.
- Do something you like: almost every professional poker player has a deep love and passion for the game. Even through the difficult times, which they experience along the way, the love for poker always draws them back to him. Doing something you love every day (that is, playing poker) can have a very satisfying impact on your life.
- Good economic income: most people are employees of a company and have financial compensation dictated by their superiors or by the State. Being your own boss as a poker player, however, you have more control over the amount of money you are going to make. How much (or how) you play will also have a direct influence on your income.
- Huge possibilities of success and impact in your sector: it can be an incredible feeling to be able to say that you have earned more money in a day than what most people earn in a year. This is a very real possibility with the structure of payments and prizes accumulated in certain tournaments. These great winnings also bring fame and notoriety: Winning poker titles can be an achievement and you can have a very prestigious and satisfying career.
- Age does not matter. Whether you’re young or old, anyone can play poker and play well. Players can start at any age and work quickly to develop strategies and skills that turn them into professionals.
- Freedom in decision-making: having freedom of action in many facets is an incredible feeling. The freedom that poker offers is worth it.
2) Disadvantages of being a poker professional:
- It can be exhausting in many ways: above all, when you are suffering from an episode of bad luck (negative variance) or a constant hand of mediocre hands or sessions, we can suffer psychological exhaustion. And is that mental fatigue and lack of constant concentration are necessary to make optimal decisions for each game.
- You may be losing days, weeks, months or years: just as there will be good days in poker, there will also be bad, even very bad ones. It is in these bad days when the management of our way of being will be an important factor in determining how disciplined we are as a successful long-term poker player. When it is lost it is especially important that we stay mentally strong.
- Your environment and your family may be against this decision: as the game of poker becomes a dedication, our parents and family members can oppose it outright. Society does not fully approve of poker as a lifestyle. Without this support, there may be a strong negative impact on our career.
- It is easy to lose our social life: this is especially true for online poker professionals since we will be many hours in the solitude of our house. You should try to make an effort to maintain a healthy social life: your physique and your mind will thank you.
- It is complicated to have a predictable and ordered life: poker can affect the development of work or training skills. Playing extra-long sessions, being constantly studying, watching poker videos, reviewing hand histories, and discussing poker with other players make us targets for not having free time: we must prevent poker from taking control of our lives.
- Sedentary: this is similar to what happens with office work and serves both the online game and the presecial. This sedentary lifestyle can be very unhealthy and we must face it by getting the right amount of exercise and eating the right foods every day to keep your mind and body in sync to play good poker.
As you can see, becoming professional or taking poker as something much more serious depends 100% on you. The game has no secrets. You need time to discover them and a strong enough personality to make the right decisions, stay disciplined, motivated and focused. In this way you will have a professional or semi-professional player career.