Tilt & Rage Betting: How to avoid losing against yourself
One of the outstanding qualities of a skillful poker player is the ability to grind out results in tough games and against all odds. Successful poker players don’t just rely on their natural talents; they master a lot of concepts to perfect their skills. One of such concepts is the ability to put their emotions in check, avoid losing against themselves and avoid tilt while playing online poker games. Although, sometimes, poker tilt can be a blessing in disguise, your greatest weapon but most times it is your worst enemy and can lead to your undoing.
This article provides in-depth, well detailed, and comprehensive insights into tilt and rage betting. Everything you need to know about tilt and rage betting and how to avoid losing against yourself.
- Tilt is a poker terminology for poor poker play
- It is very difficult to avoid tilt in the game of poker
- Being in the right emotional state before playing poker games is crucial to controlling tilt
Tilt and Range Betting Explained
Tilt is a poker terminology for poor poker play due to mental or emotional distress, frustration and confusion usually resulting in anger and over-aggression on the part of the player. This anger is usually caused by series of circumstances such as bluff gone wrong, long hours of playing, concurrent loss of coin flips, bad beats, having an adverse reaction to something said by someone else or losing to a player you are better than. All of these circumstances can make a player lose his emotional control even if the event is not related to poker in any way.
Avoiding tilt in a game of poker is very important because poker is a decision game and like alcohol or drugs, emotional distress such as aggression and anger undermines your capacity to reason logically and rationally. If your ability to reason effectively is affected then you won’t be at your best to win games. And it is essential that you be at your best when playing poker games whether real or virtual because of the competitive nature of poker.
However, sometimes, it’s very difficult to avoid tilt in the game of poker, so it is imperative for all players to master the act of adapting to these situations if they couldn’t find a way to avoid tilt.
The Scale of Tilt
Tilt is simply a scale of behaviors with uncontrollable rage at one end of the scale and peace and happiness at the other end and in-between the scale are the series of emotions, beginning with unhappiness, disappointment, annoyance, frustration, irritation, anger which finally results in uncontrollable rage.
The aim and objective of all poker players should be towards closing the gap on the side of happiness and peace on the scale. Being on the side of happiness and peace gives you the ability to think straight and clearly. Thus, you will be able to make the best possible decisions. But as you tilt towards the rage side of the scale, you start to lose your ability to think rationally, which means that you are no longer at your best to play your ‘A’ game.
Poker is not an instinctive game. Poker is a game that requires the highest level of concentration and critical thinking. Thus, poker is a game played by highly intelligent persons.
Many players usually see tilt as a response to situations that occur exclusively while engaging poker games, but, this is not generally true because most humans carry emotional baggage amassed during the day around. Being in traffic for a long time, having a bad review from a superior, having marital and family issues and so on are part of the emotional baggage that we carry around. All these circumstances will affect your emotional state when you play poker. Sometimes, you don’t realize it until you lean towards the uncontrollable rage end of the scale. This means that your capacity to think straight, lucidly and make right decisions has been affected even before you start the start of the game.
Hence, it is essential that you check your emotional level before you play poker. If your mood is bad, please take some time out to find happiness. You can find happiness by doing some things that interests you, watch some funny videos, checkup on your friends, walk through the neighborhood, and listen to cool soothing music to put you in the right state of mind. You may also engage in some form of exercise to release endorphins which activate positive body feelings that reduce stress and elevate your mood. The exercise will also burn calories that will not only give you a good feeling but also impact your play positively by putting you in the proper mindset.
Being in the right emotional level and proper mindset before playing poker games is crucial to controlling tilt, which usually hides behind the scenes, looking for an excuse to impact your game negatively.
Recognizing Tilt Causes and Symptoms
Tilt occurs slowly, it takes several minutes and hours to move from one end of the scale to the other end. Many poker players know that their cards will not consistently hold up and can endure a missed draw or bad beat. Tilt gradually occurs when players suffer a series of these circumstances within a short time. Every poker player has a tilt trigger peculiar to him or her. The most popular tilt triggers include recurrence of dead card, which causes frustration and bad beats which causes anger.
To acknowledge your position on the tilt scale, you must begin to observe how you react when any of the trigger circumstances happen. If you are indifferent when your opponent plays a two-outer, then your emotional state is still perfect. But if you feel an urge to complain about the style of play of your opponent or feel an urge to input a fiery statement into the chat-box, then you should be alert about your position on the scale because that is a warning.
Early detection and identification of the warning signs is a key to overcoming tilt. Tilt is easier to control if you identify it early enough because this gives your brain the mental alertness to think rationally and logically. Your brain also initiates a process that triggers the techniques you’ve prepared for combating tilt. If you fail to realize that you are at the uncontrollable rage end of the scale until you start acting irrationally by throwing things and complaining at every little thing, you may be unable to get yourself back under control.
Strategies for Avoiding Tilt
Know When to Quit
The best approach to avoid tilt is to know when to quit. The hardest decision any player can make is to put this strategy into practice. It is usually very difficult to quit when you are losing a lot of money, your instant response is to win back your lost money as soon as possible. Although this is normal, there is a higher chance that you will end up losing more money eventually.
It is very rare for a player who is on a tilt to make up his lost money back immediately. If anything, the tilt will aggravate your anger, thus inflating your loss.
Another strategy employed by players to reduce the negative impact of tilt is to change games at will. It is usually better to play blackjack or roulette when you are tilted rather than continuously losing money on poker. This is because tilted poker puts you at more risk, whereas games like blackjack and roulette give you a higher winning chance or lower losing streak. Although table and casino games are not the best place to hide your head, they are better than playing tilted poker.
Limiting Your Losses
You can also control your losses by setting a limit on the amount of money you spend on poker games. You can decide to stop playing if you lose three competitive games simultaneously. It is usual for you to want to break this limit to immediately win back your lost money. However, you might get more angry and aggressive if you end up losing more games.
Players deal with losses differently, so the time to leave poker games varies for players, but it’s a bad idea to try to wriggle out of a losing streak.
Take a Break
Another good option for you is to take a break when tilted. The break must be long enough to reduce the tilt and must not be cut short. You may leave the computer or table to do something different like watching funny videos on your phone, eating something, pouring water on your face and so on just to reduce the pressure. You will undoubtedly return to the game refreshed and better. Also make sure you don’t check your hand history, just start afresh because if you do you might notice that you missed a hand and you will become angrier, thus defeating the essence of the break you took.
Accept That You Can’t Improve Without Failing
Accept that no one is infallible. Winning and losing is the main essence of competitions, and you can’t win at all times. What distinguishes great players from good players is their ability to come back stronger from these drawbacks. The loss serves as learning process for you. Always take out time to review how you played and how to get better.
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