Of all the card games played across the world, one of the most popular is poker. Most people can find a version of the game they enjoy, and as technology has developed we spend more time online playing it. Approximately 3.2% of adults in the UK play poker online, and an impressive 10.1% of the US adult population – and worldwide, around 40 million people play regularly. However, it can be a tricky game to master and many people worry about losing too many bets to their friends. So, here are a few everyday skills that can be translated into poker talent.
Discipline and Patience
Many of us have honed these skills at work and at home. Patience is needed to learn new things, to raise families, and to keep us grounded in everyday life. Discipline is equally important, such as for keeping fit and healthy. But also for being a good worker and for staying on top of personal things too. Both of these qualities are also important in poker – you need the ability to wait for good hands, and to control your emotions when things might not go in your favour. The best advice for this is probably that practice makes perfect, and if you think you might struggle, it’s worth playing blackjack online to learn your own behaviours and consider where you need to improve. There are many variants available, and you can even play blackjack online with a live dealer.
Mathematics is probably the most obvious thing to get a handle on before you attempt any game, but poker players are especially adept at this because a good player will be able to calculate the probability of other players’ hands and what cards they need to win. These skills are often found in working life, especially if you work in finance, accounts, or data but they are still accessible no matter what you do.
However, even if you only use your maths skills when adding up the weekly shop or measuring the speed of a morning run, you can still build on what you know. It is the difference between an amateur player and a good player. This is often something that gets ignored when people start playing.
Another important ability is to be able to understand others, as well as ourselves. This might seem like something a person is born with or that only seasoned players can do, but we actually do this every single day in every interaction that we have. When we talk to someone, we look at their facial microexpressions without even realising, to match their tone and empathise with what they’re talking about.
This is incredibly important in poker because if you can read when another player is bluffing or planning a specific strategy then you can counter their actions and protect your own hand to beat them. This comes with time and practice as well, so it’s worth playing with others as well as online to see how much you can learn from their expressions.
The most important thing is to play the way you enjoy it, because your skills will improve with time, and poker should be open to everyone.