5 Ways That Poker Can Benefit You Outside of the Poker Table
Poker is a game that involves a lot of thinking, strategy and math. There are a lot of benefits to playing poker that can be applied in life outside of the poker table, and these include:
1. Improves critical thinking skills
A big chunk of poker success is how well you assess your own hand and that of your opponents. If you’re not good at this, you will struggle at the poker tables and in other aspects of your life. This is why it’s so important to always be thinking and never get too emotional about a hand.
2. Trains you to be patient
This is probably one of the biggest lessons that poker teaches you. It can be so frustrating when you’re playing and you’re just waiting for your turn. This is especially true when you’re facing a huge pot and everyone at the table seems to have a strong hand. However, if you can learn to be patient and stick to your bankroll – both in the short term and long term – you will have much more success at the poker table and will have a much happier life overall.
3. Teaches you to read people
Poker requires a high level of social awareness, and is an excellent way to develop these skills. It teaches you to read your opponents, and understand their motivation and reasoning. If you’re able to do this, it will make your bluffing a whole lot better. In addition, it will also help you to recognize emotions like fear, anxiety and excitement in other people, which will make your interactions more interesting and fulfilling.
4. Improves your learning/studying ability
Poker forces you to study and practice a lot of different concepts simultaneously. You need to know about probability, game theory and psychology, as well as how to make decisions under pressure. It’s also a great way to develop your mental discipline as you have to sit through countless losing sessions and try not to get discouraged by these losses.
5. Helps you build a bankroll
One of the most important things to do when you’re starting out in poker is to learn how to manage your money and bankroll. This is something that many players fail to do and they end up burning through their bankroll in a matter of weeks or months. This is why it’s so important that you set a budget for your poker play and stick to it.
6. Improves your BS detection abilities
In poker, you have to be able to detect bluffs and deception from other players. A lot of the time, this is about being able to read what other players have in their hands. For example, if you see someone check-calling in late position on a flop of A-2-6, it’s likely that they have two pair and are trying to trap you. By studying the game and reading poker books, you can pick up on these tells pretty quickly.