Most people have no idea what it takes to play poker for a living.
Before deciding to choose this path, let me warn you of the disadvantages first. Poker has many benefits, but it also has many negative consequences that come with playing long hours.
This guide will allow you to make the right decision by learning from someone who actually plays for a living.
How Do I Play Poker for a Living?
The first thing you need to play any game for a living is patience. Playing every day, all day, can get extremely tiring.
Staring at a computer screen for hours on end can literally drive you insane. In addition, your fortunes online are prone to wild swings. You will occasionally sit down at a table and not get any cards for hours.
Be prepared to take the worst beats of your life along with huge runs that will make your bankroll soar.
Playing for a living requires extreme mental discipline and a steady game plan. It's a good idea to record how many hours you play each day and what your total profit for the day is.
Do this for a month or two before you make the switch to becoming a full-time player. This will allow you to analyze your play and find out how much you make on average.
Cons of Playing Poker for a Living
1. No set income: Some months you'll actually experience a loss in total earnings. You must be able to cope with this and still have the confidence you need to win. You'll encounter some horrible runs along the way so be prepared.
2. Exhaustion: You'll constantly be tired if you're playing all day. If you're playing really high limits, you may not have to play all day to make a living. The fact is that most of us will need to grind it out all day to pay rent and bills and buy food.
3. Reduced family time: Since you must make your money playing poker, you'll tend to spend less time with your family. When a good poker player encounters a bad run, he or she will grind it out until they prevail.
This may call for some extremely long hours of play. Be prepared to play poker at any time. On losing months you'll need to spend even more time on the computer or at the casino.
Pros of Playing Poker for a Living
There are many advantages that help balance out playing poker for a living. I love that you get to choose your own hours to work on any day you wish.
You can take off as many days as you want and never be hassled to wake up at 8 a.m. - or, god forbid, earlier. You'll also be playing one of the most intriguing games in the world for money. Who could ask for more? It's a great lifestyle if you're a winning player.
The fact is, most people can't handle the swings that are unavoidable in full-time play. Every time you sit at the table you must change your personality and play with ice water in your veins.
When you take a bad beat, you can't let it affect you. You must deal with the swings on a regular basis. You must also be a dedicated soul who will play even when the cards aren't going your way. You must be a very disciplined and winning poker player to play for a living.
I hope this article hasn't discouraged you if you have dreams of playing professionally. If you believe you can do it, you'll buy every book and read everything you can get your hands on to become a winning player.
See you at the tables.