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The Anti Tilt

The Anti-Tilt
By Loki Luchs of Predictem.com

There is a major flaw in the theory of the universe: Life isnít fair. If Iím the first person to tell you that, you need to buy a fín helmet. If youíre a 49:1 favorite, youíre going to end up losing roughly once out of every fifty hands. Players never seem to bitch and moan when theyíre the ones doing the out-drawing, so why should they when they have the out-drawing done to them? Itís true that the total number of out-draw a bad player has is going to be greater than a good player; this is because good players donít go in with the worst hand less often than bad players do. This is what makes them good players in the first place! The overall percentage of the time they outdraw, however, is roughly the same.

Despite this basic truth, good players often change into raving lunatics after a few outdraws. They become emotional, berate other players and the dealers, and eventually stop using their heads during the game. In short: they go on tilt. Keeping yourself from going on tilt is one of the most important things a player can do; itís a basic ability to deal with adversity. One way that you can do this is to take off the diapers and pull on your big-boy/girl pants and act like an adult. If this is too hard for you, there are some other strategies that you may want to start using:

1. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that if you made the same play a thousand times, youíd make money in the long run.

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2. Get up and take a walk. The money youíll spend on the blinds for 15 minutes will pale in comparison to the money that you WONíT lose by going on tilt.

3. Smoke a cigarette. Iím not one to advocate cancer-sticks, but if you arenít afraid of a quick light-up, youíll give yourself time and nicotine to calm down. If this is something that helps you out at the table, donít shrug it off; frankly, I like a lot more smokers than I do a-holes.

4. Stretch. The tension that is caused by stressful situations can constrict the muscles and thereby increase blood pressure. By rolling your shoulders, stretching your muscles and loosening your joints, you actively reduce blood pressure that can act against your game.

5. Join a cult. They seem pretty relaxed.

While this seems like common sense, itís actually pretty rare to see at a table. In many cases, I just watch the player come to a boil and have steam shoot out of their ears. Probably just as helpful as the ďto doísĒ are the ďdonítsĒ.

1. Donít let inertia get the better of you. Donít refuse to take a break just because it means you have to get up and move. Lazy, angry people end up moving when theyíre dead broke.

2. Donít get revenge. Going out of your way to get the guy who got you is pointless. You simultaneously stop playing against the other 8 players while they single you out for destruction. Everyone at the table has money and it spends the same regardless who it comes from!

3. Donít berate the other player. Thereís no easier way to lose a fish whoís having fun than to make him stop having fun. Congratulating him on a good play keeps him longer and increases your opportunities to exploit his weaknesses.

4. Donít order a drink. The only thing worse than an a-hole at the table is a drunk a-hole at the table. Just because you think that everyone at the table is a bad player, doesnít mean that they wonít notice when youíre getting wasted.

5. Donít take it out on the staff. The dealer and waitress have as much control of the cards as the gravitational pull of the moon does. Blaming them only reinforces the entire table to punish you for your tiltiness.

The fact of the matter is this: Life isn't fair. Don't expect it to be. The game of poker is a type of gambling for a reason. If you have no control over the game, it becomes no different than rolling dice or spinning the roulette wheel. By keeping a level head through the fluctuations in probability and the players who know how to get under your skin, only then will you be able to keep your game from taking the DiCaprio plunge.

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