Poker: Complaining Costs Money

Poker is more than just a game we play. It’s a test of our will and how well you can adjust to adversity. When faced with bad luck many players will go off on rants about how poorly someone is playing, or how bad their luck is, etc. Everyone must face adversity in poker, time and time again, but learning to plug up your mouth and to stick to the game is a leak only some are able to eliminate. This is important not just because you don’t want to look like a cry baby at the table, but it’s also a costly habit for a couple of reasons.

First off, you expose to your opponents that you’re an emotional player who may be capable of being rattled and thrown off their game. Good players will wait for a situation where bad luck finds you, and rub a bit of salt into the wounds to make you steam even more. With a target on your back like that you’re often in a situation where everyone at the table is gunning for you, and it makes for a steeper hill to climb. It also defines you as a negative person, and everyone likes to be in hands against negative players.

Secondly, complaining is the precursor to tilt. When you start blaming everything around for your misfortunes it’s usually not long before you adopt the “I don’t care anymore” attitude, and start to dump your remaining chips at lightning speed. Good players recognize this and the sharks will start to circle around you like you were a bleeding seal.

So even if you’re steaming inside, never let them see you sweat. Save the complaining for the mirror, it’s the only place where it can sometimes do some good.