We as poker players struggle constantly, everyday, to find the balance. Both in our game and in our personal lives. It’s been said before but you have to have the balance. In the game it’s all a matter of finding the right amount of aggression for the game you’re in. Sometimes that means raising every other hand, sometimes it means sitting and waiting for the big hands. It’s all dictated by what is happening around us. If the rest of the table is being super aggro, it’s often correct to just sit and wait. Conversely if everyone else is playing the nit, then it is your job as a good player to start raising more and taking advantage or their nittyness.
In life it can often be more difficult. Finding the balance between putting in the massive amounts of time it takes to be successful at poker and still having a somewhat normal life is a challenge. There is no easy solution. It’s a matter of give and take and how much you personally can endure. I know for me, personally, if i put in too much time without some kind of a reset my game starts to falter. You need structure if you are going to do this full time. You need to have at least one day, preferably two that are just for you to relax and think about something other than this crazy game we play. If you don’t, it will consume you. Some people can take more than others, for each of us it will be different, but if you think you can play poker every single day and still be playing optimally you are kidding yourself. I had a stretch last month of two weeks where i know i wasn’t at the top of my game because i had allowed myself to get mentally fatigued. This is a mental game that we play and part of playing your best is making sure you are in the best mental state possible when you are playing.
In the end, anything that puts you in a better spot mentally is an edge for you as a player. Exercise, eating right, getting enough sleep, having a social life, enjoying your significant other if you have one. All of these things filter into your game and the better you are doing in all of them, the better you will do at the tables. We play poker because we love it, but we also play to make money and for the ability to make our own schedule and live our lives the way we want. Take advantage of that and live your life to the fullest. Carpi Diem and all that. Live your life, enjoy your life, take care of yourself and see how far it takes you at the tables.