I like to reference Cumicon, because he has one of the best poker graphs of all time (see below), if not THE best. One of the things I like to do is analyze what mental game traits the best people have, in order to copy or emulate their style for similar successes.
What I like most about his graph is it's almost a strait line up. Meaning the slope of the line, is nearly the same the entire run. A lot of people seem to think that upswings and downswings are just a part of poker, but I disagree. They are if you want them to be, or if you program them into your subconscious mind, then yes they will manifest. But if you decide to refrain from wanting them, like Cumicon did, and put the the massive amount of work required, it's likely you can achieve success like this as well.
I want to discuss, what I think his
#1 MENTAL GAME ABILITY
is. I watched Joe Ingram interview Cumicon here. I originally listened to it a couple years ago on Joe Ingram's podcast (audio version) and it always stuck in my mind. I watched it again recently to see what I could learn about his tremendous success.
At 51:45 Joe asks him if he is proud about what he's done.
I'm definitely... proud of it, it was so much work... there's no way I'm not proud of it.... No question I'm ....pretty stoked about what I did.
And at 52:30 Joe asks him if he has any sort of emotion.
Yea...I definitely have higher levels of emotional control than most people....I do not... let my emotions affect my play to much...
At 52:45 Joe asks him if he feels a lot of strong emotions outside of poker.
I don't know, I would think most people would think of me as being pretty even keeled...I'm pretty in control of my emotions...
I noticed that Cumicon didn't show much emotion in the interview as well. That's one thing that I teach is being able to
TURN THE SWITCH OFF
when away from the table. Otherwise everything in your life can seem like a grind. So that may be one area of improvement for him.
Anyway, lets talk about what I think Cumicon's #1 mental game ability is and the reasons I believe Cumicon was so successful.
His #1 mental game ability is what I already covered so far. His ability to have control of his emotions and not let them affect his play very much.
So what are the reasons for his success?
- High level of emotional control, on and off of the poker table
- Putting in a shit ton of work
- His ability to read people, from playing so many hands
The rest is just learning PLO and putting in the hours. His ability to read people comes from his intuition from playing so many hands. This kind of experience can't be gained in any other way than putting in the hours, so that you are familiar with so many different spots that can come up in the game.
As a poker mindset coach, I teach the same thing about achieving a high level of emotional control. This is something that can be learned and takes years to master, at least for most people. I've been studying the mind for 5+ years and I'm still learning. Life is an odyssey of the mind, in many ways, but most people don't take the time to study the mind, even though it plays a critical role in their lives.
Aside from that, what I think can help someone stay in emotional control is
- Keep perspective. If you have a losing session, zoom out and realize it's only a tiny dip on a big 5 or 10 year chart.
- And secondly, refrain from over-celebrating wins. With the highs comes the lows. Which we learned from Justin Gaethje.
- And lastly if you feel like you're going on tilt, the best option might be to walk away, either cash out or take a 15 walk around the casino.
I'll be covering more things that you can do a how to prevent poker tilt article, but those are the some of the most important ones. And that's going to wrap up this article.