Let’s be honest, how many of you reading this article have wanted to become an online poker pro at some point in your playing career? I know I have – and more than once.
Being able to play poker for a living seems like the perfect job for someone who loves poker at least. But it’s harder than you’d like to think. How to become an online poker pro? We have six tips to help you find the job of your dreams.
How to become a professional online poker player in one easy step would be to quit your job and use poker as your sole source of income. While this will make you a poker pro instantly, it is not advisable to sour like this on a whim for reasons which we will cover shortly.
Study All Aspects Of The Game
Studying the game of poker is crucial if you want to learn how to be successful as a professional online poker player. When you think you’ve learned all there is to learn about poker, you need to study and research even more. In fact, you should never stop learning because standing still in this game means you are going to be left behind.
Read articles online, browse forums, chat with other players, join a training site or hire a coach . Any advantage you can create for yourself will eventually lead to profits.
Prove You Are A Winning Player
Remember we said it wasn’t a good idea to give your notice and become a professional poker player? One of the main reasons is that you must first prove to yourself that you know how to become a profitable online poker player.
A lot of people do a big performance in a tournament, or earn the equivalent of two months salary at the cash tables and start to think of this game as an easy way to make a living. False !
You need tens of thousands of hands and tournaments (or even hundreds of thousands) to prove that you are a winning player. If you are not a long-term winning poker player, you will soon be returning to your former boss hoping to be re-employed, and your morale will most likely be down after such a failure.
Once you’ve verified that you’re a winning poker player, it’s time to start trying to figure out how many hands or tournaments you’ll need to play in order to at least match your previous pay. This is where a lot of people fail.
When you have a salaried job, you usually get paid on the same date each month, no matter how productive your week or month (within reason) is. You almost certainly get paid while on vacation or if you are sick.
Having to go to work five days a week is probably enough to get you out of bed and going to work. But what if none of this were true?
You may have the ambition to earn € 50,000 per year and it may be possible. But be sure to factor in at least three full weeks of “vacation”. You should also plan to be sick and unable to play for a few weeks per year. Also, ask yourself if you are really going to sit and play 60 hours a week? Do you think you can earn enough money at 0.25 / 0.50 € to justify quitting your job?
How many online poker pros are there who wake up at 12:00, play online poker for two hours, and make the most of life? The answer is not much, and those who do usually do not succeed as professional online poker players for any significant length of time.
Take A Trial Period As A Pro Player
Even if you have done all of the above, you should at least give it a try before declaring yourself to be a pro online poker player.
Take a week’s vacation from your job and spend the next five working days playing poker (at least you’ll get paid even if you have a bad week!). You might surprise yourself how hard it is to motivate yourself to play poker nonstop for a week. Or how after four hours of grinding (grinder = playing cash games for hours as a regular player) you suddenly lose focus. Or how after losing 15 cellars in the first three days, you don’t want to get out of bed at 7am anymore.
It’s best to find out that you’re not cut out for the life of a poker pro before taking the plunge into professional life.
Also, another factor that I have encountered in the past, the hours you work out are not necessarily when poker pays off. In cash games, the tables turn mostly at the end of the day and in the evening. Now, if you wanted to get pro playing in the morning and enjoy your family in the evening, that may not be possible.
Build A Real Bankroll
You haven’t taken all of the previous steps yet, but you still think you know how to become an online poker pro. That’s great, but do you have a bank account and your other finances in order?
Most poker pros like to have at least six months of living expenses in a separate bank account in case things go wrong. Digging into your bankroll to cover your bills is a big no-no-no.
Your bankroll should be bigger than that of a recreational player would have because you don’t want and can’t go down limits (that would totally change your hourly earnings).
It is better to be too conservative with your bankroll than to go penniless!
Professional poker players often cite the freedom to gamble for a living, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a professional attitude towards work. Some of the best poker players in the world are extremely disciplined and in their approach every day.
You won’t be working drunk, tired, with your feet on the desk, a netflix movie on the other screen… So don’t do it as a pro poker player. How to become a professional poker player? Begin to act as such, a professional who is.