Saturday, December 27, 2008

2008 in retrospect

It's so easy getting caught up with the daily, weekly, monthly swings. I know you and I have heard it a fucking million times, but all you should be concerned with is the hand...and the results will come in the long term. A year is a good long-ish term, and I really can't be disappointed with how things have gone.

January of 08 saw me move from where I started in the rings at 25nl to 50nl. I still remember my first session, even one of my first hands when I moved up. I was playing full ring at the time, and I distinctly remember playing a hand with AA where I overplayed it a little bit on a Kxx board where someone limp/cold called my 3bet, and we ended up getting it in. I won the hand and his $50 stack against what turned out to be AK for top pair, and I got a taste for what could be some potentially big money to be made in the ring games. I don't think I'm way past my wildest dreams considering where I ended up, but I did pretty damn good, and am pretty proud of myself.

I've made my way from playing 25nl full ring to now playing mostly 200nl 6max with some 400nl mixed in when the games are good, and I've sustained a nice winrate the whole time. I've definitely had some trying times (namely March, where I lost about $200, and October where I lost about $1,500), but overall I've made a fuckload more money than I ever did in the tournies, and my game has progressed at a tremendous rate.

Last few months I've been taking a much more serious approach to playing and studying poker, and hopefully that will yield some nice 2009 results.

Real life has been a bitch. My aunt getting a stroke, my Oma moving in because of it, our whole financial situation being fucked up on top of it's been tough. It's been tough on me, I guess it's hard having to be around all the time to take care of my Oma...

[pic removed]

...ok maybe it hasn't been that bad, but I just yearn for more time to dedicate to poker. To the friends and family who don't understand what I'm doing, it seems to them like I just want to sit on my ass and play games all day. Those who do know me know that I'm trying to set up my future here.

I have no doubt that my current situation is the root of my stress problems and my tilt. I had planned on moving out or traveling this winter, but instead I'm stuck at home taking care of everything, and that means I can't play as much as I'd like. Things are clearing up some, and I expect to play a lot more in the coming year.

I've mentioned I've been getting coached by Alan. One of the things we discussed was his poker career. It seems odd for me to pay him 200/hr to tell me about his trials and tribulations as a player, but it helps tremendously. He talked a bit about his coaching from Jared Tendler. Alan was in a real rut at one point, and without straying too far off topic, Jared told him that basically at that point he wasn't setting his sights high enough. He made something like 300k one year, and decided that 380 or something was enough for the next year, so that was his goal. He was failing miserably, and Jared basically shook him up and said he should be shooting way higher. He didn't have enough motivation. So Alan changed his goal from 380k to 1M. In the end, Alan says, he's failing miserably for his 1M goal, but is crushing his previous 380k goal.

My point is that I need to set some really high sights for next year. I'm not big on monetary goals since that's something I really don't have much control over, but I can control the number of hands I play. I got through almost 275k in 2008. 2009, I'm shooting for 500k which translates to somewhere over 40k hands/month. I'd like to be positive and say I will reach that goal, but I think it's a little out of my reach. The main purpose of setting it so high is to try to get that high. Better to try and fail than never to have tried at all. If I play anywhere over 400k hands, I'll be very happy. 500k is the goal though :)

I'm starting to rant here, so I'll close up with my little condensed review and goals thangs.

2008 overview:

- 275,000 hands
- $25,000 profit
- Went from 25nl FR to 200nl 6max/taking shots at 400nl
- Ongoing battle with tilt, my biggest enemy
- Got coaching from Stosh and Alan of stoxpoker, both of which have helped tremendously

Comparing my big bets vs hands graph with my dollars vs hands graph, you can see why overall it all seems good, but lately it's been tough controlling the tilt. In 'real' terms, it's just swingier. In the terms I should be thinking about, it's been absolutely fine.

Overall, I'm happy with how the year went though. I'm sure I lost like $5-10k in tilt, but that's something I'm working on. And will most probably be dropping a few K trying to fix.

This month was pretty good btw. I ended it on a pretty bad run with pretty bad tilt, but I can't be too disappointed. I cleared 30k hands like 5 days ago and haven't played since due to RL business, but I'm still pretty happy with how it went. Going to start coaching with Alan again in the next week or so.

2009 goals:

- 500,000 hands
- Sticking with the 'possibly out of reach but motivating goals,' $100,000 profit. Bam.
- Continue coaching from Alan, look into coaching from other 1knl+ monsters, get coaching from Jared Tendler
- Beat 600nl by the end of the year
- Go sign up at the boxing gym
- Develop a firm schedule to make sure you reach these goals, including study time away from the tables
- Possibly take a cross-country road trip over the summer
- Enjoy life

GOGOGOGO 5k+/month, 100k/year, midstakes beat-down time guys. I know you'll be up there with me, let's just try to avoid each other on the tables :)


Jay said...

Well done Chuck. I'm sure your success story will continue next year. Hopefully we can gee each other up as I'm certainly concentrating on 6max from now on.

GL dude.

Munchrs said...

Your a sick man chuck!

You deserve evey bit of success you have had this year, best of luck in 09!!!

Icemonkey9 said...

I think one thing you've forgotten to post about regarding your growth in 2008 is your personal maturity and focus. If you look back at the blog in January it seems like getting drunk and occasionally having time for cards while wondering about an electrician's license was the most important things to you.

Now you have made a commitment to taking care of your family and you've made a commitment to a trade of work (poker, albeit a non-conventional one).

I'd like to congratulate you on your success in 2008 and wish you the best of luck and best of skill in 2009. I really like the part about setting your goals high, I want to do that myself.

Thank you for your contributions at CardsChat, you've given back many hours to up-and-comers like myself and I plan on doing the same when the time is appropriate. Again, congratulations on 2008 and may all your cards be live and your flops connect in 2009 :)

gamedemon said...

Chuck, congrats on a great year. I enjoy reading your posts and insights; very helpful to someone like myself that is still learning this game of skill.

Awesome goals for 2009 and good luck achieving them!


Anonymous said...

wtg Chuck.

Nobody deserves the success more than you, with all the work that you've put into it, nevermind the time and effort into helping and sharing with the rest of us.


Anonymous said...

I wish you the best in achieving your goals in the coming year. I have no doubt that you will succeed in all that you put your mind toward.

dakota-xx said...

I really respect the loyalty, dedication and responsiblity you show for your family Taylor.
As for poker the number that popped into my mind for you to make in 2009 is $89,136. While a bit short of your goal - it would still be a nice poker income so let'e hope I am psychic!

lightning36 said...

Hey -- come back at visit us little folks at the CardsChat buy-ins some time.

Best of luck in 2009!

Bombjack said...

Chuck, good luck in reaching your poker profit targets. Just don't lose sight of your other goals. At the end of the day poker is a completely useless activity, so shouldn't be seen as a full time occupation. If you set your hand targets too high there's a danger it will stop being a leisure activity and get in the way of you finding a vocation. You're not going to be doing this for the rest of your life, so think a bit longer term. Play poker in your spare time, set limits, be successful, but don't let it take over your life.