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Old 11-20-2007, 02:30 PM
djshawk djshawk is offline
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Default Do downswings get easier?

Each time I hit a downswing I go through the same thoughts and end up starting to play badly. When things are going my way I think I can play, I think I've finally worked out what was going wrong and that a downswing can't happen again, but then it hits and I'm back with all the negative thoughts.

I don't play a load of hands, normally around 20k a month, and that's been since August. I've gone through probably 4 or 5 downswings of 6-8bi but each time it's just so frustrating, seeing all that hard earned just disappear away. Now I'm at 100nl the money actually means something too, I'm -$500 in the last 500 hands and it just plain sucks. It always seems to disappear quickly too, like this time 5bi in 500 hands, is this normal?

Back to my question, does this get easier with time or does it always totally suck? Do you guys even consider -5bi a downswing? Is that just a bad day?

Man I sound like such a whiny [censored], sorry [img]/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] It's just that until you've been through it loads of times you question everything about your game without knowing how much of it is standard.
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Old 11-20-2007, 02:37 PM
SellingtheDrama SellingtheDrama is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

Downswings will always suck, its just that you'll define it differently over time....it used to be losing 1 or 2 buyins sucked, now its 6-8...etc.
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  #3  
Old 11-20-2007, 02:48 PM
van_exel_fan van_exel_fan is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

Downswings happen to all poker players. There is nothing you can do about catching a few coolers but if you realize that you are playing bad you need to get up and go do something good/positive. If it seems like "they" always have it, try changing tables...Put your opponents on a range of hands, narrow it to the best of your abilities and then decide which action is the most +ev.
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2007, 02:59 PM
djshawk djshawk is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

Thanks. To be fair I don't think I played all that badly today, it was just one of those days where every hand you get involved in turns out 2nd best. I was finishing off for the session because I was a bit wound up and flopped a set of aces on my final hand, the frustration made me slowplay them to the turn, which of course gave villian a straight with QJ and I stacked off pretty much knowing I was beaten. This is the kind of bad play I'm talking about when things aren't going right and because things aren't going well the free card is always the card they need. So frustrating but like you said they can't be avoided and just need to get through them.
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  #5  
Old 11-24-2007, 04:52 AM
swingdoc swingdoc is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

Swongs are one thing. They get easier. If it seems like they get worse right after you move up, it can be good to move back down for a while and build a bigger roll before moving back up so you're not so upset about downswings. You also may need to move back down and study a little more if you're struggling at 100nl. Nothing wrong with that, everyone hits levels where their previous play isn't quite cutting it anymore.
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  #6  
Old 11-24-2007, 05:46 AM
Rek Rek is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

The more you play the more you accept it. It still hurts but you know they are going to happen over and over. As long as you avoid tilting and are a winning player you get through these. Frustrating as hell though.

Good luck
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  #7  
Old 11-24-2007, 05:56 AM
Yoshi63 Yoshi63 is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

[ QUOTE ]
I've gone through probably 4 or 5 downswings of 6-8bi but each time it's just so frustrating, seeing all that hard earned just disappear away.

[/ QUOTE ]

As others have mentioned, if you have a good mentality then the threshold for when a downswing bothers you should increase over time. Since it sounds like you're stuck as coping with 6-8bi downswings, maybe it would help to change your mentality a little.

The bolded part was mostly what caught my attention, since many players fall into this line of thinking. You might have a great day of playing, end up many buy-ins, and have a winrate of like 20 BB/100h. Even though you realize you ran well, it's easy to think "Nice, I'm a good player and I won, so I deserved it... I EARNED that money!" But the reality is, you really only earned the 5 BB/100h or whatever your abilities earn you. The extra 15 BB/100h you basically luckboxed by running good. So besides just realizing that variance evens out, try to put the winning days in perspective. "I made $1000 today, but I really only earned $150..."

Hope this helps
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  #8  
Old 11-24-2007, 01:33 PM
djshawk djshawk is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

That's a really good way to think about it.

I think it's most annoying at the moment also because I don't think I've proved myself to be a solid winner yet, so whenever you lose a few hands it makes you doubt yourself. I'm sure that after another 50k hands or whatever this will have less of an affect.

Also important is bankroll, I've got a pretty decent bankroll of just over 30bi now even after dropping 5 this week. My last downswong dropped me to about 22bi so I was kind of looking over my shoulder which didn't help. Hopefully I'll get the roll up to 40-50bi and then these swongs should matter less again.
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  #9  
Old 11-28-2007, 12:32 PM
shutEMdown shutEMdown is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

read up on Buddhism. It has helped my mental state during downswings AND upswings. I find that when I dont read a couple pages of a specific buddhist book a night, I tend to get careless in my game and end up playing too much on tilt whether im running cold or hot.
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  #10  
Old 11-28-2007, 05:50 PM
reddred reddred is offline
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Default Re: Do downswings get easier?

I'm a BIG proponent of being OVER rolled for poker. Downswings lead to tilt....and the biggest factor in tilting is how much the $ hurts when you lose it. The more over-rolled, the less the $ hurts, the less tilt.
GL
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