My regular readers can look at another guide — I’m not talking to them. The seasoned poker player online already knows why they’re playing, and this guide wouldn’t be of interest to them. But if you’re someone that’s truly thinking about striking out on the right foot? It’s definitely time to look into everything you can look into when it comes to the right poker game of your choice.

Look, being a newbie isn’t bad. You’ve probably lurked on a few forums where people trash talk newbies and say all manners of carp about them. The reality is that we’ve all been the newbie once. You will have to get used to the fact that people will try to go for your chips first. As a group, newbies really don’t know enough strategy to survive very well, so they are easy targets. That’s not to say that you’re going to be an easy target. Nope. You just need to make sure that you’re always looking carefully at the table.

Study poker position. This shows you how strong everyone is, and positions determine strength. If you’re doing with someone that’s the dealer, then they get to see everyone’s actions before they take their actions. Isn’t that powerful? Knowing action can determine what the best course of action would be.


Make sure that you count your outs. A lot of people don’t, and it ends up costing them big time. They assume that they have the nut hand, which means that they have the best possible hand…until they’re beaten.

A lot of players will tell you all day long about bingo players. This isn’t something that you need to get worked up about. Simply put, bingo players go all in and an attempt to lock up your chips. They’re teasing you. If I got mad every time I was teased, I’d have one crazy temper!

So where does that leave you? Playing the best poker that you can. That might mean that your poker game’s a little crazy for a little while. That’s perfectly okay. What you need to do here is make sure that you’re not playing such wild poker that you don’t know what you’re doing. You have to concentrate. I write a lot about concentration but the truth is that poker players don’t do it enough. The multi-tabling guys? I don’t even know where to begin on that. You will not see me multi-tabling. I’m a bit old school like that. I like to make sure that my attention is on one table. Sure, you might make sure more money if you were to MT, but at what cost? You could end up missing key information because you’re constantly having to flip back and forth. Yes, I am very aware that you can get software that does all of this for you. But the truth remains: you have to program that software. You have to make sure that you’re in charge of the robot instead of the other way around. You don’t want to rely on too much technology either.

Dip your toe in the water. Play very low stakes poker if you’re going to play for real money. Don’t listen to your brain who tells you that you played 25/50 poker at a casino a few times and won a few hands, so you should be ready for that in the on-line world. You’re going to set yourself up for a lot of disappointment and anger. And plenty of tears — not that I would know. 🙂

Give into the sensation, the thrill, the rush, the joy of playing poker. You don’t have to play poker all of the time, as it helps to have separate hobbies so you don’t get burned out. I’ve written so much about poker that I’m almost ready to retire, but there’s plenty of angels to cover. Plus, I like knowing that I did my own little part to support the next wave.

Poker is an amazing, amazing game. Just when you think that you’ve mastered it…you didn’t. Trust me, I keep trying to tame poker and she keeps going wild. Maybe she’ll stop being testy for a little while and I can sneak away…but why would I want to give up such an amazing game?

Don’t worry — after you play poker for a while and really get into the game, I promise you that you’ll feel exactly the same way.