If the Gambler is your mentor or your lifelong dream consists of mimicking the math-whiz antics of Rain Man, you might not make it that far. However, you can seriously increase your chances of winning when you play at your favorite online casino or bricks-and-mortar establishment. Gambling is a skill, and as with all skills, you can become a wizard if you practice the right techniques. Just don’t go up against Burt Reynolds or play blackjack with Dustin Hoffman and you’ll be fine.
Practice Makes Perfect
To perfect any skill, you must practice. Knitting, speaking a foreign language, competitively eating hot dogs, playing Roulette all involve practice. To practice, play your favorite game with your friends, head to your local casinos, or find a place to play online. The last option is one of the best, especially when you’re first starting out, because playing in the comfort of your home takes away some of the pressure.
Know When to Fold ‘Em
Sucker bets are for suckers. You can’t go chasing the big win just because you’re sure it’s waiting up ahead. If you want to become a successful gambler, you have to know when to stop. Never bet more money than you feel comfortable losing, never bet any of your savings, and never chase a sucker bet with good money. If you’re not having any luck, walk away from the table and stop feeding quarters into the slots.
Never Play When You’re Emotional
Emotional players are losers. That’s not a character assessment, but more a statement of fact. People who play when they’re very angry or very excited make mistakes, and those mistakes cost money. You might think that you play better when you’re fueled by rage, greed, or euphoria, but you’re just being foolhardy.
You need to look for the “zone.” You’ll recognize it when you feel calm, cool, and almost blasé about the game. You know you can afford to lose if that happens and you know you have a winning cap, a moment to walk away and bask in your triumphs. That’s the only time you should play seriously.
Don’t Become a Jack-of-all-Trades
The urge to play every kind of game is understandable, and it’s actually a good idea. However, you want to experiment, not spread yourself too thin. Visit an online casino or a local hotspot and play different games. Discover what brings you the biggest thrill and, most importantly, where your skills lie. If you lose at craps ten times in a row, that’s not your game.
Improve Your Bluff
No matter what game you play, with the possible exception of the slots, bluffing is a gift. It’s a skill you should perfect, which again takes practice. Keeping your emotions cool and your reactions neutral will keep the other players and even the dealers guessing, and that will always work in your favor. And yes, you can even bluff your way through an online game.
Above all, make sure you know how to act graceful and gracious when you lose. Emotions have their place in gambling, but not when you’re sitting at the table.