Why blackjack and poker players should always keep cool

by Lucca Mack

When you’re playing a game that you love, it’s natural that passions should run high. It’s even more expected that you’ll feel strong emotions in a high-stakes game such aspoker or blackjack, where large amounts of money could be riding on the outcome. Furthermore, so much of the game is down to luck, and when you hit a run of bad beats, it’s understandable that you should want to express your frustration vocally.

Equally, when you hit a winning streak, it’s easy to get carried away with your success and become a little giddy with happiness. However, letting your emotions gain the upper hand can be bad for your game in more ways than one. Blackjack and poker are social games with unwritten but widely recognized rules of etiquette, and breaking these not only makes you look disrespectful, but it can also make you an objectively worse player.

Good manners

Whether you’re playing with friends at a private home, out at a club, or at the best NJ online casino, you should try to keep your own counsel and not distract other players. This is simply good manners, and you would hope and expect the other players to extend the same consideration to you.

Complaining and bemoaning your bad luck does no good and just makes you look like a poor loser. Everyone has good luck and bad luck – it’s what you do with it that counts. The way that the cards fall is ultimately random, and complaining about this suggests that you don’t understand how the game works.

Stay in control

More seriously, sounding off about a bad beat could be an indication that you’re starting to tilt, and that your game is going to be off from this point forward. The other players may take advantage of this. In poker and blackjack, lack of discipline can be very costly indeed.

Over-celebrating can be equally as annoying as whinging about a loss. After all, if you’ve just had a big blackjack win, it means that someone else, and maybe everyone else at the table, has just lost a sizable amount of money. Gloating and crowing over your victory won’t endear you to anyone, and inevitably the time will come when your luck will change and you’ll be on the losing side instead.

Keep emotions in check

Overall, stay respectful and focus on your game. Keep your emotions under control, not only out of respect for your fellow players and for the game, but also because letting yourself get angry or frustrated can adversely affect your decision-making. In the same way, a lucky streak can make you reckless so that you play badly.

If you think that you might be tilting, take a break. Walk away from the table, get some fresh air and calm down. When you have your emotions under control, you can return to the gameand, hopefully, your luck will have changed. Even if it hasn’t, focus on how you play, not on the results.

Try to treat winning and losing with the same cool acceptance. In poker and blackjack, the old saying that ‘it’s how you play that matters’ is true.

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