7 Poker Skills You Can Use in Real Life

By Dumb Little Man

August 27, 2016

poker skills

Poker is an activity that can teach you useful new abilities and skills. It won’t turn you into a superhero, but it can provide you with sharpened skills that can be helpful in the face of ‘dangerous and risky situations’.

1. Odds

poker odds

Mastering the concept of odds and expected value is crucial to success at poker. Ater all, you need to be able to calculate whether the amount in the pot justifies the risk of betting.

Understanding the odds can be handy in other parts of life too. For example, what are the odds of you achieving a promotion you want to apply for? Knowing your statistical chances based on a variety of factors alters your preparation for the role, how you approach your interview, and how you justify the pleasure/disappointment when the role is given.

2. Damage limitation

Being able to restrict losses is something every gambler has to learn if they want to get good at it – and there are plenty of daily life situations where it can be handy too.

Say your girlfriend says to you that she is ‘fine’, in response to a query with that all-too familiar tone that implies the exact opposite. Clearly damage has already been done so being able to pick up on this could be the difference between a brief spat or a month spent sleeping on the sofa.

3. Discipline

Playing poker will teach you about discipline as you need to be able to manage your bankroll to have a minimum of 50 buy-ins at stakes you play. This is so you can cope with losses.

This is the same self-discipline that will get you out of bed when it’s a cold January morning and you don’t feel like hitting the gym.

4. Bluffing

We all know that this is central to poker but there are real-life occasions when knowing how to fib with a straight face can get you out of danger.

One such example would be if you visit friends who have just had a baby and they ask you to comment on his or her appearance. We all know babies look like Alfred Hitchcock, but need to bluff and say ‘beautiful’.

5. Half bluffing

In Texas Hold’em, the half bluff is a situation whereby you bluff but success is not solely dependent on your opponent falling for it. There are real-life situations where it can be really helpful.

Say all of your friends are talking about the Game of Thrones books but you have only seen the television version. Operating the sort of half bluff you would use when playing online poker in the middle of this tricky GoT situation can help you navigate the conversation by letting them think you know all about it – when it fact you only have half the knowledge.

6. Raising the stakes

In poker this means increasing the amount you are betting but upping the ante can be a useful tactic in other parts of life as well.

If you are worried about who your girlfriend is talking to on Facebook, giving her your password will challenge her to show the same trust in you thereby letting you satisfy your curiosity/insecurity.

7. Dealing with failure

dealing with failure

Even the best poker players lose sometimes and have to be able to handle it without chasing their losses and making it worse.

In daily life, this can help you when you get knocked back by the girl you have been eyeing across the bar all night. It will remind you not to keep ordering more drinks and trying again in ever-more drunken fashion.

See Also: Why Temporary Defeat Is Not Permanent Failure

Superheroes are not real, but if you master these skills and apply them in life, few will doubt your superpowers in sticky real-life situations.


Dumb Little Man

At Dumb Little Man, we strive to provide quality content with accuracy for our readers. We bring you the most up-to-date news and our articles are fact-checked before publishing.

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