Sunday, August 31, 2008

Stick's HUGE Milestone

I just hit a hugely meaningful milestone in my poker career. But before I reveal what it is, I must give some background history on how I got to this milestone.

I started playing online poker in August of 2005. I joined Ultimate Bet because a CD ROM with Annie Duke's picture on it came in the box to a poker video game I bought at Target. I think I spent only about 2 days at the play money tables before I was itching to deposit some funds. So I hooked up with Neteller and deposited $50. Then I dove into a 1/2 Limit Hold'em table and doubled up in about 2 hours. I thought "Man! This is easy!!" 3 days later, I busted and deposited another $50 so I could keep earning my deposit bonus. So to make the story short, I kept up the bust/deposit/bust routine for a few months while not having a clue about bankroll management or hand strength even. The only thing that didn't destroy me was the fact that I picked Limit Hold'em to tinker with and not NL. At the time, I thought hands like KTs and A6o were the nuts. And I actually didn't know what a "freeroll" was. I literally had NO CLUE about poker except for survival instincts that would kick in when I realized I was spewing cash. I think I was down as much as $1200 in my first 3-4 months.

So in November 2005, I joined Cardschat after just lurking there for 3 months. I got a little education in poker there, bought PokerTracker, and picked up a couple poker books. Then when I found out that I was going about poker all wrong, I did a complete 180 and started playing tighter than Chelsea Clinton on prom night. I mean ULTRA tight. I just got very afraid of losing more and more. I eventually switched to No-Limit Hold'em, but still was way too tight in my play to make any kind of profit. But I still was reading poker books, studying my PT stats, and learning from the forum. I think I stayed that way for about a year and then did another 180 by starting to play too aggressively. I saw a few players on Cardchat growing and winning and I thought I needed a drastic change in my playing style in order to start making a profit. So the roller coaster began and I would have big runs, both up and down, but never really grew my BR.

I actually started this blog in 2006 and began to eat, sleep, and breathe poker in mid-2007. I finally got a handle on some major tilt issues I had from the beginning of my poker venture and things started to click about 6 months ago. I kept very precise records of my poker funds from the beginning in August 2005 onward and my all-time low was in February 2008 when I was down over $1500 for my entire career. Now that might not seem like a lot to some of my readers, but keep in mind that I played mostly 10NL and 25NL for 3 years. I did play 50 NL for a month or so last year and I have played quite a few $5 SNGs in my time, but micro-cash was my game for the most part. There were times when I felt like a failure since I had pretty much made the decision to make this my career in late 2006, but still couldn't make much profit. But 6 months ago, things started to click and I started feeling like I really knew what I was doing. I would anticipate my luck running out, but my bad runs were short and easily withstood.

So my huge milestone happened a few days ago. I didn't want to write about it right away in case it didn't hold up, but it looks like it will. So the HUGE milestone that I just achieved in my poker career is...


I now am showing a small profit for my entire poker career and it means the world to me! I mean, it seems like a huge weight is off my back. It also means I've made over $1500 in the last 6 months, which includes only a month at 50NL. Plus about $500 of that will be just in August. I think I can credit my success to my switch to 95% of my play being cash games and to having read the book "The Poker Mindset" to help me with my tilt issues.

When I saw my career number change from negative to positive on my BR spreadsheet, I actually thought I was going to cry. People have sold me short my whole life and even in poker, but now I have a confidence boost that makes me feel like I can go up against almost anyone. Now, the whiz kids on Cardschat and anywhere else can BRING IT ON! I'm ready now.


Jurn8 said...

Well done stick im really happy for you buddy hope you continue to run good and rake in the dollars mate

Beth (roundcat) said...

Congrats Stick! That's a major accomplishment and something to really be proud of. It's only up from here. :)

jaymfc - CardsChat said...

you're the man , don't know who ever doubted you , not me :)

Stick said...

Thanks folks! Feels great!

Bombjack said...


NLHE is tough these days; why not try Omaha?

Mortis said...

Congrats! And a very good read! Keep up the great work!

Anonymous said...

Well done Stick I hope you keep heading skywards,
All the best of luck mate

SavagePenguin said...

Congratulations. I remember reaching my break-even point, but even more so, I remember reaching the point where I had all my deposits covered *plus* enough left over to keep playing at my current level. I immediately cashed out the sum of my deposits (only $75). That way I was only playing with won money. It was a good... no a GREAT feeling to be able to tell my friends/family that I was only playing with winnings.
Congratulations! This is a big thing.
Now, I did (and still do) suffer from milestone issues. If I get to a place of comfort, I make subtle changes that hurt my game. I begin to slip, until I reach a negative milestone. Then I put my nose to the grindstone and work my way back. From your book choice, I suppose you're not going to have that problem though.
Good luck, and congratulations.

Anonymous said...

Nice post about the mile stone which Steck achieved......