When one wishes to engage in self-development, there are many means to do so.
Some people will turn to self-help to seek personal development; others will indulge in life coaching. You might even take up a new hobby, looking not only to develop a fresh skill but also the personal development opportunities that come with moving out of your comfort zone.
If you are looking for a method to improve basic life skills, it might be worth considering playing poker. The card game sometimes has a bad reputation, especially as it’s depicted in pop culture as being played in shady bar rooms by gangsters and wrong ‘uns. However, the reality couldn’t be further from the truth; the modern poker player uses many skills that serve them well in life.
Some of the top poker players globally are also successful business people or work in investment and finance. That’s because the skills needed to be successful at poker can be applied to other areas of your life. It’s not just a money game; there are some life skills it teaches you that cash can’t buy. Don’t believe us? Here are three life skills poker can help you develop.
Sometimes in life, you take knocks. Not everyone can be at the top of their profession, and not all times in your life are rosy and enjoyable. The same goes for poker; resilience is rated as one of the key mental skills needed for playing poker. Each hand delivers a chance to win, for sure, but it is also a chance to lose, and only one person can ever win a hand. Sometimes, you might have a great hand and still lose by being bluffed or through sheer luck. In poker, that’s accepted, but in life, people often take the losses to heart. If you miss out on a job or have a bad date, it can feel like the end of the world, but poker teaches us resilience is an attribute worth having.
Poker is a game of chance and skill, with one never too far away from the other. Which cards are dealt is chance, and how others play their hands is also chance, but you can mitigate risk and give yourself the best grounding to win a hand. How? By calculating poker probability odds, working out from the information you have what your chances of winning a hand are. It’s a skill most modern poker players employ; online players sometimes have six or seven games open and simply play the maths, not the cards. In everyday life, maths skills are crucial to mitigate risk regarding investments, household budgeting, and a host of other applications. Playing poker will make you better at maths.
Emotional intelligence is understanding, using, and managing emotions to communicate effectively and empathise with people. It can also be used to overcome challenges and defuse conflict personally by understanding other people and how you interact with them. It is the most vital of life skills and makes you capable of understanding people’s emotions and how you should react to them. It’s a key skill poker teaches you; reading people, understanding them and reacting accordingly is a big part of the game. How to handle your emotions is also important; you have to ensure you’re not giving anything away when the cards are dealt and to do that successfully, you have to understand how you give yourself away. That means grasping your emotions and adjusting your behaviour accordingly.
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