I’m just back from a lovely trip to Las Vegas to play in some poker tournaments around town during the World Series of Poker events. I carefully budgeted for the buy-ins, and my friend Debby and I used our points from our Harrah’s credit card to completely pay for the hotel, resort fees, taxes, and lots of food, too!
Poker players say the next best thing to playing poker and winning is playing poker and losing. Hah! But you gotta win a few, too, so you can fund your hobby, eh?
We busted out of a couple of tournaments, and then I thought I’d try the Pot-Limit Big O tournament at Orleans (won’t bore you with the details of how to play this – you can google it if you’re curious).
Bingo! Somehow even though I hadn’t played the game at pot-limit (practically no-limit since you can bet everything in the pot), I made the final table of 8 out of 160 players! It was delicious fun, and I cashed $1,467 which completely paid for my trip and then some.
I was reminded of this story that I thought I’d share with you, because it’s a good one for never giving up the ship! Or the chips!
A while back, I played in a poker tournament where we were down to five players at the final table and only four got paid. I was the chip leader and in first place when a new dealer sat down and promptly dealt me three “coolers” or “bad beats” in a row. (That’s where you have the winning hand all the way through until the last card is dealt and someone else gets a better hand at the end.)
In the space of ten minutes, I went from $75,000 in chips to $7,000 in chips. I moaned, “Arghhh!” sadly, but then smiled and said, “Well, that’s poker.”
One of the other players made a motion to pay $100 to the 5th place finisher, which looked like it would be me. They all agreed, and I thanked them for their kindness because I expected to be out on the next hand.
But then there was another dealer change. She dealt me perfect cards and within twenty minutes I was back up to $75,000 chips again! Then I WON THE TOURNAMENT!
One of the regular players I know well took me aside after that and said he watched me get determined to fight after I said, “That’s poker.” He said a lot of players just give up and throw their chips away when bad things happen, but I carefully chose my spots and played with heart to still try and win.
“A chip and a chair” is all it takes is the phrase they use in poker. I’ve learned that lesson well, and have actually won three tournaments after I had lost everything but one single chip. So I know better than to give up when you still have a chance.
No matter what happens there is always another chance for you. “That’s poker” is also “That’s life”. You’ll have ups and downs in both, but nothing is permanent. You’re not a winner just because you’re at the top of the wave, and you’re not a loser because you’re at the bottom.
Winning in life is learning to ride the waves joyously!
Love and blessings,
I’m speaking at LA-CAMFT group of fabulous therapists this Friday morning, June 23rd at the Olympic Collection in West LA. The meeting is from 8:30 am – 11:30 am. Here’s the link with all the details – would love to have you join us! https://lacamft.org/event/june-2017-networking-event/