All you poker fanatics have poker on your mind all the time, even after playing! While that’s commendable for the game and all’s good as long as it’s a winning day! However, an online poker game has it lows too and on days like these, having poker on your mind after playing could result in some lashing on an innocent victim around you!
Be it a good or bad at work for all you regs, a strategy-based skill game like poker can leave you swirling in emotions for hours after. It’s important therefore to have a routine where you are able to take your mind off the game and refresh it for your next!
‘WFH’ or Work from Home is probably a term that’s familiar with professional poker players even prior to the pandemic. Online poker games give players the liberty to play from the comfort of their homes. However, like any other profession, while working from home, it becomes difficult to relax because you are always near your ‘work’, losing track of time and checking for online poker tournaments around the clock. Well it’s time to build a switch off and unwind from your online poker ritual!
Here are a few ways that might help.
Write and Get it Out of Your Head
A session of online poker gaming can be mentally grueling. To take some steam off after your day’s session, it’s a great idea to journal your thoughts. Journaling is simple, grab a pen and notebook and start writing whatever you’re thinking about.
There’s no right or wrong, format or structure. Pour your thoughts out from the hands you played, vent about your bad beats in online poker games, something that distracted you or even observations of your sleep patterns, diets and mood for the day!
The Benefit: Journaling has a cathartic benefit of taking something off your mind and putting it on paper. It stops your brain from swirling around the same thoughts over and over again. Articulating and penning down your emotions makes you feel less anxious and will relieve your mind.
Mentally switching off these days in online poker is a challenge for everyone. To add to it, online poker games are mentally demanding and most players invariably move onto something equally mentally taxing right after session. That’s no way to cut your brain some slack by further indulging in cognitively demanding tasks like poker!
The solution: Simple. To switch off from mentally demanding tasks, you just have to do the opposite! That boils down to something physical (since online poker keeps you mentally engaged) and passive. We don’t need to tell you ways to physically engage yourself now!
Nonetheless, a quick sweat in the gym, a quick sprint or even a sport. Passive activities like listening to music, taking a hot shower, meditating, a massage or even hanging with your friends can alleviate and relieve your brain of mental fatigue caused by relentless pursuit of success in online poker games.
Also Read: The Anatomy of a Poker Bluff
Build Your Own Hobby (BYOH)
An extension of switching your channels by indulging in passive activities certainly has a lot to do with a player’s interest outside of poker. Therefore, it’s important to build your own hobbies and have a set of activities outside of online poker games you enjoy pursuing during your leisure time.
Solving puzzles, exploring board games, learning a new language or a musical instrument are active hobbies that require you to learn something unique and a valuable skill. These are hobbies you could incorporate in your warm-up routine and avoid during your online poker shut down routine.
To unwind and relax and switch off mentally, we suggest you gravitate towards passive hobbies. It could include watching your favourite Netflix show, spending time with loved ones, breathing exercises, strumming an instrument, meditation or any non-mental activity that helps you cool off and disengage from your online poker stretch.
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Reduce Screen Time
According to a Nielsen report, an average adult spends an average of 10 hours a day looking at their screens. The numbers are a lot more for online poker players, especially those MTTing. While watching your favourite Netflix show after a session could be your escape, we do recommend capping your time on it. Since it’s inevitable and our screens have become an integral part of our lives, here are a few tips to create better screen time habit for your off-work hours:
- Design a less tech-centric environment – Since humans are lazy creatures by nature, all you have to do to your screen habit is simply make it harder to access. Use an app that tracks your screen time and set limits so you restrain from looking at your screen.
- Avoid the late-night screen time – Replace your late-night screen time with a healthier habit. Keep your gadgets away and avoid your default action of watching something, instead replace it with a book you’ve been wanting to read.
Humans are social creatures and belonging is a part of our DNA. While no one likes feeling isolated, we all need some alone time to truly recover from the day. Solitude is one of the most powerful tools for disconnecting, recharging and self-introspection, digging deep into our emotions and thoughts.
A few ways you can get a bit of solitude into your after-hours recovery routine for online poker games:
- Call time out for an activity you enjoy doing. Let’s say while you prep and cook dinner for example.
- Spend 20-30 minutes to yourself before you get into bed.
- Step out and grab some fresh air with a walk after dinner.
- Meditate at the beginning of your after-hours routine, to ensure your brain has a complete disconnect from its work mode and a moment of solitude.
Create a Shut-down Routine
Creating a ritual at the end of work/day is important. A set of actions which then go on to form a ritual for you and help take control of your time, no matter how the rest of the day went. These are actions for your brain to begin disengaging right after a long grind.
Tips on a few things you could include in this ritual:
- Putting down your to-do list for the next day.
- Clean up your desktop, shut all tabs and power off!
- Mentally visualize your next day
Considering the mental vigor of a strategy-based mind sport like poker, recovery needs to be an integral part of every poker player’s routine. Take time out to recover both mentally and physically and set yourself up for greater productive days and a more sustainable lifestyle on the felts of online poker Game!