The Pitfalls of Professional Poker


The professional poker player lifestyle might seem glamorous and exciting, but there are a whole truck load of things that can go wrong. Anybody that is following the poker world at all, has to seen at least one story of a former top pro falling from grace.

It’s absolutely natural that when you play with large sums of money and enjoy a lavish lifestyle, you will also start devaluing money. The basic human need to keep what you already had and not regress is what then hammers in the final nail in the coffin of a poker players career (mostly by going in inescapable debt).

But this article is not about the top pros and their mistakes, it’s about the regular online pros that make a good salary playing poker.

What can happen (very easily)

Making 3x the average paycheck of your country might seem like an awesome thing, but you have to think long-term. It’s a very lucrative proposition for most young people at the moment. The problem is that there is a good chance that anyone taking the way down that road will be disappointed at some point and find themselves in a pretty s***y situation.

Think about it… if you are not making enough money to give yourself financial security for a good number of years in the first few years of your career, maybe you should not focus exclusively on poker.

There are at least two things that can go wrong:

Poker is a very dynamic game. It changes over time. There is a chance you will get run over. You might lose your passion, lose the motivation to improve and become a losing player. It’s psychologically a very exhausting profession and it’s hard to recover from that. This is actually probably the main reason why there are some many stories about top pros going bust.

Like previously mentioned, it’s psychologically exhausting. You might get tired of it over time and simply feel that you want to do something else.

What happens next? Well, you find yourself with no work experience, no knowledge about anything else and too little cash reserve. Not a good situation to be in.

What is the point of this article? Well, to encourage players to simultaneously do other things as well. Being a professional poker player is not a bad thing by any means, but you should also build on other options.

Making a majority of your money through a game you love is great! Just don’t forget to build on other aspects of your future life. Finish a university or collage degree in a field you like, get a part time job on a project that interests you, start a business, build on your athletic career, do whatever you like and always have an escape plan.

Like I said at the beginning, this is not an article for top players that make insane amounts of money (they face a bunch of different pitfalls themselves). This article is aimed at players that make a comfortable living and are just enjoying life.

In business, poker and in life, don’t forget to diversify