Poker MIndset Performance
“Take back control of your life and stop screen sucking like an addicted crackhead”
The words hit me like like the worst kind of criticism, the kind you immediately know is true.
“Fuck me.” I thought as I double clicked and closed all open apps on my phone.  Where did my time go?
How can I, Mindset Coach, Meditation freaking teacher… guy who lives in do not disturb mode and needs my girlfriend to come and tap me on the shoulder when she sent me a text message… how did I find myself at the bottom of my 15th instagram post of the day, after checking messages on every conceivable platform and refreshing MMA Junkie 4 times?
Didn’t I have something I wanted to be doing?
Hadn’t I strategically planned my day the night before, detached from my phone hours before bed, set the alarm outside my bedroom, next to my to-do list, meditated, walked the dog while listening to an audio-book, drank my coffee, and given myself just about every conceivable edge for the day?
Yes.  I had done that.  Yet somehow I had also found myself lying down on my bed at 1pm on a weekday, half stretched out over a pillow scrolling Instagram quite literally like a junkie desperate for their next hit of dopamine.
How could this happen?
Because it’s so easy.
It’s so easy because we don’t even realize what’s been going on these past months.
COVID.  Quarantine.  The economy.  Now systemic racism in America, and of course everyone and their mother feeling suddenly compelled to act like an expert on all these topics and offer their thoughts as facts.
To be honest, I’ve largely opted out.  
Questions about mindset for poker, life or business, I’m your guy.  
Need some help in your relationship?  Fire when ready.  
Want to get to know the pretty girl at the end of the bar?  It’s not as hard as you’re making it…  
Deeper questions about meditation, spirituality or the meaning of life?  I’ll take a run at it.  
Why?  Because these are topics I’ve spent a lot of time with.
These are places I have reason to call myself an expert.  All of these areas have been massively important to me at one time or another, so I engrossed myself in learning all sides of these issues.
Not out of some inherent benevolence either.  Mostly because my life sucked without a deep understanding of these topics.
Infectious disease?  Massive unemployment?  Undoing fucking slavery?  
These are not my things, and they’re probably not the things of the people you’re following either.
I opted out, but not as clearly as I thought.  
See what I didn’t account for is how these last months have helped us all grow just a little bit more accustomed to outrage, expectant of worry, and addicted to stress.
We reach for the phone because our body is missing the chaos, we feel bored without it.  

We are growing evermore accustomed to distraction, controversy and glorified gossip.

We don’t think these things are what we signed on for, we think we’re after knowledge and inspiration, but often our actions tell a different story.
For many people, scrolling social media is like swimming through a sea of shit looking for a lighthouse…  
Well here is your lighthouse.
In an effort to help illuminate the ways this storm of events is wiring you for a more distracted and less fulfilling life, and to provide much needed clarity and effective solutions during this time, I’ve decided to start a blog/newsletter.
I don’t promise to do this forever, but for now, once per week, I’m going to be putting my best ideas, inspiration, resources and strategies into a simple email for my followers.  I thought about making this clients only, but for now I’m going to keep it public.  
I don’t know where you are in life, and I don’t need you to become one of my clients.  
What I care about, is that you care about where you put your attention.  This is the root decision of the moment to moment experience of your life.
If you think this is a good place for your attention, welcome.  If not, happy travels.  I’d rather have a small engaged community of people who are actively working to improve themselves that be some public figurehead parroting what I think I’m supposed to say.
“The result of excessive people pleasing is that everyone likes you accept yourself.”
For those curious, this was the Instagram post by Bedros Keuilian that woke me from my stupor. 
I need to stay active on Instagram because it’s essential to my career as a coach.  If I was just playing poker, I would probably uninstall all social media for the next 6 months.  
Another reason I wanted to start this email column for you winking face
That said, all media is but a tool, and it’s how we use it.  The thing is, we all intend to stay in control, not get sucked in, but time and time again we find that we failed.

That’s because the tools are designed to win.  One need only spend a hour on Tiktok to glimpse the future of technology and human attention.  The battle is not going well folks.

How does this happen?  Why does it happen?  What is the ultimate goal of hacking our attention and diverting our focus to the seemingly superficial and unimportant?  
That’s a discussion for another day.  
I promised to be a light of clarity in these times for you, so it’s time to get to some clarity some good damn news for a change grinning face with big eyes
One of my all time favorite meditation apps, Waking Up by Sam Harris, is offering a free month to new members.  Carving out 10-20 minutes in your morning for the daily practice and listening to the theory audios on your walks will add some much needed peace and perspective amidst the current climate of our world.
Check it out here.
 Be sure to listen to “The Power of Regret,” the interview on Habits with James Clear, and “Drugs and the Meaning of Life” if you’re so inclined.
As bad as media would have you believe the state of the world is right now, I happen to know a lot of people across multiple industries having the greatest successes of their life right now.
Where one person sees circumstances which propel them into victimhood and “woe-is-me” lines of thinking, others grasp opportunity by the short hairs and victory from the jaws of defeat.
One such crusher comes to us from my Poker Mastermind group coaching program for Mid-stakes players.
Two months ago in his first group session, Carlos shared with our group the comparison syndrome he was enduring as a poker coach for a major stable, watching students of his have unprecedented success while he endured a career worst break-even stretch.
“Maybe I’m just not good enough.”
“Maybe I don’t have it.”
“I get so angry during my sessions after I bust from my high stakes games.  I just can’t find it within me to care able the tables I have left.”
Carlos was in need of a major mindset shift, and in that vulnerable group call we were able to work through his patterns and fears, reform his perspective, and set him back on the path to success.  Here is Carlos’ graph today:
Poker Mindset Performance Results

He’d been breaking even for over 2 years, while devoting countless hours to poker each week, subsisting off of rake-back and coaching income.  Today Carlos is 90K richer, from multiple scores, and has a renewed outlook on his career.  

The line represents when he joined Poker Mindset Mastery. 😉
Notice it didn’t change in his results until it changed in his mindset.  It’s a trend I see more times than I could count.  It’s hard to win when your mind story is to lose.  When you expect to lose, you can always find a way.  
A marginal call down, an unnecessary bluff, a misplayed hand you can convince yourself is a cooler.  People don’t realize how madly someone attached to their own victimhood will subvert themselves to keep that story alive.
When you re-align yourself with your own success story, your success becomes inevitable.
The way you see life doesn’t just determine what’s possible for you, but what’s probable.
Another client of mine with an inspiring story I wanted to share is that of WPT Champion and perennial high stakes warrior Dietrich Fast.  
Dietrich, like many of us, was feeling the effects of quarantine on his health like many of us.  Did he complain about it, bemoan his bad luck and just give into to the appealing comfort of a sedentary lifestyle?  No!
Dietrich used the lifting of stay at home orders in Vienna to channel all the pent up energy into getting into the best shape of his life at 35 years young.  Check out his results here.
Dietrich has all the same excuses as you or I, it’s just how he chose to react to those thought possibilities that made the difference.  He found the thoughts that got him out the door and into the gym, and put those on replay.
Dietrich Fast Poker Mindset Performance
Sporting a bitB shirt and the best sock game I’ve seen to date.
See, you CAN find inspiration on Instagram.  The problem is how easily you get sucked into meaningless gossip and controversy along the way.
How to audit your social media channels and turn them into a success blueprint in something I teach in my Poker Mindset Mastery course.
Finally, this week we had a very epic Saturday inside Poker Mindset Mastery.  On the final weekend of the Summer Series, not 1 but 2 of my founding members won Summer Series Titles.  
Given how few events a day there are, and how many people are playing MTTs right now, for 2 of the 15 people who began as early members of this community to both win titles (and more than $20,000) is pretty spectacular.
See, not all bad news out there, many people are having their best years ever, and you can too.
This is where the choice comes in.  Will you choose to see the success as others as evidence of what you too can accomplish?  Or will you allow it to trigger jealousy, envy, and feelings of injustice?
Always remember, “What one man can do, another man can do!”
Looking ahead to the next few months, if feels like the poker world is going all-in on this poker boom for as long as it lasts.
No sooner did Poker Stars Summer Series end than Stadium Series was announced.  GG has WSOP, Party Poker has WPT, WPN has OSS, and of course we’re only about 2 months away from WCOOP.
Many people are predicting a severe poker drought post WCOOP.  The world economy (which again, I’m no expert on) may experience a contraction as the result of unemployment, and this may result in a hit to the poker economy.
Truly though, who knows?  People always find a way to support their non-negotiables.  For most people that’s alcohol, coffee and make-up… Seriously. 
For a lot of people it’s probably gambling also, let’s not play make believe about the business that we’re in.  You average lottery ticket customer wasn’t making a sensible EV decision to begin with, they’re probably thinking less rationally when times are tough.  
Either way, now and always, it’s in your best interest to be showing up for your life, taking intelligent purposeful action in alignment with your highest vision for yourself.
Anything less is an investment in your own unhappiness.
There is nothing that feels better than the moment to moment experience of living a life that’s in alignment with your highest vision.  Nothing.
Everyday momentum.  Everyday progress.  Everyday curiosity.  Everyday Education.
Everyday feels like winning.  The variance stops to matter.
If that all sounds good in theory but your need some help implementing in practice, I invite you to fill out an application for Poker Mindset Mastery.
I wanted to share a personal highlight from this week.  I was doing an enrollment call with a new client in my High Stakes Mentorship Program.  Ryan is a 10/20-50/100 NLH player who plays on American sites.  
When I asked what content of mine he had seen, he told me a story of walking through the streets of him hometown at night, listening to my gratitude meditation in his earbuds while looking out at the world that evening and seeing a shift in the way he perceived it.  More love, more gratitude, more energy.
This hit me right where it counts.  It’s easy for me to go through life listening to Sam Harris, Tim Ferris or Eckhart Tolle as I stole around and think nothing of it, but it was a unique experience to think about someone walking through their life listening to me and feeling that same sense of guidance. 
I found this very motivating, and it gave me a bit extra fuel to power through some long work sessions this week and create new stuff for you guys.  Never hold back your gratitude to someone, the world needs more of that.
If you have a story about how I’ve impacted your life, I’d love to hear from you.  Shoot me an email and let me know.  I’ll post the best ones on my Instagram and hopefully we can inspire some people this week to redefine what’s possible for them.
That brings me to my next point.  If you like what we’re doing here with Poker Mindset Mastery, if you’ve been following my work and you think you could help out in some way, tell me what you can do for me!  
This week I’m specifically looking for anyone with multi-platform social media experience, video editing skills, and graphic design. 
That’s it for this week.  Check out Waking Up app, unfollow some people, and make sure you’re signed up for my emails if you don’t want to miss the next HS Update.
Technology is out-pacing us, so as you update your devices and apps be sure to update your own human operating system with your Highest Self too.  The world need you.
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