In success circles, there’s been a lot of talk about using a journal to achieve your goals. Most gamblers don’t think about their gambling in the same way that success gurus teach about achieving goals, but is this something that can help you?
The process of journaling is simply writing things down, usually the first thing in the morning. This doesn’t seem like it would be a big help, but many successful people swear by it.
Here’s a list of five ways that using a journal might be able to help you become a better gambler. Something that most winning gamblers do is look for any little thing that can help them. SO what do you have to lose by giving journaling a try?
Get Your Thoughts on Paper
Most real money gamblers are smart. They figure out a way to win while most others are losing, so they usually can process information in a particular way. And many of them do it all in their head.
But there’s a better way to improve the way you think about gambling and improve. I don’t understand exactly why it works, but I know from experience that it helps.
When you write down important things it has a way of cementing the information in your mind. The act of writing is one of the best ways to help you remember.
Set a time each day to write about gambling in a journal. I find it best to do it early in the morning before life starts throwing things at you. But you can use any time that works best for you.
Don’t stress about what you’re going to write. Simply write anything that comes to mind. It helps me to look at the journaling experience as a way to empty my mind. I get everything that I’m thinking about down on paper so I know that I can go back and review it later.
This takes the pressure off of trying to remember everything. This alone is beneficial to me, and I’m betting that it’s going to be beneficial to you too.
You also don’t have to spend a lot of time journaling every day. Start with 15 minutes and see how it goes. Some people journal 15 minutes every day and others do 30 minutes or more.
This is a tool to help you, so you get to find out what works best for you. Even as little as five minutes can help you clear your mind and improve your gambling results.
Accurately Track Your Casino Results
The most important thing a journal can be used by gamblers to do is track your results. It’s difficult to figure out where you need to work on improving if you don’t know how you’re doing.
Make a note in your journal before you start a gambling session, and then as soon as you’re done gambling write down how you did.
If you made gambling mistakes you need to write them down. When you review your journal later you can see if you’re still making the same mistakes or if you’ve been able to correct them.
You need to track your results if you want to improve your gambling, so you might as well use a journal instead of keeping two or more documents.
I mentioned reviewing your journal in the last section, and this is another reason why journaling is important for gamblers. As a historical record, your journal will help you for as long as you use it.
After you build your journaling habit, take some time at least once a week to review past journal entries.
I like to read my morning journal entry later in the day to see if it brings any other thoughts to the surface. But I also try to look at some older journal entries at least once a week to see if there’s anything important that I’ve forgotten.
Remember that the purpose of using a journal is to help you become a better gambler. Just like your journal, your gambling career is a growing concern. The more you grow, the better your chances of becoming a better gambler.
Identify Casino Strategies That Need Improvement
Most of the time I send gambling is at the poker table. Because there are so many different decisions you have to make when you play poker for real money, there’s rarely a playing session where I didn’t make some mistakes.
I try to remember every mistake I make and record it in my journal. If I want to improve from my mistakes I have to remember making them. This makes my journal a valuable tool because it shows me areas where I need to make improvements.
A journal is even useful for gamblers playing other games like slots, video poker, craps, and roulette. The problem with most of these games is that you’re never going to be able to overcome the casino edge. This doesn’t mean that you can’t take steps to improve your results, and a journal can help you see what these steps need to be.
But using a journal is going to help you more if you’re already doing a gambling activity that gives you a realistic opportunity to win.
If you’re new to gambling you probably want to try many different gambling activities. As you try different gambling activities and use your journal to track your results you can start seeing which activities give you the best chance to win.
Just don’t ignore short term variance. Even when you’re playing a game that you can’t beat in the long run you can win sometimes. Sometimes slots players win, but overall the casinos make a ton of money from slots players.
Improve Your Gambling Focus
Focus is something that most gamblers don’t think about. But when you’re gambling you need to stay focused at all times. When you start losing focus it usually leads to mistakes. And gambling mistakes usually lead to more losses.
But using a journal is another good way to help with your gambling focus. When you identify mistakes that you’re making in your journal it tells you when and where you need to be aware of your focus the next time you’re gambling.
For example, if I see in my journal that I start making more mistakes after I play poker for four hours, I need to either take a break before I play for four hours or learn how to maintain focus beyond four hours.
The same thing can happen to blackjack players; particularly blackjack card counters. See how long you can keep an accurate count and make the correct strategy plays before you start making mistakes.
Even if a mistake doesn’t cost you in a particular situation, the way that blackjack works is that every mistake you make costs you money overall. This is true for all types of gambling activities, not just blackjack and poker.
Your ability to have good gambling discipline is something that you can’t afford to ignore. Most gamblers don’t think about focus, and most gamblers lose. Use your journal to help you stay focused and to identify when you’re most likely to lose focus.
The simple process of getting your thoughts down on paper can be a big help. Even if you don’t see how it can help you should give it an honest try.
Specifically for gamblers, using a journal helps you track your results and identify your gambling areas that need to be improved. You can also find value using your journals as a historical document. Look back at your past journals to see how far you’ve come in your gambling journey.
Using a journal can also help you improve your focus. When you lose focus gambling you’re more likely to lose.