Gambling Psychology | Downswings

in money •  16 days ago

Being able to beat the Sports Betting market in the long run goes deeper than just being able to make solid predictions. How someone handles the ups and downs that betting inevitably brings along will have a huge influence on their longer-term earnings. Having been in something of a downswing myself lately it's a good time to write about it and how to deal with these downswings...

Understanding the Numbers

Most people have a very short-term view on Sports Betting and don't really understand the long-term numbers. Keeping personal track of your own record over time with proper bankroll management doing this for at least 10000 bets without starting over can really help to get a grasp of the swings that are involved and what you are expecting to win (or lose). One of the best ways to get a better understanding of the numbers and swings without having to spend years keeping track of your bets is to simulate them. Simply think of an ROI percentage you expect to reach, (If you plan to set it at +5% or higher your are likely being overly optimistic) and run a coin flip simulator at odds that represent that ROI. [Example Expect +3% ROI = Run coin flips @ 2.06 odds] This on its own should give you a pretty good view on the swings that can be expected at some point.

Just randomly doing 1000 coin flips gave the result of 475W-525L which means that if you are sure of a long-term +3% ROI edge you can still be down -2.15% ROI after 1000 bets and it's not even that unlikely. Understanding these numbers really help to make much better sense of downswings and help you through them.

Estimated Profit

I always keep close track of my record and also added an expected profit line in the graph a couple years back. This highly helps during the bad times because it pretty much allows you to zoom out to a bigger timeframe and see everything is still normal. Off course this means you first need to have kept a personal record that actually shows a profit over time.

The graph above is a good example and allows to very much put a quite long downswing of 400+ bets in context. One of the more difficult things about betting is to know if downswings are because of natural variance or simply because the edge has been lost. You really need to be able to look at everything in a very non-bias way in order to tell. One of the reasons why it is so hard to do +5% ROI or more on a large sample (on serious bookmakers that have good limits and don't limit players) is because there always be times when you no longer beat the market and need to step up your game.

Take Care of Your Health

It is very easy to get carried away emotionally during a bad streak and the temptation to go for instant feel-good solutions like junk foods and such often make things worse. This can quickly spiral out of control putting you in a much more emotional state and unable to use your rational part of the brain needed to make the proper decisions.

If you want to beat the betting markets, it's quite important to be Emotionally, mentally and Physically as sharp as possible. These are things where no real talent is needed that everyone just can do. Eat Healthy (Mostly whole food plant based), mostly drinking water, taking the needed supplements, meditation, working out, making sure your personal and financial situation is stable all highly will help when it comes down to making a profit on the betting market and to deal with the big swings it can bring along.

Stick To Your Plan

Having a thought out pre-defined betting plan with proper bankroll management can extremely important when it comes down to dealing with downswings. The natural reaction most of the time is to increase the stakes a bit (chasing losses), but just sticking to your plan and moving down in stakes when needed is the way to go. When you set your priority more to avoid huge losses at any given point instead of trying to win as much as possible, you never really run the risk of going broke during one of the downswings that will eventually hit. Something I wrote in the article I once made on my personal Bankroll Management.

If you are able to do some of the things listed above, it will highly help you deal with any kind of downswing that it thrown at you. like it or not, they will come eventually and will wipe you out without mercy if you are not ready for them. While this all makes the entire betting experience less exciting, it will make a huge positive difference in the long run.

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