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How You Can Become a Professional Gambler

I get an annoying amount of email from people asking me how to gamble like I used to. The truth is that what I used to do isn't profitable anymore. It was a right time, right place sort of scenario. Although I'm not a professional gambler anymore, I have been spending time studying and improving at poker (I'm a break-even or slightly profitable player), and I have friends who are pros. There are surely several different paths you can take to make a living gambling; this is the one that I'm aware of and is feasible for someone of above average intelligence.

Despite offering a rough guide to making money gambling, I don't necessarily recommend that you do so. I gambled professionally for seven years. During that time I made a lot of money and enjoyed my life. One morning I woke up and all of my money was gone. The story behind that is complicated, but the gist is that "they caught on". The strongest emotion I felt was a sense of relief. Gambling is fun, but it's not "big". It doesn't contribute in a meaningful way or leave you with a body of work.

Most casino games have a house advantage ranging from 2-5%, assuming "perfect play". That means that if you play perfectly, you can expect to lose, on average, about 2-5% of the action you put through a machine. Perfect play for slot machines is simply to bet the maximum amount of coins (the jackpot is skewed heavily in favor of maximum coins). For blackjack you need to memorize what to do for every combination of player hands vs. dealer hands, specific to each set of rules (hit on soft 17, resplitting aces, etc).

Getting Rich, Finance, Poker, Programming and Entrepreneurship

On Ideas in the Making

First, Just finished hearing this amazing podcast about how to get rich by the fantastic guys at tropicalmba, one of the few blogs I really think constantly delivers quality content. The fantastic thing about this podcast is how you can plainly see how powerful the mindset is of the people who get rich. Michael talks about sending snail mail to rich people until he finally got a meeting, selling unboxed macs, repacking them and selling them again, not diversifying and instead focusing (something I've talked a lot about myself). Some of the things they go in depth about other than mindset is extremely powerful, specifically the way power works, how to work around or with money and how to do things with purpose and focus. Its really crazy to hear these people talk about the issues and how they look at the system and how people are stuck in 9 to 5s or sucking up all day.

At the same time though its weird to see form these people's perspectives, cause to some degree, they have already made it. Its hard to relate to them and their concepts of works when they already have a stable base, an audience, and can presumably just continue writing, making podcast, and otherwise just kind of going with the flow and make a steady income. A lot of the work is also paved out for them because they have the right habits and frameworks down. They know how to hire and manage someone relatively easily. They know how to market a product and determine what is relevant. But most importantly, they already have the relationships, connections and networks in place. The vast amount of interdependence and reciprocity that is abundant in their lives makes it so that when they need help, expertise or some other sort of leverage they can presumably find it quickly and cheaply. Its pretty amazing what can get done when you get the right person to make a call for you.

I've been juggling between some new areas, mainly Poker, Finance, and Programming, with some Entrepreneurship or internet Marketing on the side.

I really like Poker and Finance. What I have been doing so far to make money has to do a lot with odds and returns so naturally I find Finance and Poker to be a bigger extension of that. For one, Poker is a vast game, with many variations, and tons of angles. Unfortunately though, online poker is basically impossible to be good at unless one truly grinds it out. For one, a lot of players have specific software and are taking precise, calculated decisions such that it makes the average player significantly better than what you would encounter in real life. Supposedly its getting better, since a bunch of new sites have popped up that are U.S. friendly, but according to tons of sources, ever since Black Friday, online poker has been extremely tough. Regardless I really want to learn poker. A lot of people make money playing it live, its a fun and complex game that really drills in discipline, and it just seems like a good side skill to have. At the moment I'm following Tynan's suggestion, reading winning low limit hold em, and am using a program called Poker Genuis, which is pretty much a better version of the turbo texas hold em Tynan recommends, where you can also play tons of hands an hour.

Next, and possibly the thing I am currently most passionate about at the moment is Finance. Finance is so incredibly deep and varied its crazy. I honestly don't think there is any other field where humans have gone to such extremes to come up with literally every conceivable strategy, not even war. There is all sorts of strategies ranging from developing complex financial models, based of complex algorithms, with simulations to people who just say buy things as they go up and sell them as they go down (trend trading). Its pretty crazy, and everyone seems to have made money doing something. Some argue that Value trading and long-term trading is good, with the use of some technical indicators to dictate when to get in and out and have made substantial returns. some day-trade penny stocks and profit substantially as well. Regardless I don't think its a coincidence that a lot of rich people have gotten rich off stocks, securities, or investing in one way or another. Not only have a lot of people gotten rich off them, but they have stayed rich cause of them. At the same time, I still strongly believe the best investment is your own ideas. It doesn't matter if you want to make a living day-trading or just want to chuck in a small amount of money or maybe you just want to know what the fuss is about, learning some Finance is definitely worth your while. Currently I'm just binge reading tons on books, already finished reading some value-focused books (neatest little guide to stock market investing and Wall street mba) and am gonna change it up by reading some on technical analysis and charting.

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