I just got back from my Asian holiday. I had a great time in Thailand eating and drinking too much, and doing a ton of shopping. It also gave me some time to think about where I'm going with the whole poker thing.
My goal has always been to get my game to a standard where I can take a year off work and have a shot at going pro. I've carefully calculated what level and win rate I need to be at to enable this to happen. I've spent the last couple of years studying and playing poker in most of my spare time, working towards this goal. Unfortunately while my game has improved greatly over the last couple of year, so has everyone else's. Over the last 6 months despite a lot of effort on my part my win rate has actually dropped. Most people have realized that to be successful at No Limit Hold'em you need to play aggressively. While the fish haven't disappeared from the game the number of sharks lurking to drain them of their money has grown exponentially.
Doing the sums on going pro next year I've figured out that I would need to 9 table the NL200 games for 30 hours a week to make an acceptable return. While this is easily within my grasp, the prospect of sitting in front of a computer grinding away at 30 hours of poker a week in solitude has become very unappealing to me. A year ago I would have jumped at the chance, but at the moment I just can't find the enthusiasm for it.
Where does this leave me with poker? I can't continue working a full time job and keep grinding away at poker in the evenings if I don't have a set goal. At the same time I have invested a good chunk of my time into poker over the last couple of years and would hate to see that go to waste. My ultimate goal was to be able to make an average living from poker playing about 20 hours a week, and use the rest of the time to explore a few other opportunities and have more free time. To achieve this I would require a good win rate at the NL400 games, and unfortunately I can't see this occurring anytime soon.
On returning to Australia I got offered a work contract up in Fiji for a month, which I have decided to accept. My plan is to play no poker, work hard, and to enjoy the beaches of Fiji. I intend to take a ton of poker books with me and see if I can't figure out some way to take my game to the next level. If I have internet access I will also signup to cardrunners.com and see what I can learn from their pros. If I don't feel confident that I can improve my game and progress up to NL400 before March 2008, then I intend to shift my focus towards playing tournaments in 2008. If for no other reason than to have a change.
This means that this will be my last blog posting for 2007. While I enjoy writing about the game, if I am not playing, then I see very little point in writing a poker blog. I hope that after a month's break I will be ready to take my game and this blog to the next level. I hope everyone has a great Christmas, and I look forward to catching up with all of the goings on in the Poker world from the beginning of January 2008. Thanks for all the support in 2007 and hopefully everyone will stick around for the start of my new improved blog at the beginning of 2008.
Good luck at the tables all.