Poker is a game of skill and strategy, and while luck does play a role in your chances of winning any given hand, over time the right mental habits will lead you to win more often than those who don’t. Whether you’re a casual player who likes to play online or an ambitious tournament hopper, playing poker can give you a host of useful mental improvements.
1. Improves your math skills
The game of poker relies on math and calculating probability, so it’s not surprising that playing it regularly will improve your math abilities. Specifically, it will help you become better at working out odds in your head, something that can be very useful in many situations, not just gambling.
2. Teaches you to read people better
Poker teaches players how to interpret body language and pick up on tells, which can be hugely helpful in both your private and professional life. Knowing when someone is stressed, bluffing or happy will give you a huge advantage over other players at the table. You can even use these skills outside the game to read people in other situations, such as sales meetings or networking events.
3. Encourages patience
One of the most important things that poker teaches players is how to be patient. This can be a hard skill to develop, but it’s essential for anyone who wants to succeed at the game. You’ll need to be patient when analyzing your opponents, waiting for good hands and not getting discouraged when you have bad ones.