The Psychology of Blackjack: How to Beat Yourself

Blackjack can be stressful

Blackjack can be stressfulBy Tom Roberts

Blackjack is an exciting game played by millions of people worldwide. Many fans have come up with different strategies of how to win at this game. These tend to vary widely, but the ones that have received the biggest audience are card counting and perfect basic blackjack strategy. There are blackjack professionals who swear by these tactics, and for good reason. Evidence is available which agrees with the efficacy of these methods. But there is an element of the game of blackjack that is often overlooked.

Beating the dealer

Too much emphasis has been placed on the rules of blackjack. These state, to win you must beat the dealer. You can do this by getting a natural blackjack or if the dealer busts. You can also win the game if you get closer to 21 than the dealer without going over. So what players usually do is memorize the basic blackjack strategy. This is a probability-based system of telling if you will win depending on the card values. Professional blackjack players take it a step further and learn card counting. Research has shown this to drastically reduce the house edge. It effectively gives you better chances of winning.

Many think the game of blackjack is based on skill. The skills you need to learn usually leave out the most important one. This is learning how to not beat yourself.

Beating yourself

There are a lot of ups and downs when you are playing a game like blackjack. It’s like a soccer final where a team equalizes in the 90th minute, only to concede in the 91st. These roller-coaster highs and lows can affect how you play. There are two stages in a game in which you need to take extra care. One of these is when you are enjoying a good run and it seems everything you are doing is working out. You need to be careful of that euphoria. It can lead you to make poor decisions.

Beating yourself also includes when the chips are down, you are enduring loss after loss, and nothing seems to be working. The way you handle yourself in these circumstances can decide if you go home with earnings or not. But how do you do it and can it be done at all? The short answer is yes, it is possible.

Keep a cool head

A wise man once said you must treat attaining vast sums of money with the same contempt as you would lack. The lesson here is not to hate getting wealthy, but to recognize that it is a fleeting stage and will pass with time. The same is true when you are mastering blackjack. You need to be indifferent to the wins and losses. That is the only way you can succeed. No loss is the end of the world and you are not the first person to win a hand in blackjack. So keeping a cool head is one key to playing like a pro.

If you feel you are not ready, a great place to master self-discipline is through free play games. These are available at online casinos such as www.gamble.xyz. Take your time on these and don’t shy away from familiarizing yourself with the live table options.

Assess your games

You also need to develop a habit of assessing your plays. If you take the time to do this, you will recognize massive benefits in the long run. Mastering yourself is a skill just like card counting. How do you learn card counting? Over time with patience, that’s how. So the same soberness and dedication to the task are required if you are to master yourself. You cannot play blackjack effectively until you do this.

Learn to walk away

Many people take walking away as a sign of giving up, of defeat even. This couldn’t be further from the truth, in life and in blackjack. Some of your greatest battles will be won the day you learn to walk away. Accept that it is not your day and move on. In war, they call it living to fight another day. The game will always be there, but your bankroll might not. So walk away, reassess and come back next time bright-eyed and ready to play.

Learning how to master yourself is just as important as learning to count cards. There is no difference. In any case, all the fancy tactics will not do you any good if you don’t have discipline.

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