GG the Cage.....
Well.... The cage didn't go as I had hoped, had planned, BUT went exactly as how I had prepared. I was flown down to Costa Rica to play in the biggest buy in of my life. $5,000 tournament, 2 days with 4 blind levels, and at the end of day 2 you keep whatever you have. I can blame my lack of performance on not getting the cards, not getting the luck, but to be honest, I was unprepared. I was unprepared mentally, physically and even poker wise. On top of that, my anxiety wrecked me all throughout day 1. Honestly though, I think my anxiety was caused by lack of preparation.
I really wanted to put on a good show at the cage. I wanted to compete, perform, and turn heads. I did none of that. I understand sometimes the cards are not in your favor, sometimes variance is not in your favor, but this wasn't the case. The week leading up to the cage the TL crew asked me multiple times " hey you ready for the cage?" " You study for the cage?" "Are you prepared for the cage"..... to all these I responded yes. I responded yes because I was running hot in online cash games, and just assumed that was going to carry over into the biggest game of my life. SUCH a stupid mindset. Running hot for a week does not mean I'm prepared for a massive live game. I didn't put the time into study, into getting my mind right, for fuck sakes I didn't even ask the guys who have been here before about their experience. TWO members have been down at the cage prior, have been through this EXACT tournament, and I didn't pick their brains once..... what an idiot.
Like my preparation mirrored, I was an early day 1 exit. I never once got above starting stack, and quickly watched my stack fade away. The entire time I was RIDDLED with anxiety... and to be honest, last night after I busted that's what I attributed to my lack of success. It was only this morning when I sat and reflected that I realized I didn't give myself the best shot. My anxiety was caused I think by my realization of that REAL quick into the tournament. I didn't rest like I should have the night before, I didn't fuel my body with the food it needed, and I didn't get my mind to a place to compete and succeed. I think anxiety is an easy out. I think behind most anxiety ( my anxiety anyway) it’s caused by the decisions I make. It is caused by not giving myself every edge possible and knowing it.
Not only in poker, but in anything. In anything in my life, a lot of my anxiety comes from not being prepared, and not giving myself the best shot. I could have done this better, that better, I could have BEEN better. Now I'm not striving for perfection, because that is unattainable. BUT I want to strive to be the best me I can be in anything I do. I want to start giving myself the best shot. I want to start ACTUALLY believing in "whatever happens happens". BECAUSE that is such a bullshit statement if you don't put 100% into what you are doing. I can’t not be prepared for the cage and say "whatever happens happens". Fuck that. If I had done EVERYTHING in my power to put myself in the best position to perform, then hell yea. whatever happens, happens and I can live with that. I can live with that because I know I controlled the things I can control. Sometimes the preparation does not give you the results you were looking for, but how can you hang onto the result knowing you did everything in your power to have the result turn out in your favor?
I got up this morning, and have already pumped out 4 hours of study, 2 hours working on my mental game, and 2 hours of playing. I have decided that no more will I put myself in a position to feel like shit because of an outcome. I won't feel like shit because I'm going to control the process. I am going to control the process and accept the outcome. I am going to start being conscious and asking myself if I've found every edge, if I've put the time into whatever I'm doing, and if I gave it 100%. If the answer to any of these questions are no, then how do I expect to be ok with the outcome? I shouldn't be. That's on me... not my anxiety, not any other factor besides not giving myself the best shot. More often than not we are in control of majority of situations. We always have a choice. I am going to choose to start giving 100% into everything I start. From poker, to my relationships, to just being the best me I can be.