How to Respond to Bad Luck

At some point, all poker players will probably experience what is called a "bad beat." A bad beat is essentially a form of bad luck: it describes a situation in which a player thinks he has a great hand, but loses the round anyway. Such scenarios are obviously frustrating, but it is important not to play the blame game or let your anger get out of control.

Keep a Cool Head

The best thing you can do after becoming the victim of a bad beat is just shake it off. After all, you can't change the past, and it's important not to let a loss (or a few losses, as the case may be) affect your attitude or ability to play in the future. Take a break from playing to cool off and rejuvenate yourself for the next round. The best way to forget a bad loss is to do something entirely unrelated to poker, which helps clear your head.

Don't Point the Finger

After a streak of bad luck--or even just one bad beat--it can also be tempting to blame a particular player or occurrence. This is largely useless, and will often do nothing but make you and your fellow players feel upset and wronged. Any number of plays, bets, or draws may have contributed to your loss, and often it is a combination of several different factors that adds up to a bad beat.

Take some comfort in the fact that even the best poker players can sometimes find themselves at the wrong end of a bad beat. The best poker players, however, also know how to let an instance of bad luck go.

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