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The Mental Game of Poker 2: Proven Strategies for Improving Poker Skill, Increasing Mental Endurance, and Playing in the Zone Consistently Paperback – April 23, 2013
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About the Author
Jared Tendler, M.S., LMHC, was a mental game coach for golfers on the PGA and LPGA tours before he became the leading mental game expert in poker. He now coaches some of the top players in poker, in addition to more than 500 other professionals hailing from 45 countries. Jared's groundbreaking methods have also helped thousands more through his training videos, articles, and forum Q&As. He is also a featured coach for PokerStrategy.com. Jared earned a master's degree in Counseling Psychology from Northeastern University, and became a licensed mental health counselor prior to becoming a mental game coach in 2005.
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Top customer reviews
I bought the kindle version/audiobook combo of both books for a total of under $30. To put this in perspective, look at what Jared Tendler charges for coaching sessions by the hour. You are getting his complete educational framework for the mental game at a fraction of his hourly rate. I say that not at all to disparage the value of his coaching, as when you get to a high enough level of play, coaching is absolutely VITAL to incrementally increasing your performance and keeping your game consistent.
Point being, the content of both books is worth many times the small investment you pay for them.
CONTENT AND APPLICABILITY
I became interested in poker through my interest in trading equities/commodities. I study the game because of the many skill sets required by trading, that are also crucial in poker. These two books excel at strategies in sports psychology, not at all just poker. Are they written for poker players? Yes, but I had no trouble at all translating the strategies and processes in my head into useful mental strategies for trading as well.
Jared, along with his co-authors has put together a unique series in every respect. I have read several "performance psychology" books in the past that simply served as teasers for the author's coaching services. They would start off "This is what this book can do for you", introduce a concept, and right before getting to the actual drill down of the strategy/process, they would end off with "For more information on this strategy and how it applies to your unique situation, please contact the author to inquire about coaching etc.". Infuriating!
These books do NOT do that at all. Look at the table of contents via the "Look Inside" feature for both books. Those concepts and strategies listed are each respectively dissected and broken down when you read the sections in full. You go from the concept/strategy, to the framework, to the application, to the actual grunt work necessary to successfully implement. Many of the concepts are rounded out and demonstrated with anecdotes from actual professionals who successfully implemented the concepts into their play.
The other aspect of these books that I absolutely loved was the fact that neither of them are shy in stating how much work and hours of practice are required to master the mental game, as well as how the game of poker is never really mastered, in that even at the highest levels of play, the top players consistently put in an inhuman amount of time into staying ahead of the curve. There is no "magic bullet" aspect to these books, and that gives me a great deal more comfort in actually applying the strategies. Almost every concept introduced in these books comes along with practice suggestions, and actual strategies to most effectively and efficiently introduce them into your game.
The parts of book 2 that deal with learning/deep practice and how it relates to poker are worth way more than I paid for both books/audiobooks. Jared and his co-authors actually teach strategies in how best to learn poker (Including variations as not everyone learns the same way), which I found to be useful, especially for trading and how to approach the information overload that we all face in learning almost any skill.
In addition, the mental/learning strategies the book introduces are not the type trending practices that will be outdated anytime soon. These strategies, and the depth used to communicate them ensure they will prove to be central elements of the serious player's mental game, should they apply them properly going forward.
I will be spending a great deal more time studying these volumes in detail, working through the strategies, applying them, and refining my trading predominantly. As I ease into the game of poker, I will be using the many worksheets, checklists and processes introduced in these books, without a doubt, as the initial plunge is always the hardest.
I would have paid more than double for the information in these volumes and cannot offer a higher recommendation of them. Trader or poker player, if you work through these volumes and invest the time into the concepts/strategies, there is no question you will develop your game and profit.