Mastering The Fundamentals: Mental Game Strategy

Learn all about how the mental game of poker is as important as your technical knowledge of the game! Tilt comes in all forms and it is important to recognize whether you are prone to being affected by tilt and learning techniques to control it!

In this poker webinar Jonathan Little teaches you lots of tips and tricks on how to overcome tilt and how to always bring your best game to the poker tables!

Tilt is a poker term for a state of mental or emotional confusion or frustration in which a player adopts a suboptimal strategy, usually resulting in the player becoming overly aggressive. All sorts of things can cause tilt and you can tilt in all sorts of ways.

You should stop worrying about things that are out of your control, which is pretty much everything! Even if you play perfectly, you will lose sometimes. Make sure that you are always focusing on the process and not the outcome.

If you are prone to tilting then you need to figure out what triggers you and figure out why. With some honest assessment, you will realize it is probably quite silly. Don’t do silly things! When you feel yourself tilting then you should take a break or perhaps quit your current session. However, this is just a temporary bandage.

In order to win at poker you have to; find a game that you can beat, play it a lot & keep a proper bankroll!

Poker is one long session. Your goal should be to make as much money as possible in each hand that you are dealt. You should not be concerned with winning each session because the start and end of each session are just artifical markers. For this reason you should not worry about ‘getting even’.

It is important that you put in volume at the tables when you are a winning player in that game. You make some amount per hand, so be sure to be dealt into lots of hands! When you do not play, you do not extract equity! Variance does exist, volume cures variance!

You will win as much as possible by exploiting your opponent’s mistakes. If you are not present then you will not see all the mistakes that they are making! Find ways that work for you to routinely re-center yourself. Make sure that you are focusing on abnormal things that your opponents do. Take notes about these mistakes and the adjustments that you are going to make when you are playing against them in a poker hand.

Watch this poker webinar to help make sure that you are always bringing your A game to the poker table!

0:00 – Mastering The Fundamentals: Mental Game Strategy
0:09 – What Is Tilt?
1:08 – Always Focus On What You Can Control
2:08 – How To Deal With Tilt
7:29 – How To Win At Poker
8:07 – Remember This Key Fact!
9:18 – You Must Put In Volume
13:37 – Pay Attention At The Tables
18:29 – Some General Poker Life Advice!

On this Poker Coaching channel we cover a weekly poker topic to help improve your poker strategy!

In order to take your poker game to the next level it is vitally important you learn all the nuances of the game.

Do you know what ranges of poker hands you should be playing from each position? When should you 3-bet, call or fold? When is the right time to make a hero call or a huge bluff? Do you know how to play preflop, flop, turn & river effectively and how should your poker strategy change depending on the street? What difference does it make if you are playing multi-way vs heads-up?

#pokerstrategy #mentalgame #pokeradvice


  1. How often do YOU tilt at the poker tables? ☹

    A) Never
    B) Sometimes
    C) Everytime I lose a hand!

  2. The most important aspect of the game that always goes overlooked! Congrats on talking about this!!

  3. I get tilted if I don’t win a hand in the first ten minutes of sitting down. I need to work on that.

  4. This is a super important. One of my weaknesses. I don’t typically go on tilt but I’ll show visible frustration and that’s not great while playing live.

  5. 1 – it’s MUCH easier to not tilt at something like counting cards in blackjack because there is a specific best strategy that can be identified for each situation. It’s much more difficult to definitively identify the best play in a poker hand because of the unknowns (mostly because opponents react/play unpredictably). So it’s harder to know when you’re playing well and losing vs playing poorly and losing. This is the hardest part of not being results-oriented during poker sessions.
    2 – for me personally, I tend to play tighter when I start to feel like I’m tilting because I KNOW I’m going to regret playing a hand poorly later (even if I get lucky and win the hand)

  6. I give myself a really hard time if I play badly or make a bad call. When others get lucky with their draws against me I'm usually fine.

  7. Next time I’m explaining to someone why Jonathan Little is someone I look up to, I’ll just point them to this video. I believe him when he says he wants the best for the viewers, it shows when he makes videos like this

  8. this wasn't much about the game of poker itself but one of your best videos coach; for life and poker.

  9. I was at the casino for the first time the other day. I was playing very good and was up 500bb. I started getting a headache and realized that I didn't eat dinner. I took a break to eat. I came back and the table was broken. I got my chips and sat at another table, (which ended up having much better players). The first hand I made an blunder by misreading the board. I was getting tired after I ate. I got down to 250bb and the table broke again. Then I quit. This was a big lesson for me. Time flys by so fast on the table, especially when super focused. Next time, I will make sure that I'm taken care of. And if whatever reason, I am tired, I will quit.

  10. Great video Jon! Not only great poker advice, but also life advice.

  11. i get tilted when players or dealers dont know what they are doing and the game slows down for no reason. I played a session where the dealer is completely new and the flow of the game just becomes really bad because she doesnt know the basics stuff and always misread hands. Or when players dont know wt they are doing and messing up the flow of the game like betting out of turn, arguing string bets, wrong raising size etc. I really dont know what can I do in these situations.

  12. I use tilt to exploit people trying to exploit me while I'm on 'tilt'. I do tilt but usually until the next playable hand.

  13. "One long session" – I agree in general, but not when stacks get very deep. Even if you are good at deep-stacked play, you are playing for a larger percentage of your bankroll for those hands where the effective stack is bigger. This makes the variance higher for those hands. For example, if you have 30 BI for 1/3, and go up by 4 BIs, you now have 14% of your bankroll on the table, rather than 3%. Playing with 14% of your bankroll would not be recommended in the bankroll bible. So I think that standing up when you're very deep (effective) is OK, especially towards the end of a scheduled session.

  14. Too much caffeine and not sleeping well go hand in hand for me. I doubt I will cut the caffeine 100% anytime soon, but no caffeine after dinner has helped. It's much more difficult for me to get titled if I'm well rested and relaxed compared to when I am irritable from a lack of sleep!

  15. Had a dealer at red rock deal the river before my opponent would act
    Would of hit straight flush to the queen
    Cost me the pot and a high hand jackpot of 1100
    Folded and left

  16. I like to bring headphones specifically to help calm myself if tilted

  17. On a forced break after the APL Million in Canberra Hospital…great chance to step back & study. I miss the tables already. Cheers all.
    PS: Tilt for me is depression, total loss of interest. After a walk & an orbit or so of being 'TAF', my interest picks back up nearly always.

  18. Solid advice for life in-general.
    Don't let stupid things get to you. Be aware of when you are upset and prone to making poor choices. You can't win them all, but you won't win any if you don't play the game. Long term succes should be the goal, don't focus on minor failures. Learn from them. Getting whooped is how you get better. Never stop learning. Good Enough is the enemy of Great.

  19. That is one my f@cking flaws and I hate everyone in the table esp myself! Esp if some stupid player got lucky with a freaking garbage hands!

  20. B) also, what if you don’t understand the strategy or even your own strategy? I know the science aspect of knowing which hands to fold based on playing, but how do you get better and learning the strategy and art of poker? I understand bluffing, raising 2-3x the pot, and the basics but I don’t understand positions and how it correlates to playing for which hands to play

  21. I love to hear your thoughts and common sense on the game of life, as it relates to the game of poker. Generally, I do all the intangibles well, but I play poker to socialize mainly. I do keep track of the wins, and losses. And my 3 main diversions are taking walks, listening to music, and cooking.

  22. 13:00 If a cash player isn't trying to "lock up a win" he will naturally see this bigger-wins-than-losses effect. To really simplify, think if your session was 2 60/40 flips for your stack. 36% you win 3 buyins. 24% you lose then rebuy and win to break even. 24% you win then lose -1 buyin net and 16% you lose 2 buyins. More losses than wins. But you want those 60/40s to be for 2 buyins when possible or you are giving up equity to protect your session win.

    This was my favorite part of the video.

  23. Absolutely fantastic video seminar, Jonathan! Been in a tough 3 month grind, and your advice has been a ray of light. Keep 'em coming! 👍

  24. When I’m on tilt, I make desperation calls. Anybody else?

    Edit: what triggers me, is bad players chasing every draw and hitting back to back. Or hitting their 3 outters multiple times.

  25. I need a substance to play the games I play. Otherwise- completely unbearable

  26. Visualisations and Breathwork, those are covered in your tournament master class, which I believe every serious poker player should invest in.

  27. Great advice.

    I feel like I should be an amazing poker player. Obsessive nerdy mathematician, gamer, speed cuber, puzzle master. In good shape, always sleep 8-9 hrs, rarely drink, never party, only ever use safe psychedelics which I'm using less and less lately, constantly learning and have been studying for 2 years now.

    Started with your content. Been a micro grinder at +7bb winrate about 150k+ hands.

    Left a miserable job in sales to work in a national park at a super chill job where I can study poker half the time. Never been more at peace, have almost $10k saved and starting to move up with 25-50nl. Might move to the city this winter in Canada and try my skills at a casino for live poker. Just happen to live in the poker capital of Canada lol I've never bought a lotto ticket ever, hate sports and other forms of gambling. Rarely get tilted, always watching every player, tagging and noting every chance I get, not missing a single fish.

    Still feels like I'm missing something, wish I had friends to play with and learn from or take advice from as well.

  28. My tilt is from people taking too long with a decision, especially preflop. You should know Your preflop range and this should be quick. I feel they're doing it intentionally to annoy other players

  29. Hello sir. I have been playing cards for a lifetime but am taking Holdem seriously for the first time. Every time I watch one of your videos, I immediately play better. This is only universally true if your videos, no other poker YouTuber has this effect. Thanks for all the fantastic advice

  30. My tilt cure is closing my eyes and doing some deep breathing to recenter my thoughts and take inventory of my mental state, once I am aware of what has caused my tilt I can re-evaluate where I stand and move forward accordingly. I learned in 1995 that tilt is very detrimental to my game and it's not worth the repercussions it has on my remaining bankroll. When someone is playing really bad but they are a super luckbox it's hard to not get frustrated with them.

  31. Meditation before a planned poker session is my recommendation, also avoid energy drinks they create a wave effect with your focus and energy at the table.

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