Psychology is a fascinating thing. I’ve long held the belief that if someone is going to make money through betting on a long term basis, then the most important attribute to possess by far is mental strength.
These past few weeks of the new year have, I’ve found, tested mine. Yet when taking a step back to look to provide some context, there has been a realisation this week that things have really not been too bad. I’ve moaned in these pages, and reading them back anyone would be forgiven for thinking that things have been so bad, that imminent bankruptcy is an inevitability. In reality, there’s been one losing week in six and altogether a profit has been made.
So why the pessimism and navel gazing?
My thoughts are that with a big shift in approach to betting, from online bookmakers to using cash in shops and utilizing the Exchanges, there has been a rude shove out of a comfort zone that has existed for the last few years. I guess it’s a bit like moving house – it takes just a little time to feel truly at home, and the move itself is always stressful and unsettling.
Another factor that has no doubt affected the psychology of the situation is having a lower turnover of bets. Take the Lucky 15s as an example. Previous to Christmas, I was placing roughly 20 each week on average online. I know there are many who place many, many more than that, but it was enough for variance to peak and trough regularly frequently. At least, that’s how it felt to me, with losing runs quickly being forgotten as decent winning slips were landed. Now, I’m averaging far fewer, simply due to logistical challenges being faced at this point (that will change for the better a little later this year, but they haven’t yet). So now, when we go into a drawdown, it is likely to take longer in terms of time (but hopefully not in number of bets) before we come out of it. And psychologically, that is more wearing.
It’s the difference between a high turnover service and a low one. Take a service such as Racing Invest with a large number of bets on most days. They are going to whizz through their peaks and troughs in a way that, say, On The Oche, is never going to do. OTO has a few bets each month. A losing run can last months, but still be suffered over a few number of actual bets.
So that’s where I’m at. Missing out on good returns from two winners on a Double Delight/Hat Trick Heaven bet last week through no fault of my own hasn’t helped my betting mood, but then I guess that’s going to happen from time to time.
Anyway, I’m off on holibobs next week (so no Bet Diary posts). Seeking out some milder weather and a little bit of sun down Portugal way. I’ve got four paperbacks, and will have no laptop. Reading, wine, and food – looking forward to it. 🙂
Best of luck with your betting in the meantime.