Living the Pro Gambling Dream: Knowing when to quit your day job.
The life of a professional gambler sounds so glamorous. We’ve all heard the stories, and they’re all very similar. A math whiz drops out of college, heads to Vegas, and wins millions at the poker tables. Most of today’s top poker pros can say the same. They got their start playing online and/or against college buddies, and now they’re headlining multi-million dollar events from Montreal to Melbourne.
And what about the tales of MIT super-brains, taking the blackjack tables for thousands a night? Yes, these stories are true, but so many pages are skipped in the telling of those tales. Upswings make a great story, but no one wants to hear about the depressing downswings. If you want to emulate these beasts of betting, you need to examine this career path from all angles. Most of all, you need to know…
When it’s Time to Quit Your Day Job
Whether it’s blackjack or Texas Hold’em you excel at, a few good nights on the felt means nothing. Maybe you walked into Ontario’s Fallsview Casino, bought $1,000 chips, and walked away with $5k in your pocket before the sun rose. A night like this can convince anyone they are ready to turn pro, but I assure you, it takes more than a few good nights to give up a steady pay check.
What would you do if you won $5k, $10, even $20k in a day, or a week? I imagine you’d do what most young gambling pros do – buy a fancy new car.
It’s easy to say, “No, no, I’d save that money; invest back into my bankroll; split it up into multiple buy-ins; put some aside for bills.” That’s because deep down, you’re smart, and you know that’s what you should do. But the first time you win an amount of money so large, chances are you won’t do the smart thing. You’ll convince yourself that this is just the first of many lucrative times to come, and that you deserve that fancy new car.
So, you’ll buy it. You’ll drive it around for a bit. Show it off to all your friends, family and neighbors. Then you’ll have a downswing and revert back to the junk cars you used to drive when you’re forced to sell it to pay your bills. Back to square one…
The truth is, only a highly disciplined individual has what it takes to quit their day job and live the pro gambling dream. You need the discipline to avoid impulsive purchases, too-expensive buy-ins, and myriad other temptations of the casino life. You’ll also need an advance bankroll large enough to fund your lifestyle for at least two months.
That two-month budget should include be enough to cover all regular expenses and bills, a full schedule of buy-ins you intend to make, plus extra spending cash because, let’s face it, life is as unpredictable as a well-shuffle deck of cards.