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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 – Apr 23 2013
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About the Author
Jared Tendler, MS, LMHC, is the leading expert in the mental game of poker without being a player himself. He coaches over 450 poker players hailing from 40 countries, including several of the top players in the world. His clients include November Niner Jorryt Van Hoof and Max Steinberg, EPT Champion Ben Wilinofsky, and WSOP bracelet winners Justin Oliver, Kristen Bricknell, and Jordan Morgan. He is also the author of two best-selling books, The Mental Game of Poker 1 & 2 and the host of the popular podcast "The Mental Game" which as more than 4 million downloads. Jared earned a master's degree in Counseling Psychology and attained a license as a mental health counselor prior to becoming a mental game coach in 2005. With over nine years of experience coaching people from around the world and in multiple arenas, his straightforward and logic approach has been proven to help people solve their mental game problems and perform at their highest levels. Proving that he practices what he preaches, Jared qualified for the prestigious 2013 US Mid-amateur golf Championship shooting 2-under par 70.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I currently play 3/5 NL.
If you take poker seriously Jared's books will take you from a solid winning player to someone who absolutely CRUSHES the game.
Any semi intelligent person can learn how to value bet top pair for three streets or make good bet folds but developing a strong mental game is hands down what's allowed me to elevate my game to the next level and produce my highest win/rate to date.
My suggestion is to purchase these books, take them seriously and put in the work they require.
You'll be absolutely amazed once you discover how crucial the mental game is to being successful in live poker.
The concepts Jared teaches also apply to other aspects of life such as work and personal relationships.
All around a phenomenal purchase if you have any aspirations of improving as a live poker player.
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.
I am only half way through MPG 2 but I felt compelled to write a review for those thinking about buying it. I am not one for all this fluffy positive thinking type stuff, but Jared gives hard examples and strategies that have been really helpful so far. This isn't some new age power of positive thinking poker book but rather a road map with easy to follow steps in order to help take your mental game to the next level.
The first book, was very helpful in being able to better understand more leaks and problems with the mental game. MPG 2 really takes a huge step forward imo, by giving strategies to maximize A-Game play and ways to better find and be able to stay in "the zone."
Being a professional, and understanding the current poker environment really makes me sensitive to how big even little edges are in today's games. There really is very little that separates the good regs from the weaker ones and it often has to do with who is simply playing their best more often. This book without a doubt has already helped me play better and I am only halfway through it!
I highly recommend this book to anyone who is tired of doing the same old thing of just watching training videos and doing hand reviews and wondering why their game isn't improving. It gives a completely new angle of how to approach poker and I am excited to finish it and implement more of the strategies.