Sunday, Jul. 20, 2014

Temperament and Betting

For the last 7 years my sole income has been from my football betting. With no other source of income, it certainly does focus the mind. Friends and acquaintencies have often asked what type of life it is? and is it easy? can anyone do it? and can it be taught? My answers to these are, gruelling, definitely not, only those with a certain mindset and in some circumstances.

It is a gruelling job

It is definitely not easy

You need a certain mindset

It can be taught if………..

TemperamentThe last two are what we are going to be looking at today. I am of the opinion that it can be taught if you are of a certain mindset. First though, I should explain why it is a gruelling job and definitely not easy. It is not easy because first of all you have to defeat the bookmakers overround and that in itself is no mean feat.

You have to overcome approximately 8% in the books favour just to get back to a level playing field and then you have to factor in your own return to make all the effort worthwhile. Even if you just require a 12% return, this means you have to outscore the books by a full 20% to make your 12% return. This is definitely not easy. It is gruelling because it is a psychologically demanding occupation. The ups and downs can take a heavy toll and never knowing with any certainty what each day will bring, makes it a draining process. This is where temperament comes in.

So what type of mindset do you need to be successful with your betting? No matter what type of sport you bet on, you are going to have losing runs, this is inevitable and must be fully understood at the onset. Depending what odds you are betting at, will determine the length of your losing runs. How you deal with these losing runs is critical as to whether or not you have the temperament to make a success of your betting.

No-one likes losing runs and if you can’t handle them it would be wise to walk away from betting, it will only bring you pain and certainly no enjoyment. If you are able to understand that fluctuations happen when you are betting and you are able to handle these fluctuations in a level-headed and calm way, then you are on the way to making a success of betting.

You certainly need a sense of balance and equilibrium. Staying in control could definitely be the difference between winning and losing when you are betting. For instance, it is often said a poker player can go on “tilt” when encountering a “bad beat”, or when his Aces get beaten with 7, deuce. If they did go on “tilt”, then in the next hand he could well make bad decisions, that ultimately could put his entire bank at risk. This can happen at football too. Maybe you have got into a losing run and don’t know how to get out of it, so you continue betting without any research, just trying to get back your losses. Chasing losses is never a good thing to do.

Without doubt you need discipline to succeed in your betting. Never bet just for the sake of it and only ever bet when you have the value on your side. You can do this by gathering as many supporting stats as you can for your particular bet. There are plenty of websites out there that will help you with these stats and you can find some of these on the football reseach site here. Also, remember not to make too big a bet in relation to the size of your bank, especially when betting at bigger odds.

You need to set yourself realistic targets. If you are expecting a return of 50% over the long term, then I am afraid you are not going to achieve this with football betting. A return of 10% would be achievable and this should be the aim of anyone who wants to make a living from the game. So don’t set your goals too high, only to fail. Set an achievable target with a lower expectation.

Anyone intent on a betting career should be constantly evolving and adapting to the changing scenarios. In the last decade the biggest change has been the advent of the Exchanges, which have revolutionised the industry. The books are no longer the driving force in betting, it is the Exchanges. You can now act as the book yourself, laying other peoples’ bets and trying on the shoes of a bookmaker, (they are not very comfortable, I can tell you that).

The overall premise of betting has not changed though. It is still the gruelling grind of evaluating opportunities, weighing risk against reward, an ongoing battle against the books, which can only be won through hard work and betting with value on your side and not theirs. This can only be achieved with the correct temperament, through researching, evaluating, recording, searching out the best odds and never taking any success for granted.

You must remember that no single outcome has any bearing on your next bet, you do not become invincible just because you have won the last 10 bets. You have won those bets because you have done all the research, the stats and odds are on your side and have prevailed. You will only continue to succeed by following these overriding principles.