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The Present

As It Is in Poker, So It Is in Life

Smarts Don’t Guarantee Success. Only a Hunger to Win Can.

Take it from a 19-year-old college graduate. Brandon Adams says that most poker players, like financial traders, have sharply analytical minds. But even the most rigorous attention will turn soft over time unless you find ways to stay hungry for success.

Why Weakness Is Good: It Allows You to Build a Solid Foundation

Being a novice in a field of experts is a moment to cherish, not fear, says Adams. Trying to start off strong and impress your more experienced peers only robs you of the chance to start building your game at the ground level. And once you have a strong foundation, the sky’s the limit.

Sacrifice Now to Get More Later: Poker’s Biggest Challenge (and Life’s)

No poker player can play the game using a consistent strategy forever. Getting complacent gives others the edge over you. Making small sacrifices to build a more variable long-term approach is essential to having success in the poker arena, and beyond.

Use Your Emotions to Evaluate Risk. Don’t Be Too Rational.

On Wall Street and in Vegas, Adams watched his most steely and calculating colleagues lose all their earnings in a single moment. Why? They had become dangerously numb to risk and believed that their intelligence would protect them from failure. But they were wrong: emotion is what keeps us solvent.

Working on Wall Street Is More Like Gambling Than You Think

In poker, there’s a winner and a loser. On Wall Street, it’s often the same. Unlike traditional economic activities where both the purchaser and the seller gain something in the transaction, many finance markets are just as risky as sitting at a poker table.


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