Monday, September 6, 2010

Life and the Game of Poker

I have never really been fond of playing cards. Other than the convenience of playing them while traveling, I really do not find much to excite me. But I was recently introduced to Poker or Texas Hold’em- thanks to some friends who play it regularly.

I am not fond of gambling, but learning more about the game has made me realize that this game is nothing but what we call real life situation.

Let me just go through and show you how the two are actually analogous.

Everything starts with the seed: You cannot start any project, or be a part of any new venture in life unless you posses the basic requirements for it. This can be money, skill, an idea or simply being the right man or lady. So is true for Poker, you or someone needs to put in the boot amount on the table to start.

Making the best of all you have: Every person is dealt two cards and a maximum of 5 cards open on the table. All you need to do is use any 5 to make the best hand out of them. That is so true for most of us, we are always in a situation which involves things within and outside our control, but we have to make the best out of it.

Internal Conflicts: Best 5 cards to choose from 7, the combination that will be the winning; all are like the conflicts we all have while working with options.

External Factors: On any day, having a pair of Aces in my hand will make me feel a winner; but not in Poker. There are winners above just a higher card. What if someone else has a better hand- may be a full house or a straight sequence? That is exactly what happens in reality- that’s how you may lose the deal which you believe was your best offer.

Managing the odds: Poker has made me realize that the Ace is not the winner always and nor is 2 the lowest card- it is all the way you manage your cards with the cards on the deck. It is much like having the perfect job, perfect partner but not the perfect life, while there might be someone with lesser perfection but a winner feeling more success and satisfaction.

Taking your chances: If you can risk it in Poker, you will definitely evaluate opportunities and risks in life. Every game you just seem to be doing a SWOT over and over again.

Money power works: Yes, no escaping this fact. If you have the money, you can bet on anything just for the sake. If you serious, raise the stakes so high that people cannot match you. If you have the guts- may be just go all in and bleed the rest. I guess I don’t even have to stress on how a reliant company does this to perfection.

Being the Poker face: Something I am still to learn- playing with a straight face and not letting the world guess what you have or intend to do. Letting people live under illusions and waiting for the time you strike with full force. We all do this in real life since at every stage, we are always competing- jobs, clients, partners…. Its endless.

Overall… win or lose- it is up to us to learn the basic and apply it right.