Saturday morning and you are desperately trying to wake up. The scent of morning coffee is starting to do its work and you are slowly remembering that you should get up to enjoy your favourite Saturday habit. Betting. You are starting with small stakes, mostly in-play and things are going fine. You continue betting with increased confidence as you easily won those last bets. So you raise the stakes and lose a couple of wagers up to the point you realise that you are now losing.
At that point, you’re entering phase two. Trying to get back what you have lost so far only to silently admit that you should have stopped hours before. It does ring a bell from some other nights when you lost a significant portion of your bankroll.
Does any of these sound familiar? Do you have a story of your own to share? We’re sure you do, but this is not what we’re here for. It is time to learn how to avoid losing in betting and how to bounce back from a loss. Understanding sports betting it’s not only searching for winning strategies and looking for the best odds. Learning how to cope with loss and deal with it to your own benefit is one of the most important lessons for bettors.
A frequent question we get is how to deal with losing? In order to deal with it, you have to understand the way our brain works. Because winning or losing in betting doesn’t affect only your income, but sadly it also influences your life in almost every other aspect. If for example, you are constantly losing in betting you will get lower self-esteem, maybe even a sense of apathy for everyday activities, like socializing, flirting and often lose your sleep.
The real danger is not hiding only in your losses. Surprisingly enough winning can influence your mind for the worst. Every time you win your brain is rewarding you by excreting dopamine, one of the main neurotransmitters in the brain. You can think of it as our feel-good hormone that our body releases to reward us every time we accomplish something. One of the main reasons why we love betting is because our brains got hooked on dopamine when we won our first ever bet. Now every time we place a bet, our brain expects us to win and it opens its dopamine receptors to ask for another hit. Over and over again. This is a clear sign of compulsive gambling.
How to stop compulsive gambling you might ask. It’s simple of course and if you feel that you have become addicted then you should seek an experts advice or help. If you feel that you are not then you should train your brain to not anticipate a win from every bet, but accept that winning a bet has the same possibility as losing it.
We’re sure that chemical substance release in our minds sounds dreary enough, so it’s best that we see how can actually combat this. Abstaining from loss chasing is probably the most common tip you will see in every guide. For a clear reason of course. Most of the times you try to chase losses you’ll end up losing more. Your judgement is blurry and your options are limited especially if you are wagering at the end of the day to cover all your losses. Did you lose a bet? Or two or even more? Call it a day and move on. You’ll have your chance on another day. As long as you remember that you have a plan you should stick with it and chasing losses is not a part of this plan.
Before even start betting you should make your staking plan. You should set the amount of money you will set aside for betting. After that, you must decide the stake of each bet. For example, you can say that your normal stake will be 10% of your bankroll and only during special cases – in-play markets for example – you could go up to 20%. That’s it! That’s your plan and you should stick with it till the very end. No matter if you are in the middle of a winning streak or if you have already lost enough and want to break-even. Many punters – unfortunately – make that mistake. Just when they feel they are in a good form they get greedy and arrogant. So they raise the stake. In the long term, they lose. And they lose big. Don’t be that punter.
It gets even worse when you are losing and decide to raise the stake. You may not be greedy or arrogant in that case, but it’s something that might be worse. You are in a panic. And you feel that with one bet you can cover all your losses. Even if it happens one time, you will always lose in the long run.
Let’s say Arsenal are hosting Newcastle at the Emirates. You probably are going to back the Gunners right? Just because they are the Gunners and they are playing at home against an inferior Magpies side. Well, you really shouldn’t at least not with that reasoning. A punter that respects himself, his money and his time will not place a bet by glancing at the team names. What you must always religiously do is conduct your own research. Check for example the current form of the two teams, if they have injuries or banned players if there is an important European match ahead etc. What is also important are the weather conditions and match officials. Generally speaking, before you make any decision make sure you have measured everything that could influence the outcome.
Suppose that you’ve done your homework and now you are absolutely sure about backing the Gunners. Will you do it anyway? On what odds? If for example a home win is priced at 1.25 will that be a fair price to you? Betting at odds like these might seem a safe way or pattern to win. As a matter of fact, though, it’s not and you can take that for granted. It only takes two or three unfortunate results out of ten to eliminate all your hard work and bankroll.
So if you need to make some serious money from betting you have to learn to identify which odds have real value.
You might remember that before two months you have built an accumulator and you lost it for just one leg. Or you might remember an epic win when your bet did come true with a late goal in injury time. That’s good if you want to be the narrator of great Friday night stories to your friends and not a professional bettor.
In case you do want that, then you should keep a detailed record of all your bets. Open an Excel document and create an entry of every bet you place. In that manner, you can always have control of your play and evaluate your betting strategy or pattern. It is important to know what is going on every time so you can make the right decision in bets to come.
By now you must have developed a betting strategy, a winning one. Great for you. You should know though that it is not enough. Betting is evolving at a really fast pace. You have to keep up. Make your play even better. Start reading as many books, blogs, guides, forums as you can. For example, X-Goals is a brand new statistic category that is here to stay in our betting life or learning how to use betting exchanges to maximize your profit.
Controlling yourself is also very important. Losing a bet is a normal thing. And you should deal with it that way. Don’t let your emotions affect your future bets. Stay calm and start thinking about your next move. And not only when you lose, but also when you are on a winning streak. Your goal is to win money, as much as you can. Having five wins in a row doesn’t make you unbeatable. You should keep calm and choose wisely as this is the one and only way to keep winning.
Sometimes you might feel that you are trying everything, and yet nothing seems to work. Your losses have amassed and you need to do something now. If you are still wondering about how to stop gambling urge, the only answer is to stop betting for a while. It could be a day or two, a week or even more. As long as you need to feel ready again, gain your confidence and clear your head. And just when you feel ready again then you can make a clean start. In other words, you need a strategy on how to stop gambling and save money.
At that period you can do a little trick. Without betting, pick one or two matches per day and see if you have guessed them correctly. As you slowly start to improve your predictions you will eventually get back in the game.