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4 Signs You’re Ready to Turn Pro

February 21, 2024
by PokerStars Learn

Playing poker professionally is the dream for thousands of players.

But how do you know when you’re ready or whether it’s a good fit for you?

Here are four signs you might be ready to turn pro.

Consistently making money

It might sound obvious but you’d be surprised how many players get a little too big for their boots after one winning month.

Variance in poker is inevitable and you’ll almost certainly face bad weeks, months, and even years.

But if you’ve been able to prove that you can consistently make money at the stakes you play – whether that’s over one year or five – you’ve passed the first step.

The next thing to look at is whether the average amount you’re able to withdraw from your account is enough for you to live comfortably. That means enough to cover rent/mortgage, bills, cars, you name it.

Do not give up your day job until you’ve found that consistency.

Bankroll is sustainable

Continuing from the first point, you must ensure you have a bankroll big enough to withstand a downswing at the stakes you play before you consider leaving a job behind to play poker professionally.

Perhaps you’ve had one big score and it’s enough for you to play poker forever without needing to deposit again. That’s great, but how much will be left in your account after you’ve cashed out the necessary funds to cover your life in the real world?

Likewise, just because you’ve had a couple of winning months does not mean the success will continue indefinitely. You might have made more than you earned in your job playing poker in recent months, but variance can be cruel in poker and losing months are a near certainty.

Make sure both your bankroll (and brain) can handle such swings.

Your curiosity hasn’t waned

To play the game regularly means you’ve probably fallen in love with poker’s complexity.

But those who find consistent success are often those whose fascination with the game prompts them to study the hardest.

You simply have to study and be curious about poker strategy to become a professional. It’s the only way you’ll be able to keep up with the pack.

The minute your curiosity wanes, it might be time to take a break and do something else.

You’re happy to sacrifice

Are you OK with not making any plans on a Sunday for most weeks of the year?

Are you OK with being glued to your computer screen for hours on end or happy to live out of a suitcase if travelling for live poker?

If not, being a poker pro might not be for you.

It takes sacrifice to make a consistent living from a game as challenging as poker. But if you’re willing to make them, the freedom you get back in return can be well worth it.

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