Not everyone is lucky enough to land their dream job doing something they really enjoy. For the majority of people, the reality is often a repetitive and boring day in an office, a factory, or a leisure venue. This is why it is important to have hobbies and interests that bring pleasure outside of the workday.
The best of Hollywood movies have often portrayed those people who excel at their hobbies, the idea of giving up work and monetizing their passions has huge appeal. From arts and crafts to gardening and dog walking, there are plenty of ways you can turn what you enjoy into a profitable job, but it isn’t always easy or guaranteed.
Gambling on your Future
For those looking for a quick way to make lots of money, becoming a professional gambler can seem like the ideal solution. But before you hand in your notice, there are several important things to consider.
Firstly, while it is definitely possible to make a decent living through gambling, it isn’t as easy as people think. It takes a lot of hard work and careful money management to make a profit, as well as a certain amount of luck. Some games, like poker, are easier to play professionally as these also rely on the skills of the players. You won’t get the same chances playing slots.
How to Make it as a Pro
The first thing you need to do is know your chosen game inside and out. This includes all the terminology, strategies, and winning combinations. You’re not going to get very far if you don’t know the difference between the Royal Flush and High Card Hand in Poker. All gambling games have their own language to talk about different situations within the game, and if you don’t know what that is, you might miss some key information during a game.
Know the difference between betting strategies and gaming strategies, because one is going to help you win and the other most likely won’t. Betting strategies give you an indication of what size bets to make in order to minimise losses, but they don’t take into account any of the actual gameplay. Gaming strategies will help you make decisions which will affect the outcome of your games, for example, in Blackjack there are only three times when doubling down is recommended; when you have 11, a hard nine or 10, or a soft 16, 17, or 18. Any other time and you run the risk of losing too much money as the odds aren’t in your favour.
That’s not to say that managing your bankroll isn’t important. Bet at the wrong time and with the wrong cards, and you could find yourself out of pocket very quickly. In order for a gambling session to be profitable you need to be patient and wait for the right opportunities.
Nail the Maths
Professional poker players spend considerably more time crunching and calculating probability numbers and analysing past performances than they do actually playing games. This is because understanding the probabilities of different outcomes and card combinations is integral to success. If maths isn’t your strong suit, then you’ll find it very difficult to make it as a professional gambler.
Most of the maths involved revolves around probability and calculating the odds of getting the card that you or your opponents need to win. In Texas Hold’em poker there are five communal cards drawn which players can add to the two cards in their hand to make the best poker hand possible. By looking at these cards, players can work out what their opponents need to be holding in order to win, and the chances of them having these cards. Being able to these calculations quickly will help you make informed choices about your gameplay.
How Profitable is Gambling?
It’s easy to see why people think that professional gambling is the way to untold riches – the players we hear about are always the most successful. But there are countless other professional gamblers who aren’t bringing in seven figures a year, dripping in sponsorship deals, or routinely making the final tables at big tournaments. At the bottom end of the scale, gambling could make you about $40,000 a year – not too dissimilar from a decent office job. The difference between the two is that one income is guaranteed and won’t fluctuate on the turn of a card.
Where gambling can become profitable is as a side job. If you’re only using it to make extra money, rather than relying on it for your main income, then losses don’t become such a big deal and all profits contribute to a tidy little bonus.
Becoming a professional gambler can be profitable, but like any other job your performance depends on the time and effort you put into developing your skills and mastering the tasks. It is not an easy route to big money, but instead offers a way for people who already enjoy the games to turn their hobbies into a fun way of earning money.
Gambling games are often best enjoyed as leisure activities rather than being used as a way to make money. Afterall, trying to turn something you enjoy into a business can end up leeching all the fun out of the activity, so it’s often better to keep hobbies and work separate.