SuperNova Elite Mental Game of Poker

SuperNova Elite Mental Game of Poker - Spin & Go Strategy

Some of you may recognize my name from tables (slobaks on PS), I am one of the few players that managed to get SuperNova Elite status (the highest VIP level on Pokerstars, worth over $100,000) on Pokerstars last year by playing 30$ avg stake. Not many players in the world managed to achieve this feat. In fact, I think I am the only one 🙂

I have played close to 150,000 6max hyper-turbo SNG tournaments (and zero spin and go tournaments) last year, maybe more, I’ve lost count. I played more than 4,000,000 hands, made more than 20,000,000 decisions (TWENTY MILLION!), and spent more than 2,500 hours in front of a computer. To be honest, when I see these numbers I get scared.

Anyway, during that period I had to fight through a lot of mental madness/sadness/depression, whatever you want to call it. I was battling myself for 10 hours per day, every single day. I want to share this with you in case it could be helpful to you and might even encourage a few of you to start chasing SNE, who knows, anything can happen. Or maybe i’ll discourage everyone that ever thought about trying to reach SNE.

One of the biggest impacts that the SuperNova Elite chase had was on my social life. Due to the long hours of grinding, I didn’t have much time for friends or family. However my girlfriend helped me a lot through this time because she was patient with me and she didn’t push me a lot. I also gained some extra weight and was in generally worse health since I didn’t have time for extra activities like going to gym, playing basketball etc. I found that rather than do these healthy things I ate junk food instead.
So one big piece of advice I can offer is that you should arrange your time much better than I did, so that you can work on your social life and overall health more than I did by doing things like eating healthy and getting some regular exercise.

Achieving SNE also requires a lot of mental preparation, which is something I hadn’t really anticipated since I didn’t have any SNE friends to warn me, and this probably ended up being my biggest challenge.

In fact, I remember that on the day I achieved SNE I wrote on my blog, “I HATED EVERY MOMENT OF 6M HYPERS , BUT I SAID DONT QUIT. SUFFER NOW AND LIVE THE REST OF YOUR LIFE AS CHAMP”. That last part was a quote by Muhammed Ali and those words really inspired me. I would repeat this quote to myself each and every day when I woke up and again when I went to sleep. And  it really was suffering, but 1 year of suffering was worth it in the end, trust me .

The madness of chasing SNE with only a $30 average buy-in was real madness indeed; if it were not for some financial problems I had I doubt I would have ever managed to achieve this goal. But for me this hardship was nothing more than extra motivation and the closer I came to reaching SNE, the more motivated I became.

But that’s easy to say when everything is going well on the tables; what do you do when you suddenly hit an unexpected downswing of 1000 buy ins? You heard that right, ONE THOUSAND buy-ins under my expected value! To paint a picture, this is like losing $30,000 instead of being break-even or even winning a little. What do you do then? How do you motivate yourself to play through such a huge downswing?

Well, that’s a good question and my answer is really quite simple – rather than looking back at what has already happened, focus all your attention on looking forward to your goals and dream. Remind yourself how close you are and refuse to allow yourself to quit. Simply remember that if you study hard and keep playing your best game, better results will eventually follow.

But how can you not look back after you hit such a downswing??

That’s another good question with another simple answer – don’t look back and ask why, look ahead and ask why not! I know it’s easier to say than do, but you have to put your goals in front of you and challenge yourself to give 120% effort; because chasing your dreams with only 100% is not enough 🙂

Motivate yourself by reading famous motivational quotes, watching motivational movies, maybe there’s an environment nearby that can motivate you, even music can be a great motivator.

I didn’t know these things when I started chasing my SNE dream, if I had I would have had to think long and hard about whether I was ready for such a challenge. And after reading what I wrote above I feel as if only someone who was a little crazy could achieve this.

But remember, if I can make it, so can you. All of us can make our dreams come true, we just need to remember that chasing a dream is never easy, and that you will most likely need to be prepared to give much more than you think in order to achieve it. Sitting here now I remember being alone in my room crying, suffering, wanting to quit, wanting to disappear, wanting to never fire up another poker ever again. However, if there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that “Winners Never Quit and Quitters Never Win!”

And regardless of anything else, in the end, I WON! I achieved Supernova Elite and didn’t quit for the first time in my life! Now it’s your turn, with the introduction of the Spin & Go games and all the Spin and Go strategy content available, there’s never been a better time to reach for SNE, so what are you waiting for??


  • TREX1278

    Reply Reply June 23, 2015

    Great blog!!!

  • forbet

    Reply Reply July 13, 2015

    A great tip is preparing healthy food to always have ready. pick up some healthy cook books and pick some recipes that appeal to
    you and take some time out from your week and take a proactive role in preparing healthy meals. It goes a long way when you’re grinding a lot.

  • Gino

    Reply Reply July 16, 2015

    I really like it when folks come together and share ideas.
    Great website, stick with it!

  • kenn

    Reply Reply July 21, 2015

    Hello there I am so thrilled I found your blog. Regardless I am here now and would just like to say kudos for a incredible post
    and a all round interesting blog.

  • SpinandGoStrategy

    Reply Reply July 21, 2015

    Thanks everybody, we hope to keep you happy with more blog posts to come 🙂 If you have any subject you would like us to dive in, feel free to contact us.

  • Cerius

    Reply Reply July 23, 2015

    wow, that’s a lot of games. You should play higher so you dont need to work so hard 🙂

  • JustAFish

    Reply Reply July 23, 2015

    Hopefully next year for me! Thanks for sharing.

  • quest bars

    Reply Reply August 26, 2015

    Great post! We will be linking to this great article on our website.
    Keep up the great writing.

  • tom

    Reply Reply September 10, 2015

    Thanks again for the blog post. Fantastic.

  • Jay Dee

    Reply Reply October 1, 2015

    Inspiring, next year I deff wanna chase SNE.

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