Risky Business: Taking Your Gambling Skills into the Real World

It’s been noted before in the history of man that the near universal appeal of gambling from culture to culture and throughout history can be largely attributed to the fact that gambling lies at the very root of existence itself. We take a gamble coming out of the womb into this harsh, cold world, and pretty much everything we do thereafter has some degree of risk in it.

Risk gambling
Betting it all -whether in business, love or anywhere else – can be easier if you use some basic gambling principles. Be careful not to get caught in your own traps.

For those of us who gamble – whether online, on land, or both – risk may become somewhat of a more comfortable experience, and there could even be lessons learned that we can harness to make better decisions in our non-casino-based lives. With this concept in mind, let’s take a very unscientific look at some areas where you can apply specific gambling principles to business, love, or virtually any other situation you may encounter; you might be surprised at how much casino gambling can teach you when it comes to making measured decisions in your everyday life, once you really think about it.

Job One

There’s no insurance when you gamble, which is part of what makes it both exhilarating and terrifying

Perhaps nowhere is as dicey a place to gamble – besides the tables or slots – as the wonderful world of commerce. Look at any of the great men and women of the past 150 years who made massive fortunes and you will see a blueprint for calculated gambles that ranged from huge to downright crazy. The biggest money always comes from the groundbreaking innovations – which also means  they have no track record and no guarantee of success. And let’s face it, plenty of innovations have fallen on their groundbreaking fannies as well.

Of course, most of us aren’t inventors; but we still take risks with every job interview, every work assignment turned in, and every time we ask for a raise. What gambling principles can you apply to these rather common situations, you ask?

Know Your Players

As in gambling, making the right move at the right time is the key to success. Of course, that’s easy to say, but harder to assess in real time. To help you, think of your predicament as a poker table, and your boss or interviewer or co-workers as fellow players at the table.

You meet all kinds at the poker table, and in real life. Know who you’re dealing with before you make a move (Image: AP/Brian Jones)

Who’s the braggart, the quiet grinder, the power player who lives to crush everyone? Knowing the personality types of those who hold your future in their hands can go a long way towards helping you formulate a plan of attack.

If you’re dealing with the braggart, for example, appeal to their ego and suddenly they will be all ears. The quiet grinder will be more about bottom line business, and less about smoke being blown up their derriere. The power player needs to feel that you bow to his or her whims and superiority (whether you actually do or not), so do your best impression of a serf in 1,000 A.D., and you should get off on the right foot.

Putting Your Heart on the Line

Of course, nowhere is gambling more bottom-line nerve-wracking than in matters of the heart, but again, we can put some basic betting principles to use even here.

Love brings no umbrellas, so bet with your eyes open, ready for rain or shine.
Love brings no umbrellas, so bet with your eyes open, ready for rain or shine.

A good poker face never hurt anyone at the tables, and the same concept holds true in love: don’t let your targets know your every thought or what your next move is likely to be. Mystery and confusion are part of love’s unfolding anyway, so you might as well put their inevitable presence to good use, right? Right.

But what about taking real chances, like asking that hot girl out who you think is a little outside your reach, or calling that guy up who you met at a club last week? When should you just go for it and when should you sit back and wait for a better spot – or a softer player – to make your move?

On the one hand, faint heart never won fair maiden; but on the other, we risk rejection and/or making a fool of ourselves. Sometimes the result can be total deer-in-headlights paralysis. And that’s where gambling acumen comes in, because if you do decide to make a move, do it boldly, but not so boldly that it looks suspicious.

Real life - just like casino gambling - brings no net most of the time. Keep your balance, and look straight ahead for the win.
Real life – just like casino gambling – brings no net most of the time. Keep your balance, and look straight ahead for the win.

And once you make your bet – so to speak – don’t back down. No apologies, no caveats, no over-talking about your decision. Place those chips all in and then wait quietly for the comeback. If you win, good for you; if you lose, take it like an experienced player, and remember there is always another hand to try your luck at again down the line.

In Summation

There’s just no getting around the reality that almost every move we make in life involves some risk. At best, we win our heart’s desire, whether it be our dream job, a new home, the love of our life, or that ebay auction item we’ve been pining for. At worst, we keep job hunting, nurse our broken hearts, keep on living in an apartment for awhile longer, or bid on another similar item when it comes up.

The longer you live, the more you realize the game ain’t over till you’re six feet under. So next time you decide to gamble – whatever game happens to be your passion – think about how the moves you make in a casino setting could be applied to your real-life scenarios.

That’s a win-win if we ever heard one. Good luck!