Poker Tips by George: Nicholas Goldberg Tells Us How to Prosper

By George Epstein
October 07, 2022

Nicholas Goldberg, an erudite columnist on the staff of the Los Angeles Times, wrote these words:

“We prosper not through luck or handouts but through hard work, gumption and discipline.”
– Nicholas Goldberg, as per Elliot Fein; Los Angeles Times Editorials; June 27, 2021.

It’s not hard to see how hard work, gumption, and discipline help us to enjoy happier, successful lives. Let’s see how that also applies to the game of poker.

In Life

Hard Work

When you went to school and studied hard, you earned good grades. That got you into college. With hard work, your grades were among the top in your class. You even found time for extra-curricular activities and a part-time job to help with the expenses.


You had the courage and resourcefulness to pursue your goals. Rather than leave everything to chance and just hope you’d win big money playing on a casino online site then be able to retire, you instead went to college and after college, you found a great job that would further your learning experience and earn promotions to more responsible positions. You were determined to move ahead in your chosen career – and so you did.


Self-discipline is the ability to control and force yourself to work hard or behave in a particular way without needing anyone else to tell you. You did your homework each day. You got to work on time. You climbed the ladder.

READ ALSO: Poker Tips by George: Be Cautious Now and Save Yourself from Sorrow Tomorrow 

In principle, these same three personal characteristics lead to success at the poker table.

In Poker

Hard Work
It is not easy to become skilled at all the strategies and tactics needed to win. Reading poker books and magazine articles by experienced winners can help. Attending poker classes does too. But these take time and effort, and the ability to focus on the details. The math of poker can be difficult, and even the shortcuts take concentration and review. An average hand of hold’em may play out in just two minutes – sometimes less. Continuous focus on the game and players is essential. With eight opponents at the table, there is little time to relax.

Hard Work

Image Credit: Forbes


Are you courageous and resourceful enough to out-think your opponents, many of whom have long since developed all the skills to become poker pros? It’s bound to be difficult to overcome their superior skills, but you can be resourceful.


Hopefully, you have the ability to control and motivate yourself and do the smart thing. There are bound to be times when you lose a hand for which you were a big favorite. Even poor players can get lucky. You may get rivered two hands in a row. Even the best players can go on tilt, and that can be very costly. Be determined to exercise self-discipline. Having become highly skilled, you know when it would be wise to muck your hand. Nevertheless, there is a strong temptation to chase along. Chasers are losers!

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George Epstein

After a long and productive career as a leader in the aerospace industry, upon his retirement in the 1990s, George Epstein chose poker as his “second career.” George has been widely recognized for his many significant accomplishments and contributions to our society. These include pioneering and innovations in various materials, testing and manufacturing technologies for […]

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