Whenever I meet another sports bettor I am always curious to ask them how much time they spend talking to other sports bettors about picks. There seems to be two different schools of thought about this. Some people like to handicap in virtual isolation and like to keep their picks and their philosophies to themselves. Others constantly like to ask friends and other sports bettors about every game they are interested in. So, what is the best approach for sports bettors in this regard? It really depends on you. Whether you want to be mostly a loner or talk about every single game you look at there are some things you want to keep in mind when you are talking to others about sports betting. Here are six such things:
Think technique over picks – There’s that old saying – if you give a man a fish he’ll eat for a day, but if you teach him to fish he’ll never be hungry. You should embrace that same philosophy when thinking about your own betting. If you only talk to your friends or sports betting acquaintances about the next game and who they like in that one then you are only gaining information that is good for that game. If instead you look to learn from them – how they think about games, what techniques they use for handicapping and so on – then you can improve your own handicapping, and what you learn from them can continue to help you improve and handicap effectively.
Evaluate everything you hear – No matter how much someone you talk to knows or how successful they are you still want to evaluate every piece of sports betting advice you get before acting on it. It could be that the person has made a mistake, that they are using assumptions you don’t agree with, or that they aren’t giving you complete information. It’s your money that you will be betting, so it only makes sense that you would want to make sure that you are investing it wisely.
Only talk to people you trust – This one should be pretty obvious ad self-explanatory. If you don’t trust the person you are talking to then it probably doesn’t make much sense to trust their picks or the advice that they are giving you. As an extension, it also wouldn’t make a lot of sense to spend a lot of time talking to people who, in your opinion, doesn’t handicap effectively or who doesn’t have a lot of success with their betting over the long term.
Great for picking up information you may have missed – This is one of the best reasons there are to spend time talking to others about sports handicapping. When you are handicapping games there is a whole lot of information to process. Because of that it can be easy to miss an important piece of information that could have a big effect on the game. For example, perhaps you are planning to bet the over but you have missed a bad weather forecast that will make it much harder for teams to score. Or maybe you have missed an injury to a key defensive player that will significantly impact the effectiveness of the team you were going to bet on. Talking about a game can often help you find things you have missed, and can help you avoid costly mistakes. If talking about a bet leads you to avoid making a bet that you would have made based on incorrect information then it has been very worthwhile – regardless of whether the bet ultimately wins or loses.
Always ask why – Anytime you get any advice from someone ask why they think what they think. What is their reasoning behind a pick? What is their handicapping approach to a particular game? Why do they think that a particular piece of information is important, or why it doesn’t matter? The more you ask why, the more you can understand the process behind the advice, and a better bettor you will become. By asking why you can also more effectively evaluate whether the betting advice is worthwhile and worth following.
Have faith in your opinions – This is the most important thing you will read here. The person you need to be accountable to when you are betting is yourself. It’s your money you are betting, so you need to make the decisions. If you have a pick that you are confident in and you have done the research and handicapping to be comfortable with that pick then it doesn’t make sense to change your bet or avoid a play just because you talk to someone who doesn’t agree with you. Confidence is crucial to successful sports bettors, so you need to have the confidence to have the courage to stick to your own opinions when they feel right.