The 5 mistakes that make you lose betting: what are they and how to avoid losing bets
I was with my friend Johnny having a drink the other day and he told me: “I have been following the best betting strategies for a long time, and even though the systems are winners I always end up losing. What’s wrong?” If you feel identified with Johnny do not worry, you are in the group of 99% of gamblers who only manage to lose, so at least, you are not a weirdo. But the best of all is that you are in the right place to discover which are the most common failures that you should avoid. Only with knowledge, discipline and patience you can enter the exclusive club of 1% of winning gamblers and in this article we will see how. Avoid losing bets, let’s go there!
That day with Johnny at the bar we had a very fruitful conversation. We were exchanging points of view and opinions and I want to think that it helped him to avoid losing bets. In a few months I will check to see how it has been during this time, and I hope he can give me good news!
Error number 1: not making a proper bank management
The first thing I asked Johnny is to tell me about his bank management. Improper management can lead to ruin quickly. Surprisingly for me he said: “Bank management? Mmm … I do not know, I for example put € 50 and then I make bets of € 10 each, very often I run out of bank and I have to be constantly depositing.”
Great mistake, I said. By doing so it is very possible that you are leaving picks without betting because you do not have available bank, which could be winners. What is worse is that every time you charge your bank, apart from wasting time, you are probably charging commissions. What we must pursue is to have a stable bank that allows us to comfortably cross both bad and good times, because the bad streaks will come, you can be sure.
This topic is certainly something very personal, many factors intervene here such as how much risk you are willing to take, and this in turn has to do with how much money you can afford to lose and also how much money you can mentally assume to lose without being demoralized and abandon. Psychology plays a very important role here, because we always tend to remember bad experiences but we forget good ones soon.
Evaluate the risk of your strategies
To help with this, I continued, there is a really important thing in the strategies generated with our strategy analysis tool Betamin Builder which is the maximum historical Draw Down (maxDD). This data tells us what is the worst streak that the strategy has had in all its history analyzed. In Betamin Builder it is possible to find strategies with a fairly low maxDD (which does not reach -20 units), which makes them affordable for novice bettors.
Let’s give an example with fictitious numbers but very close to reality, very easy to understand: I have € 100 of bank, and if I see that my bank goes below € 75 I get very nervous. Put it another way, if with € 100 I lose in a rough patch over € 25 surely I can not stand it. Let’s suppose that in each bet I put 1 € of stake. In that case my recommendation is to follow a strategy whose maxDD is less than 25 units. or better yet, use the Betamin Builder aggregator to calculate the maxDD of all the strategies together that you are following. The ideal would be to follow strategies whose maxDD reaches -20 units in this example, to be prudent if it were the case that the historical maxDD would be exceeded in the future. If in addition to strategies of the Betamin Builder tool you are following a tipster, demand this information, and if he doesn’t give it, be distrust.
Bigger profitability implies bigger risk
When I told Johnny about this, he asked me: “So what’s the point of having strategies with big maximum Draw Downs? Who can be interested in them?” Very easy, I replied. In general, a bigger maxDD is linked to bigger profitability (expressed in the yield of the strategy). The most experienced bettors usually seek big returns on the money invested, carefully managing the risk and managing their bank correctly. Of course to support a large maxDD not only have to know how to manage the bank properly, but also have to be very well prepared psychologically.
Beware of “magic” methods
Johnny did not seem very convinced, he replied: “Well, as I read there is an infallible bank management method called martingale, it’s about doubling your bet while you lose until you win and then you recover the investment and you end up winning.” Shocked, I told him, “Wrong, you’ll only get ruined!” Let’s see it with an example: imagine odds close to 2, which correspond to a 50% probability, that is, the well known heads or tails. 1 € bets to head and you lose, then 2 € and you lose, then 4 € and you lose, and so you continue with € 8, € 16, € 32, € 64, € 128, € 256, € 512 … Well!!! .. ., starting with just € 1, when you’ve lost 10 times in a row you have to bet no less than € 512 !!!
I ask you, first, can you afford it (if you lose again, the next bet would be € 1024)? Second, does your betting house allow unlimited stake? And last but not least, do you think it is rare or difficult to lose 10 bets in a row (with odds close to 2 or bigger)? I assure you that no, not at all, in fact it is much more common than we could at first think, and it is only a matter of time that it happens. This way you’re not going to avoid losing bets!
Watch for hiking through the wilderness
In fact, and this is important, when you flip a coin, the coin itself does not remember what came out in the previous roll, and the same result could continue to come out indefinitely. To believe otherwise is known as “The gambler’s fallacy”. In this consist the streaks, which can be more or less long and good or bad, and the streaks are always going to be there, when they are bad they demoralize you and when they are good you will think that you have found the Holy Grail; Neither one thing nor the other, we must be cautious and control these emotions.
Therefore, in conclusion, plan well and manage your bank correctly based on the risk associated with the strategies you are following and what you can afford to lose materially and mentally. Use for it as a fundamental data the maxDD of the strategies you follow and escape from “magic formulas” such as martingale and the like. A correct bank management will allow you to recover from the bad streaks and take advantage of the good ones!
Practical recommendation: a very common practical case applicable to the vast majority of bettors is to start with a bank of 100 units and bet 1 unit on each bet, and as the bank increases or decreases, do the same with the stake of each bet, so that always corresponds to 1% of your bank. Avoid losing bets with a correct bank management!
Error number 2: impatience, inconstancy or discontinuity
Johnny continued arguing: “I want fast results, not just avoid losing bets. If a strategy does not work for me on the first weekend, or if after several weeks it suddenly stops functioning, I leave it and take another one that works well, I do not want to be losing foolishly for following a bad strategy. However, I always lose while strategies win, I do not understand.”
Take on the bad streaks
Sure, what did you expect! I told him, what is happening to you is very normal. All the strategies and all the tipsters go through both bad and good runs more or less periodically. That’s why I recommend, to minimize the effect of the streaks, that you follow several strategies together at the same time, all them very different from each other (from different markets, different filters, etc). Even so, several strategies together may also be that they go through bad or good punctual streaks, and you always have to be there, prepared to overcome bad times and resist and take advantage of good ones. Here again, psychology plays a very important role.
At the end things are back to normal, take advantage of winning streaks
What is happening to you is very easy to explain, and it has to do with the normalization of statistical data: you go through a bad streak, you lose and you abandon the strategy, and you change to a strategy that is in a good streak. At that time the strategy that is on a good streak goes into a losing streak and you lose again, while the strategy that was in a losing streak has changed its tendency to normalize and has entered a good run, but you left and you are missing it, does it sound familiar to you?
Practical recommendation: be patient, persevere, and draw conclusions about results at least in the medium term, or if possible in the long term, but important, with control, as I will tell you next. Avoid losing bets being constant!
Error number 3: lack of control, absence of stop-loss
As I was saying a moment ago, Johnny, you should keep a regular and routine control over your strategies and your bets. It is not that I tell you, it was said by the famous announcement: -Power is nothing without control-.
I’ll explain to you first why, and then how. The reason is that strategies are something alive over time. They can work and in fact they work for months or years, but at any moment they could stop doing it for various reasons: leagues and teams change, the public change, the oddsmakers change and / or their odds calculation method … we live in a constantly changing world, and strategies are no exception. Therefore, it is necessary to protect yourself in the event that one of the strategies you follow stops working.
Protect yourself against losses
How to protect yourself? My recommendation is to set a stop-loss policy. This is a way to protect against losses and manage them effectively. I’ll give you an example and then you can design your own. Again we can build on the maxDD we talked about earlier. You can write down the maxDD of each of the strategies you follow at the moment you start to follow it. If after starting to follow each strategy, one of them exceeds the historical maxDD you have noted, it would be advisable to stop following that strategy because you have entered a worse streak than any historical bad streak the strategy have had, and this may be a bad signal. It is possible that it recovers and returns to have gains, but also it is possible not to, and by prudence, it might be better to stop following it.
Practical recommendation: define a stop-loss policy that fits to your betting method and exercise a periodic control over your bets and strategies. In this way you will protect yourself against prolonged losses. Avoid losing bets with regular control!
Error number 4: indiscipline
Another thing I wanted to comment on, Johnny, I know that you like soccer, what do you do when your team plays or when you have an intuition for a game? Do you bet on your team or following your intuition? “Of course!” answered me. Serious error I told him.
Avoid losing bets following a system
When you bet intuitively, viscerally, you have everything against you. You are not following any method or system, any recommendation, neither betting because of the result of a thorough analysis of the game in question. You are simply betting with the heart, without any basis, and this will end up leading you to ruin in the medium-long term.
Practical recommendation: analyze, choose and carefully select the strategies or recommendations that you will follow for your bets, and stick to it exclusively, never bet on intuition, because you will usually carry the odds against you. Avoid losing bets being disciplined!
Error number 5: incorrect odds selection
And to finish Johnny, I wanted to ask you, are you paying attention to the odds when you are betting, or are you just betting the pick away? “When I get the pick I bet it directly in my bookmaker, what else could I do?” said Johnny. Again, serious mistake! In bets you do not end up winning or losing because you are able to guess the future and win accordingly, obviously it is not like that. In bets you will end up winning if the odds you play are favorable for you constant and consistently, or in other words, you will end up winning if you make your bets at good odds.
Select your odds carefully
Note that when a tipster recommends a pick, usually recommends at the same time a minimum odd, which according to his criteria, over this value the pick would be favorable for us. Likewise, our strategy analysis tool, Betamin Builder, includes a minimum recommended odd for each pick. It is your decision if you bet below that odd or not; In fact, the results of the Betamin Builder strategies are registered without considering that minimum odd, but usually my recommendation is that you take care about the odds, not only the minimum, but also try to find the bookmaker that offers you the best possible odds.
Practical recommendation: do not ignore the value and meaning of the odds. Find the bookmaker that offers you the best possible odds. For this, you can work with several bookmakers and choose the one that interests you the most in each moment, or you can let an Asian bookmaker aggregator do the work for you and automatically offer you the best odds. Nor do you ignore the meaning of the minimum recommended odds. Avoid losing bets selecting the best odds!
In conclusion, how to avoid losing bets?
In short Johnny, I hope I have helped you to avoid losing bets, and that you do better with your bets in the future. In the end it is simply about being methodical, patient, disciplined, and having self-control, since it is usually the psychological factor that causes us to make mistakes. If we know how to detect them, we will be able to correct them. Always remember that luck does not come by itself, but comes as a result of hard work. That said, good luck!