I’m an American, and focus on American sports, so my advice is related to that market, but I’m certain these principles can be applied to other sports and markets spanning the globe.
What else is more fascinating then trying to understand the most complex organ in the world? The mind is a unique thing, and the way in which it processes information is a fascinating topic. In understanding this process it reveals a lot of reasons why people are pre programmed to lose at sports wagering.
The brain has two main elements it uses to process information, the conscious and the subconscious. The conscious mind is what controls your final behavior, but that behavior is largely driven by the subconscious mind.
Lets say when you were young you got attacked by a dog. Do you still feel the physical pain of that attack? Likely not, but you would likely be more resistant to being around dogs later in life based on those events. That is your subconscious mind at work. Information is processed thru the conscious mind and stored in our subconscious; the more trusted the source of the information the more likely it will be stored in the subconscious influencing future behavior.
As a sports analyst in the United States, coverage on our events is all day, as is discussion with friends and associates. When your reading a newspaper, watching TV, talking to friends, your processing information from trusted sources, your conscious mind is not on guard, and subsequently a lot of this information comes pouring into the subconscious. Over 95% of handicappers fail to succeed long term in this industry, and our subconscious minds are flooded with information from those 95% of people.
Odds are made primarily by power lines and public perception. Oddsmakers are very skilled at understanding public perception and what events influence perception. Let’s say you just saw Team A dominate Team B in a high profile match, do you find it likely oddsmakers will release strong value on Team A the following match when they know Team A will be featured in newspapers, TV, and conversations across the country? They know those mechanisms will flood our subconscious. They know the market influences will shift to Team A. Yet nine times out of ten time’s standard players will play Team A again because behavior is driven by the subconscious.
To be successful as a sports investor, you need to reprogram the way your mind processes information.
Despite knowing what I just wrote my subconscious still absorbs all the information from those 95% of losing handicappers. We can’t control that part, but we can be consciously aware of this happening. When an easy winner jumps off the page at you, it’s almost always a result of your subconscious. Instead of picking that easy winner, stop and think are easy winners something that exist? Why is this an easy winner? Does the majority of the market also think this is an easy winner? Usually those answers will quickly stop your subconscious from driving you to poor decisions.
The majority of all sports betters use the subconscious to make decisions. The more you can focus your decisions with the conscious mind, the less likely you will find yourself a pre programmed loser.
All the best – Mike McClain