We Hate Losing More Than We Like Winning By a Ratio of 1.5/1

Picture This

Remember ‘Picture Day’? Those pictures in school? You would line up to be called forward. If you had braces you would not smile… If you had a chipped tooth the same… A picture that would freeze time for you for the rest of your existence. Your parents would worship them.  Those pictures are blazed into your memory forever… Year one, third grade, sixth form, high school, college and even graduation? I think you get the idea. Oh dear… There they are on the mantle, in the kitchen, on the fridge… even in wallet size! We all know those pictures of ourselves. Loved them and hated them at the same time. My hair! My shirt or blouse! My face… oh jeez…

So what? So everything, here is why… What is the worst bet you ever made? What is the worst decision in business (or in life) that you ever made? Pretty easy to recall right? Now let’s think again… What is the best bet you ever made? What’s the best decision you ever made in business (or in life)?

Kind of have to think for a moment right? But the truth is we humans are hard-wired to remember our mistakes more than our successes. Good for us, it made us more likely to survive as a species… Gambling, of any kind? Not so much… One gets smacked around at online casinos and sports books such as Boylesports all the time. We hate losing more than we like winning by a ratio of roughly 1.5/1… Yup, behavioural economic studies have confirmed this.

Two For The Money – A classic win it all then lose it all gamblers tale

Memory Slip
Ok we got that, but so what? So everything! Our school pictures are branded into our brain. You know them, you have an image of them. And I bet you can recall without hesitation what you were wearing in first form at your first ‘photo shoot’ … Odd right? I know I can remember… If you do that makes you human, and like or not you are human. Simple… right? There are some things that are timeless in our experience… There are other things that simply slip and slide away, (thank you Simon and Garfunkel).

“I know a woman
Became a wife
These are the very words she uses
To describe her life
She said a good day
Ain’t got no rain
She said a bad day’s when I lie in bed
And think of things that might have been.”

Mistakes Happen – Occasionally
Our point is that your life is a book and your gambling activities is a chapter in that book. You will make big mistakes. Try not to learn too much from those mistakes. If Mo Salah misses an open goal does that mean that he will never score another goal? Of course not. Just go out and give it your best… ‘Whoah God only knows, God makes his plan, the information’s unavailable to the mortal man.” 

So do the math. Do the back tests. You may “Slip Slide Away”, but hey picture day was then, this is now. We’ll wager you still remember what you were wearing on that day though… at least that memory did not “Slip Slide Away.” Please don’t let the math and the related behavioural concepts do the same.

In “Confessions of a Winning Poker Player,” Jack King says, “Few players recall big pots they have won, strange as it seems, but every player can remember with remarkable accuracy the outstanding tough beats of his career.” Nothing gets our point across better. In short, sometimes you need to press CTRL/ALT/DEL all at the same time to make the best decisions particularly when trying to optimize your chances when betting on sports or playing games such as Blackjack.