Tag Archives: anxiety

I miss the poker world – My build-up to Vegas/weight loss challenge

So I’ve kept my head down, got my life together and dealt with some depression and anxiety issues and now I feel better than I ever have. Well almost better. Dealing with mental health issues like depression is draining. For me it meant, getting on the right medicine and cognitive-behavioral therapy and disappearing. Whenever I fall into depression I gain a lot of weight. Last year I gained a whopping 42lbs. Crazy I know. My first reaction was to hate myself for doing that to my body, but I don’t. Not even a little bit. I did what was best for my mind and at the time it came with some weight gain. It has given me a goal.

I started my weight loss journey January 1st and I’ve already lost 22 lbs. I’m doing a form of a keto diet + some additional restrictions. Now that I’m in a routine with 0 cheating. I’m adding in my next goal.

A bankroll challenge for myself. Well not really a bankroll challenge, more like a get my ass to Vegas this summer challenge. I’m going to start this with $100 US and play the hero games on partypoker.com .  Why those games? Because they are crazy soft. Throughout my challenge, I am going to be giving myself some tier goals to keep it fun. However, if I don’t lose the rest of the weight I gained (20lbs) by June then I won’t be going to Vegas and that would be a shame.

My first tier goal (I’m calling it the bottom of the barrel tier) is $885 US that would be 7 days/airfare and hotel staying in old Vegas.I’ll be starting this March 1st.

I’ll be starting this March 1st.

My bankroll guidelines will be:

I really just want to bring the reason that I started playing poker back into my life and that is because I loved the game.

I have a lot of other goals that I want to get done this year. I’m adding them in slowly to build up routines but I am pretty sure it is going to be a crazy productive year for me.

Reach out #BellLetsTalk

I tried to stay off social media today. As much as I support the cause, it is a hard day for me. I still live in fear of falling back into depression and anxiety. Yet, I find myself having to post an hour before midnight.

I personally still have days where I lock myself in my room. They are few but they still happen. I still break down when I think about how my life changed, and I still get embarrassed about it. I know this is something I can’t control. I know that when this happens, I’m irrational, but it just might be a part of me for the rest of my life.

For the longest time I have felt and said “I’m not the person I was before I got sick.” I thought that was a bad thing. It isn’t! It is a great thing! It has lead me to change my life, and has opened my mind up on what matters to me. I now focus on things that I really love or can learn from.

I couldn’t have survived what I went through if I didn’t have the support of my friends and family. If I didn’t have the courage to go see a counselor or a doctor. If you know someone you think is depressed or that you know has anxiety attacks, reach out and listen to them. It may be an awkward conversation but at least it is a conversation. Don’t leave your friends, family or coworkers to battle this alone, help them to get the help that they need.

If you haven’t already please tweet about #BellLetsTalk and be part of the conversation.

Social anxiety and social media contests

The last few weeks a lot of people haven’t heard much from me. Mostly because I qualified for a chance of a lifetime. The chance to be Andre Akkari’s Protege. If I am picked as his protege I would win private training from him, tickets into 3 wcoop events including the main event. Plus, the protege that makes the most money playing those tickets will win a PCA package.

Step 1 – Come in the top two of his qualifier MTTs

Step 2 – Create a video as to why he should pick you.

Now, this is way out of my comfort zone. Over the last two weeks I have debated not doing the video. Mostly because my anxiety. As silly as it sounds. I don’t really like people seeing me, rather the thought of being judged, I guess. So why did I torture myself to finish the video and upload it. Simple, the opportunity is too good to not try and my fear is illogical.

It isn’t winning or losing because I’ve already won.

I’ve already conquered one of my biggest fears. Will I be doing video blogs anytime soon. Hell no, but just a few months ago someone asked me to do a video endorsement for them and I had to say no. The thought of being seen made me feel sick. Only time will tell how I feel once people actually watch the video.

Another win was because I was working on this video I learned a new program, after effects. I could have paid someone about $15 an hour to help me using a freelancer site, it would have looked much better but I wouldn’t have done it myself.

The rest is up to André and Pokerstars if I make it to the next step.

Here is the sneak preview.

Why poker is more than a game.

I am writing this blog specifically for you those fighting to stop ipoker. I want to show you why online poker is more than just a game. Four years ago I wrote this blog on a poker social network.

A few weeks ago, I posted a blog about my rough patch. A month ago I had been diagnosed with anxiety and depression. After months of feeling down, hiding panic attacks and endless crying. I went to see a shrink that I had visited in the past. The moment she looked at me she told me, that I was sick and I needed to see a doctor. After careful decision, I decided to take the medication that the doctor prescribed, and try to continue working. I tried to hide this from my family and friends as for some reason I had felt like I had failed. All came crashing down one day when I had a panic attack that I couldn’t control. I was sent home on a two week vacation to get myself together. During that two weeks, I had countless doctor and shrink appointments.

I have now been off work for almost a month. I have started to sleep, and eat again. The rest will slowly get back to normal I hope and I will be able to return to work.

Why am I telling you this? Because I need to, I feel like it will help me come to terms and stopped feeling ashamed of what I’ve turned into. Right now I don’t want to go outside and face the world, I just want to stay at home. Poker seems to be the only thing that I enjoy, but I really want to get back to going to the gym, I just can’t bring myself to run into anyone yet. The last two days, I have had a extra hard time and also thought this might help.

I received countless replies both private and on the forum. That made my life a little easier to live. To this day when I play poker online I know I am doing something great for my mind. It gets a workout. I get to practice thinking logically. Not to mention the amount of amazing people that I would have never had the chance to interact with had I not joined a poker forum. A few months later I was back at work. I still played poker at night and on weekends and was getting ready for my first ever trip to Vegas. A member of that forum had won a trip but couldn’t go so they gave me the tournament buyin portion of the prize.

Since then I go to Vegas once a year. In 2012 I final tabled the Ladies WSOP. None of this would have happened if I didn’t learn to play poker online. Just another great experience I got to have because of online poker.

Online poker players are not criminals. You keep trying to paint us all as these evil money hungry scammers. We aren’t. We just found something in life that we enjoy that happens to have money as a reward if we work hard on our game. If you want to know why we take your campaign against us so personally. It is personal, you are calling me a criminal. You don’t play poker so you can’t possibly understand how this game is truly a wonderful thing.

Do people try to cheat? Yes. They do that in Brick and Mortar games also. In the past sites have caught cheaters, banned them and returned the money to players that were cheated from. So don’t paint the online poker world as something that pushes it under the rug. They don’t. We have communities that callout scum and sites have security departments that are on the lookout for odd behavior. Cheating happens in every industry. People try to cut corners or gain an unfair advantage. With your logic every business that money switches from person to person should be illegal. Just in case.

So far I have found all the propaganda you have been spewing about online gambling disgusting. It is like watching and reading examples from bad marketing book on scare tactics. This last Youtube ad on underage player is a perfect example of how you don’t know what you are fighting against and are uniformed. Not only was this posted but the comments were all deleted. So much for having a voice? I took the time to watch your video you can have the respect not to delete my comment. I didn’t say anything vulgar just my opinion.

I don’t know what you have a passion for but everyone needs something like online poker has been for me. It has helped not only improve my life but has given me opportunities that others wish they had they had and the courage to take them. Just imagine if someone had the power to take away your dream. Or do you deserve happiness more than me?

Still Grinding

I didn’t play a lot the last few days. I haven’t been feeling well. Not in the way that most people don’t feel good. Last week was Mental Health Awareness Week. As my friends and family know I deal with depression and anxiety. I am happy that Mental Health is becoming talked about more but for me last week it made my mind race and that made me unable to play or do things that I normally do.

I posted this on my Facebook and tweeted and I thank all my friends and family that did also.

bellletstalk

For those that saw it and didn’t I don’t really understand why you didn’t. I am not trying to be rude I just don’t think people understand how big of an issue it is.

Did you know that the chances of having a mental illness in your lifetime are 1 in 5? That is reason enough to talk about it.

…. So I didn’t play much the last 8 days and that cost me the +edge.

leaderboard

For those of you that work. Below is my what I would consider my time sheet. It shows how little I have played the last little while.

haventplayed a lot

But I was able to still cash in the Adrenaline Rush Knockout Board even with my drop in

adrprize

Yesterday I met up with a friend for lunch. I went to the famous Schwartz Deli http://schwartzsdeli.com. A must if you are visiting Montreal. Normally they have a huge line to get in but it is worth the wait. We had a smoked meat sandwich, so amazingly yummy. After lunch I walked up Mt. Royal and got a manicure. A perfect day.

I played a fair bit today and I am ready to get back to the grind.