As the chips came my way and the sense of victory filled me, my heart began to slow down, began to come back down to earth. Sure, I had just won.
Sure, I had just showed up to this small place and beat some guys that knew what they were doing while I had only played a couple times. And sure, it was just a small game, one of many games that have been played all over, but it got me thinking over the subject of beginner’s luck.
What do people mean when they say beginner’s luck? What causes it, and does it have any validity when thinking objectively?
To check out this phenomena we should look at the state of the beginner while playing or doing any activity. If you look at the beginner usually they have no idea about how to go about things. Their actions usually reflect what they’ve seen on TV, what they’ve heard, or they just make it up as they see fit. This can be considered a good thing in some respects though. If you’ve never experienced something, you’ve not become accustomed to various social norms in respect to that activity. You’ve got imagination and a youthful repose that helps bring a new angle to the table, an angle that may show disadvantages to the normal activity.
I believe this is the beginner’s luck that is so talked about. The beginner is simple to the game, and thus takes the simplest route when acting within the activity and alot of veterans will tell you that simple equals good. The veterans themselves take the simplest route as well, but the true beginner will never beat the true veteran.
The true veteran acts with unchained imagination and acts with the simplest and best route, but he does so with a greater understanding of the activity. He is not simple to the activity, he has simplified the activity and thus has a greater advantage over the beginner. The beginner acts according to what he thinks he knows, while the veterans acts accordingly to what he knows he knows. The veterans movements are direct and quick, not sporadic and random like the beginner.
The beginner’s luck soon runs out because he lacks a true understanding of the workings of the activity, and thus cannot foresee all possible situations.
So if there is one thing we can learn from the beginner, it would be imagination. Never to lose your imagination and fall victim to the social norm, because that is when your movements are drawn out and become inefficient, they become like everyone elses. Instead, you should try to gain knowledge about the activity while still keeping the idea of moving outside the box, always trying to see it in a new light.
So sure, I won a game of poker, but most likely I will get my ass handed to me next time because my scope of the game is so small, I lack wisdom in relation to it. This isn’t a bad thing though.
You can’t expect to be the best while just starting something, it just doesn’t work, but remember to never lose that yearning for it.