So You Want to be a Craps Pro

My first piece of advice on this topic is simple. Don’t give up your day job.

As the Mad Professor once said, “Gambling is a tough way to make an easy living.” Most of the pros I know would agree. But if you insist on taking your shot at playing professionally I strongly suggest you start by developing a plan for success. It all begins with effective goal setting. Here are some of the things you might want to consider as you undertake this task.

1. Understand why you play the game. Why do you play craps? Are you playing for entertainment or are you playing for profit? What is it about the game that makes you willing to spend hours at a time standing at a craps table? Most players take up the game for certain reasons, but eventually find they are playing for different reasons. Entertainment, camaraderie, and the chance to win money are all given as reasons to take up the game. But for the majority of players, craps is not really about winning or losing money. The money is only how we keep score. Craps is really about learning to control YOU. The guys who try to play professional and fail – generally fail because they cannot master themselves. They have no discipline. As you master the game you learn about yourself – your strengths and weaknesses, and how to use and overcome them to become successful. Craps is a gateway to discovering powers and skills we all have, even when we think we don’t. What do you want from the game of craps? What do you want from yourself? The first step is to decide on your own personal motives. Do you want to play for your own reasons – or someone else’s? The choice is yours. Just know the answer.

2. Formulate a plan to achieve your purpose. The first time I drove from Dallas to Las Vegas I had to have a map. But in order to use a map it’s not enough just to know your destination. You also have to know where you are starting from. Without that information I might have ended up in South Dakota. And even with a map, there were several routes to choose from. Some were shorter, some longer. Some were scenic, some more tedious. So before I left Dallas, I formulated a plan that would get me where I was going in the easiest, most enjoyable way. The same is true with your craps plan. Formulate a plan that you will enjoy executing on a daily/weekly basis. If you don’t enjoy it, you won’t do it. And remember, the mental rewards come in the process of accomplishing, not in the accomplishment itself.

3. Measure your results along the way. There’s an old saying in the business world: What gets measured gets done. When you achieve your goal, whether it is a high sevens-to-rolls ratio, a sixty-number hand in the casino, or something as simple as a modest $100 win, you can then decide if that is all you want. If you want more, you simply set another goal. And remember, all precision shooters have sessions where they toss the dice well and still lose money, or toss the dice poorly and win big. Which scenario do you think would provide the most enjoyment? Thinking that only a perfect on-axis toss will bring you the most enjoyment is the route to failure. To improve your toss and play better is an ongoing process that begins with enjoying yourself, which ultimately results in improved play.

4. Acknowledge and reward your success. If your goal is to win a particular amount of money and you fail, acknowledge that the training you put into that effort was still successful. You might not have hit your win objective for that day, but your efforts will lead you to another, perhaps bigger win. Remember, you cannot control every factor at the table. You can only put forth your best effort, which ultimately makes you a winner.

Now is the time to program your craps game for the future. Your current thoughts – the crap between your ears – will create that future. Give your brain the tools it needs to get the results you want.

Remember, in order to set good goals, you must be able to measure your success; the goals must be meaningful to you; they must be under your control, they must be positive, and they must be reachable.

Craps Game Plan:

1. Set goals that you truly want to achieve.

2. Set a reasonable date for achieving your goals

3. Set interim “check-points” to measure progress.

4. Make an action plan for each goal listing the steps you area going to take to achieve it.

5. Set a pace that is comfortable so you won’t feel any stress or anxiety trying to achieve the goal.

6. Acknowledge the smallest successes. If you take care of the small goals, the larger ones will just happen.

7. When you accomplish the goal, congratulate yourself on the success – then set a new goal.

Remember to watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become actions. Watch your actions, they become your habits. Watch your habits, they become character. And watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.