Are Anxious People Better Poker Players?
Anxiously attached people who worry about separation and abandonment tend to be good lie detectors according to Research Digest.
Being able to delineate when a person is being truthful and when they are lying is a crucial skill for a poker player.
Researchers Tsachi Ein Dor and Adi Perry suggest that anxiously attached individuals seem to be more sensitive to threats in the environment.
Dor and Perry studied various men and women who answered an attachment survey before viewing videos of two people conversing; one was being honest and one was lying. They found that people who scored high in attachment anxiety were better at spotting the lies.
“It appears that anxiety from separation and abandonment, which relates to hyper-activation of an innate psychobiological system (i.e. the attachment system) that promotes survival, is what is driving people’s ability to detect deceit and not an overall sense of tension.”
To link this to real world experience and poker players specifically, the researchers tested 35 semi professional poker players and observed their performance in a poker tournament. This was related more to abandonment anxiety rather than social anxiety and a one-point higher score in anxious attachment was associated with winning an extra 448 chips.
In a past blog we reported that more reserved social cultures tend to have better “Poker faces”.
So how can an individual Brush up on their Poker skills? Men’s Health suggests that you can fake your way to winning.
You need to bluff often and keep a neutral face at all times and most important be inconsistent so that your opponent cannot find the rhythm to your physicality.
Additional tips are to stare at your opponent right between the eye and study the stress and smile lines around your opponent’s eyes because they are the hardest to hide!