Don’t fall prey to common gambling fallacies. Gambling can be fun – even addictive. However, certain widely-circulated gambling strategies that at first appear to be “common sense” are, in fact, mathematically false. Below are just a few things you should keep in mind when you go gambling – don’t lose more money than you have to!
- You’re never “due” to win. If you’ve been at the Texas Hold ‘Em table for an hour and you haven’t been dealt a single good hand, you may want to stay in the game in the hopes that a winning straight or flush is “right around the corner.” Unfortunately, your odds don’t change with the amount of time you’ve been gambling. The cards are randomly shuffled before every deal, so if you’ve had ten bad hands in a row, you’re just as likely to get another bad hand as you are if you’ve had a hundred bad hands in a row. This extends to most other games of chance – roulette, slots, etc.
- Sticking with one specific bet won’t increase your odds. You may know someone who has “lucky” lotto numbers – though it can be fun to bet money on numbers that have special personal meaning, in random games of chance, you’re never more likely to win by betting on the same thing every time than you are by betting on a different thing every time. Lottery numbers, slots, and roulette wheels are completely random. In roulette, for example, it’s just as likely that you’ll roll “9” three times in a row as it is that you’ll roll any specific three numbers in order.
- If you’re one away from the winning number, you weren’t “close.” If you pick the number 41 for the lottery and the winning number is revealed as 42, you may feel absolutely crushed, but cheer up! You weren’t even close. Two numbers that are close together, like 41 and 42, aren’t mathematically connected in any way in random games of chance.