How are your New Year’s Resolutions going? Have you hit the gym as much as you said you would? Are you saving as much as you promised? Have you broken your new diet already? January 1st always bring us A New Hope to grow and improve for the year ahead, but by the time January 31 rolls around, many of our initial promises to ourselves are broken if not completely abandoned. Don’t worry, this isn’t another self-improvement article or listicle essentially plagiarizing ideas from another self-improvement book I didn’t write (I’m looking at you, Medium “writers”).
With this being a sports betting blog though, I wanted to share my betting resolutions for 2018 with everybody. I know, it’s almost February so this article may seem a month late. But as I pointed out above, I mainly did this on purpose to help me stick to these goals beyond January and possibly (re)inspire you to stick to yours. I also caught the super flu the first week of the year (perks of dating a preschool teacher), so that threw me off my publishing timeline. Either way, let’s dive in, shall we?
Resolution #1: Read One Book Every Week
“Hold the phone Stephen, I thought this WASN’T going to be a generic self-improvement listicle.” It’s not, but bear with me. As someone who is trying to start their own online business and improve their craft every day, I follow a lot of successful entrepreneurs and business executives. People like Tim Ferriss, Gary Vanderchuk, Pat Flynn, Tony Robbins, Sir Richard Branson and Peter Thiel all inspire me in some way and I try to learn as much as I can from them through their books, podcasts and anything else they produce.
I have noticed plenty of common themes among them and the other successful people they interview, but one that sticks out the most is this: successful people read A LOT. The average CEO reads 4-5 books each month. Bill Gates reads 50 books a year. Mark Cuban reads more than three hours every day. When Elon Musk was asked how he learned to build rockets, he replied: “I read books.”
Why do these top executives, entrepreneurs and world-renown newsmen read so much? Because they know that the key to success is constant learning. I used to hate reading and didn’t do much of it outside of the required reading in high school and college, but luckily that has changed over the past couple years. I’m still a horribly slow reader, but I’m working on improving both my pace and volume. Because of this, I’ve made reading one book a week in 2018 one of my main personal resolutions; and it relates to my betting in a big way.
Many of the books I want to read are focused on personal finance, investing and analytics. All three are easily relatable to sports betting, and I intend to share some of the books’ lessons from time to time as they relate to sports betting. So far, I’m still on track as I just finished book number three (Zero to One by Peter Thiel), and am excited to incorporate all the new concepts I will learn throughout the year.
Resolution #2: Earn $10,000 from Sports Investing
As I tell everyone on my About Me page, I am NOT a professional sports bettor (yet). I might look more credible if I said I was like many other Twitter touts, but honesty and transparency are my two main values with this site. However, that doesn’t mean I am not good at what I do or that I don’t make money. It simply means my bankroll is not large enough to fully support my living expenses yet, and that’s okay. With that said, I intend to take a big step forward towards that in 2018.
For most, if not all of you, a $10,000 profit from betting would be incredible (I certainly think so). It’s going to take plenty of discipline, patience and focus, but I have learned a lot betting over the past five years and I believe I have developed the mental and emotional strength to get me there. It’s going to be a grind, but I have more than enough faith in my projections to help me do it.
So, how am I going to get there? In 2017, my picks won 18.6 units on average each month with an ROI of 7.98% - which includes an absolutely horrendous November when I lost 28 units. Adding on the few units I typically win each month following other cappers I respect and trust, I will expect to win about 20 units/month in 2018 if all goes well. That comes out to 240 units for the year. If I were to simply bet the same amount per unit throughout the year, my unit size would need to be about $42.
That doesn’t quite fit my conservative bankroll management approach to start out, so I will be “re-investing” half of my monthly profits and adjusting my unit size to match my bankroll rules. It’s like compound interest on steroids if this goes according to plan. I am starting with a $1,000 bankroll for 2018, and I stick to one unit being 1-2% of my bankroll. In case you don’t subscribe to Fast Break MVP, my picks range from one to four units, but a four-unit bet is extremely rare. Either way, this means my max exposure for a single bet will be 8%; which I am comfortable with.
Here is how the math breaks down assuming a smooth ride to $10,000 (spoiler alert – it will be bumpy):
|Date||Bankroll||Unit Size||Units Won||Winnings||Re-Invest|
Currently, Fast Break MVP picks have won just over 12 units this month and I have made an additional four units from my personal betting. It’s going to be close reaching my 20-unit goal for January, but there’s plenty of time to make up for it if I come up a bit short.
I’m sure some might ask, why not re-invest the entire profit? In the stock market, you haven’t made a dime on an investment until you actually sell it. And in sports betting, you haven’t made anything until you actually withdraw from the sportsbook. This is a lesson I learned the hard way starting out, and will make sure I at least come away with something in 2018. I’ll definitely provide updates for this goal in a future post for anyone wanting to follow along!
Resolution #3: Trust the Process
I know this has become the most cliché saying in sports, but it’s still great advice for anyone wanting to make sports betting a serious source of income. Sam Hinkie, the former General Manager of the 76ers and the Patron Saint of Tanking, originally coined the phrase to earn public support for his blatant efforts to put together the worst team possible for years in order to rebuild the team with top draft picks. As crazy as it seemed, he had a definite plan in place to achieve his goals.
Just as Hinkie did, I need to do a better job trusting my projections and research in good times and bad. In the past, I have lowered unit sizing or straight-up passed on plays my models liked that ended up winning far too many times. I have unit sizing in place based on past results for varying amounts of value, but have still allowed myself to stray from this and allow personal biases to impact my decision.
Having models is meant to reduce these human factors, and I am continuously reminding myself of this. For 2018, I will be sticking to my models as they have proven to properly identify value over the long term. If my baseball model suggests a four unit bet on the Padres, I’ll be playing it for four units.
So, those are my top three betting resolutions for 2018. They are all very ambitious in their own way, but also obtainable. If you’ve read your fair share of goal-setting listicles on Medium then you know these are right in the sweet spot between challenging and impossible to keep me motivated. As I said, I’ll be posting updates here as well as writing about what I’ve learned in the process.
Hopefully, you learned a bit more about me and are (re)inspired to tackle your own goals and resolutions for 2018! To stay updated with my progress, and more importantly, my betting tips, then subscribe here for my weekly newsletter if you haven’t done so already. And if you’re looking for even more insight with my model’s picks and projections, sign-up for Fast Break MVP to receive the same plays that will hopefully help me achieve my 2018 goals. For more information, click here!
Thanks for reading, and I wish you all a healthy and profitable 2018!