The psychology behind sports betting
The last time I wrote about sports betting, there was talk about the importance of dedicating yourself to it – doing some preliminary research on the sports or subjects you’re going to bet on – as well as the need to analyse every aspect of sports betting.
This time, however, I would write about the psychology of sports betting and the factors that can drive your decisions without you being aware of it.
1. You make better decisions when you are hungry.
“You’re not yourself when you’re hungry” is a famous chocolate slogan. But before you reach for that chocolate, note that when it comes to making sports predictions, “not being yourself” is a good thing! Research has proven that hungry people are better at predicting results. It has also been found that when you are hungry, you value future returns on sports bets more.
2. Seasons cloud your judgement.
Believe it or not, the seasons have a huge power over your decisions! Our ancestors cared about the seasons many times more than we do now, because cold seasons meant less food and more danger. So they learnt to live more conservatively in winter and took fewer risks. And while most of us don’t have such concerns today, our brains are still programmed to take fewer risks as the days get shorter. This is evidenced by the way stock markets around the world are tracked – traders on stock markets in countries further north than the equator take fewer risks in the colder seasons, and the same wisdom applies to sports betting.
Knowing this can help you to be more objective in your risk-taking and not be seasonally dependent.
3. Take more risks when you’re happy
People who have recurring bouts of depression are often advised not to make big life-changing decisions at a time of depression because their judgment is impaired at that point. But what they don’t mention is that the opposite can also happen!
In fact, it’s a known fact that a whole range of moods negatively affect our decision-making, and it’s especially the state of happiness that makes us take more risks. For example, it is not advisable to bet when you are in a good mood with friends in the pub and someone has just bought you a drink. Similarly, if you have just won, you are in a state of ecstasy, and you are more likely to make a bad bet in such a situation, driven by emotions.
You should control your emotions, or at least take them into account when making bets – you need to understand how they affect your decisions. Try to make your sports bet at a moment when you are in a neutral state and environment! This way you have a better chance of making an adequate choice and it will increase your chances of winning many times over!