Ever since founding the Pokercode, it was one of our absolute first defined cornerstones, that anything we‘d do, we‘d try to involve the immeasurable power of community synergies into our thinking and doing. Since Fedor has always been repeatedly emphasizing the attribution of an unlocking community to his own poker success, it’s been very clear for us that before anything else we want to provide a welcoming environment for our users to exchange and get access to our internal team as well as head coaches. Naturally, ever since founding our team community slack in mid-2019, many, many Pokercode members joined, of which a solidly sized, truly loyal and very accountable and supportive group of Day 1 members keeps the interaction alive, and wholeheartedly welcomes new community members ever since on a daily basis, to our ever-growing, nice and neat, and always supportive team pokercode community.
However, today‘s blog post should not be a community anthem, but actually shed light on one very special and unique part of this initial and early adopting day1 community member base: Johanna.
Right from the very early beginnings of welcoming our first ever team members, our curiosity has been sparking on where these guys, seemingly feeling attracted to the Pokercode, actually come from. Not to our small surprise have we identified that a substantial part of our team community doesn't consist of pro players trying to grasp that final % of edge they can somewhere find and exploit, but of very 'normal' people, just from right in the middle of the society. Smart, often humble, and pretty much always very passionate poker enthusiasts who simply want to challenge themselves and become better poker players. All that holds true for Johanna as well. Johanna is a Zurich and Germany (commuting based on job and personal life requirements) based teacher and wine expert entrepreneur. Moreover, Johanna up until today has been playing poker passionately for about eight years. Mostly in live games in Germany focusing on the challenging and fascinating environment of MTTs.
Pokercode's CEO Johannes sat down with Johanna to talk about her personal Pokercode journey.
Johannes: Now, Johanna, why have you even decided to give Pokercode a shot in the first place?
Johanna: I had been playing recreationally for a few years, mainly live tournaments and mainly in a fun live community in Berlin, as well as some awesome PokerStars live events. When I saw a Pokercode ad, it was at a time when I hadn't been able to play much for about 2 years due to my jobs. Remembering Fedor from a live encounter and from following his path in the media I knew 3 things: He's totally trustworthy (which is somewhat rare in poker), he's a great player, and he knows how to surround himself with great people. So I thought: okay, I still can't play much right now but that might change again in the future and NOW is the time to FINALLY get some coaching and to become the best tournament player I can be.
Up to that point, I had never had any "real" coaching and all my learning had come from reading some books and watching some classic, widely available videos. Also, having observed how important solvers have become, I knew that some of my basic strategies really needed to be looked at and adapted if I wanted to improve. Up to that point, I had asked several players for some coaching in a trade-off for wine coaching from my end, but strangely enough, none of them were up for such a deal. loud laughter Well, now there was a chance for me to get coaching within a community and both the timing and the people just felt right, so I went for it.
Johannes: Have your expectations towards the Pokercode been fulfilled? How do you look back at your first 1.5 years with us, after having joined the family as one of our first members, back in July 2019?
Johanna: Absolutely, and then some! I put my trust and energy into something truly inspiring and I'm so happy to have taken this step back in 2019. The course has evolved enormously since its start. The wonderful team took our suggestions and comments and wishes on board, and they even welcomed our criticism in a very positive way. In this way, the trust has become even deeper within our community. I'm simply immensely grateful to be part of such an open-minded and open-hearted community. Also, it's one thing to have fantastic coaches and an outstanding CEO but in addition to this, our community is also so supportive on so many levels. It is in this community that we are encouraged to become better people in a very multifaceted way. So many of us have opened up and taken the chance to walk our paths together, trying to improve. It all started with us wanting to get better at poker but it has evolved into our open-minded members supporting each other beyond poker. We all want to improve and we all want to live our lives to the fullest and we all share the fascinating hobby/profession of poker.
Johannes: As a matter of giving our readers the full and bigger picture. It's not world women's day that led us to write a little piece about you, nor has it honestly been that your poker journey is so much more exciting and entertaining than anyone else's, even though I have to admit it’s quite enjoyable to listen to you. However, the actual reason for this story about you is that your “accountability thread” just had its one-year anniversary. I can exactly recall how you started your cardio challenge on March 8th, 2020, and wanted it to last “till Easter”. Now, one year later, the thread has more followers than ever in our community Slack and everyone is happily witnessing and accompanying your way up. Tell us more about the project, which has already grown to hundreds of diary entries as well as encouraging community cheer-messages, alongside plenty of different challenges, all leading up towards holding you accountable for your personal and professional growth!
Johanna: Well, a year ago was right when shit started to hit the fan regarding Covid-19. And I thought: okay, if there has ever been a time to do good things for my health, it is now. From my past energy boost periods regarding doing sports regularly, I knew that it would be hard to keep up that initial fire (because being lazy and not going out into that snowstorm is just so much more comfortable, right?!). So I thought, wait, why don't I force myself to keep a diary in our community channel called "Optimize Your Life"? That way, I would really have to be honest and be accountable for my daily choices. The challenge started out with the goal of doing at least 30 minutes of cardio on at least 5 out of 7 days "till Easter". Then, having received a tip from our cherished team member Miguel to check out "Atomic Habits", I extended it to 67 days and now it has become a whole year. I can only say: My log has truly helped me in building a very positive habit and I'm so grateful for that. I highly recommend doing such challenges within a community like ours because it will make it so much easier to stick with whatever it is you want to achieve. There have been so many log entries of mine amounting to something like this: "OMG, I would never have gone out today, I really only did it because of my challenge. Thanks, Team, I'm so super happy now!" And then I would get some kind and funny reactions, or something like "gogogo", and it would always lift my mood and make me keep enjoying my challenge.
Johannes: Well, the community definitely is cheering you on up until today. Also, needless to tell our community members how important of a role you’ve been having in our community as one of our biggest critics, and also most loyal supporters. Little surprise it is, that we decided to announce to our community a little over a month back, that we’d add a custom “Johanna” emoji to our slack community. Everything that is truly outstandingly great, can now be reacted upon with “you” literally. What do you think about that, and at the same time, what do your future goals and plans look like?
Johanna: I was speechless and I was just laughing out loud so cheerfully when I found out about that special "happy Johanna" emoji. I mean, WOW! I feel super honored and I obviously love this incredibly funny idea. I also loved how our community reacted. They were so positive and joined in on this fun emoji madness. The whole emoji thing was kind of like the cherry on top. The cake being our community and my interaction with everyone and all the interactions between members and our magic CEO and our fabulous coaches. I put my trust in Fedor's "product" back when I joined and it turned out to be so much more than a poker product and all my trust was completely justified. It's the people behind this "product" that make it so special and this is something that no money in the world can buy. The makers of Pokercode are not only highly qualified at poker but they also deeply care about helping us members to become the best we can be, as I've already said above. Finally, I want to say to anyone pondering on joining the Pokercode: Just do it and see where it takes you. And feel free to contact me in our Slack community and I'll be very happy to help!
Regarding my goals for the future, at the moment I still can't play any live poker due to work-related circumstances and, of course, due to Covid-19. However, I plan to keep studying as much as I can besides my jobs and my everyday obligations. I will keep engaging in our wonderful community and I hope to keep improving in many ways. And yes, there is a dream at the back of my mind, of course, to one day go really deep in an EPT or in similar events, once we have overcome the pandemic and when I can fit playing live again into my everyday life. We'll see. Stay tuned.
Johannes: Thanks for taking the time to talk with me and share your story, Johanna!
Now, today the day has come where said community thread is counting exactly 365 days of existence, celebrating over 300 of „Johanna accountability posts“! We consider this an impressive feat and many, many members actively follow and feedback Johanna‘s journey through an active, healthy, fulfilling, and exciting life! Combining the roles of being a teacher, wine expert, entrepreneur, and aspiring poker player, all with the usual personal obligations and roles we all embody in our lives, is definitely not an easy thing to do. We say CHAPEAU and therefore: Cheers and off to another year of accompaniment and collaboration! Thanks for being such a supportive, challenging, mindful, and reflected team community member ever since day1!
What do you think about Johanna‘s journey? How do you keep track of your progress, how do you hold yourself accountable on your personal journey?
I cannot wait to hear your feedback and input via email and feel free to make use of our freshly implemented feedback functionality!
yours, Johannes from the Pokercode-Team
CEO & Co-Founder
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