Lee Davy sits down with the World Series of Poker bracelet winner, Jackie Glazier, to talk about her recent split with 888Poker, her decision to stay away from the World Series of Poker for the first time in seven years, and much more.
Jackie Glazier is inspirational, thoughtful, and a grafter of the highest order. She is a dedicated Amazonian with high expectations and a heart of solid gold.
When I learned she was going through a difficult time recently, it sent me into a state of introspection. Questions regarding the meaning of life fluttered around me on the wings of butterflies. I needed to learn more. And so I asked. And she answered.
The World Series of Poker is in full swing. You are not there for the first time in seven years. Talk about how that makes you feel?
“I have a lot of mixed emotions about missing the WSOP this year. If you look at my results over the last 7 years, the majority of my earnings have come from my time spent in Vegas over the summer. I know that I am missing opportunities that we do not have here in Australia by not going so I have feelings of regret and also feel a little guilty. Once Jamie and I made the decision to stay home this year, I felt an overwhelming sense of relief. Ultimately I knew it would be difficult for me to bring my ‘A-game’ to the long gruelling series this year and I needed to put my well being as the number one priority. I know it is the right decision for me, but the Twitter updates make it very tempting to book a flight and get over there!”
How do you feel knowing that 888Poker is not there for you any longer in an industry where sponsorships are so rare to find and so important regarding bankroll?
“I had a great 3 years with 888poker. I have a very strong work ethic and feel confident other opportunities will arise that are aligned with my passion for growing the Australian market especially at the grass roots level. Of course, sponsorship makes bankroll management a lot easier, but I feel confident that I will be successful in the future with or without a sponsor. I also believe I can continue working as an ambassador for the game without the support of a sponsor, and I am still committed to that role.”
Go back to the moment Jamie and you started talking about the Dynamic by Design Podcast. What were your thoughts and ideas, and where do you ultimately want to take it, and what value do you want to provide?
“After Aussie Millions when I was feeling lost, Jamie and I chatted about whether I wanted to continue to play poker anymore or if I should return to a ‘normal’ 9-5 job. = It seemed strange to me that we were talking about such extremes. Why couldn’t I design a life for myself that was less rigid?
“Jamie runs a business called Dare2Dream. The main focus of his business is helping athletes/sportspeople to achieve peak mental performance in their chosen sport. We then started to talk about a theory called ‘life design’…..Building a life that you want by setting up processes and actions that align with your lifestyle goals. It is based more around having a lifestyle dream and how you can achieve that life.
“I didn’t want to give up on poker just because the last two years had been tough. I wanted to continue to be an ambassador for the game even though I knew that I would not be continuing with 888poker by the time the WSOP started. How was I going to achieve and build this dynamic life?
“We decided to start the podcast to document my journey forward. We also hoped that by doing the podcast we could inspire other people to create a more fulfilling and dynamic life for themselves. We have since decided to move the podcast to a weekly Facebook ‘live’ instead. We think this platform will allow anyone following to be more interactive in the discussions.”
Why do you feel the need to serve the grassroots players?
“I am so passionate about this for several reasons. Firstly so much of the support I have received over the past 7 years has come from this community. Poker has given me so many amazing experiences, and I credit a lot of my success to the constant support (during the highs and the lows) from these grassroots players.
“I feel a need to give back to the game that has given me so much and believe that the recreational poker player is fundamental to the growth of the game. If I can help some of these players take their game to the next level or inspire them in any way to work on chasing their dreams, that would be amazing.”
I listened to the first two episodes of the Dynamic by Design podcast. You talked about how tough it was going through a downswing. Jamie mentioned the word ‘depression’. Can you describe in words, what was going through your mind during the darkest days, and how those thoughts affected your day-to-day living?
“For the past 7 years I have placed far too much emphasis on my results on the table and how that has directly impacted my personal self-worth. I got so caught up in being a “poker player” that it consumed my entire identity. Every poker player will experience a downswing but as my results plummeted so did my self-worth.
“I fought hard to stay positive, but after the Aussie Millions finished at the start of this year, I just felt so disappointed and disheartened. I decided to take a month off and try and shake off the negativity I was feeling, but I just ended up feeling more lost. I would wake up in the morning, and it would be a beautiful summer’s day outside, but I had no motivation even to get up. Things that normally brought me joy such as catching up with friends, going to the gym or spending time at the beach, no longer held any appeal. It was a really tough time, and I found it really difficult to articulate how I was feeling. It is hard to talk about something that you do not even understand yourself properly.
“Depression is a term I don’t really want to throw around lightly. Yes, I was feeling miserable, but I do not think I had clinical depression. It was more ‘circumstantial’. I wasn’t paying enough attention to the way poker was making me feel about myself over the past 2 years. I was working harder than ever on my game but not seeing any rewards; naturally that is going to feel demoralising.”
What would your advice be to people in similar spots?
“In November, I went to the Ronda Rousey vs. Holly Holm fight here in Melbourne. I am not really into UFC, but I went to the fight because I admire Ronda Rousey a lot. I find her inspiring especially with the way she has forged herself in such a male dominated environment, her dedication to training and her competitive spirit. Her comment after losing the fight; “What am I anymore if I’m not this”, was so sad but resonated so strongly with me.
“The best advice I can give to people in similar spots is that who you are as a person needs to have far more importance than whether you are winning or losing at the poker table or your results on a sporting field. Instead, build your self-worth around who you are as a person, your morals, and how you treat other people.”
What are you most grateful for and how do you practice gratitude in your daily life?
“I have so much to be grateful for, but the thing I am most grateful for is the loving relationships I have in my life. I practice being in the moment at all times and appreciate even the smallest things.”
What is the worst prejudice you have ever endured?
“Of course, there have been times in my life that I think I have been treated unfairly or judged wrongly, but I have to admit I have dodged any prejudice that has affected me too much. I tend to place more weight on the opinions of those that matter to me.”
What was the moment in life when you felt most in love?
“There have been way too many moments to pick just one. I feel I have lived an amazing life so far, filled with so many adventures and experiences that have totally overwhelmed me.”
It’s 23rd June 2012. You have just won half a million dollars in the WSOP. What would you have done differently if you could travel back in time and give yourself some advice?
“I know it sounds strange, but I took winning half a million dollars really badly! I was so tough on myself for not winning that bracelet. I literally cried about it for days. Looking back on all my poker results I realise that I really only fully celebrated the wins (1st place only). If I could travel back in time, I would celebrate the deep runs a lot more and be less emotionally harsh on myself.”