Hello poker players, in our ‘Unheard stories’ series, we get you excerpts from yet another poker players life. Maria Kirloskar is an accomplished poker pro, author, entrepreneur, and mindset coach for poker players. This week we had a conversation with Maria and her husband, Rajiv Kirloskar to know more about how they approach the game, family acceptance and more.
The experience was a bit different for me as I made the decision to play poker after being in the corporate world for over 25 years. I continued to run my business research consultancy during the first two years of playing poker on the live circuit and chose to play poker full time when PokerBaazi signed me to be part of their wonderful Pro team. My mother was not too happy when I told her about my decision but now because I also work as a mindset coach for poker players, she understands that I am helping people!
Although I have not faced any hurdles, I do know that some of my friends and students in the poker community face disapproval and disrespect from their family and friends. This is all because of an old-fashioned notion that poker is just another form of gambling. This affects their self-worth as well as their relationships. If we want people to understand that poker is a mind sport, then it is our responsibility to behave like elite athletes and not gamblers. Until that happens, I doubt that this entrenched impression will change any time sooner.
I discussed the possibility of playing poker full time with Rajiv, my husband and he was very enthusiastic as we started learning the game together in the days of Zynga! He knows how passionate I am about poker; he is my biggest supporter and my best mindset coach. I did not feel I had to announce that my career change to anyone. When I started telling family and friends, during conversations, they were very excited as well as envious that I was taking the path to become a professional poker player!
I take great pride in telling everyone that my wife is a professional poker player. I love the reaction; at times, it is both, shock and amazement, but most often disbelief! Maria always looked for challenges in her career and has been fearless in the choices she has made. The commitment she has shown to learning something as complex as poker and finding ways to continuously improve every day has been inspiring to witness. As a spouse, you get to experience first-hand how difficult the game is, and that realization makes you truly respect the game and the poker fraternity. I think the biggest perk has been sharing this exciting journey with her and seeing the industry evolve from its early nascent days in India
We love the approach that Maria and Rajiv Kirloskar have towards the game of poker and the industry. We wish Maria a great year ahead and hope to see her win several trophies, crowns and titles. To know more about poker players and their other halves, keep reading GutshotMagazine.com. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Telegram.
Manthra Koliyer is a writer at Gutshot Magazine. She has an affinity for seeing the world through people’s eyes. With a bubbly fun personality, you can always catch her chatting with anyone she comes across. Holding an English Literature degree from Wilson College, Mumbai, this pop culture fanatic is ready to take on the world with a pen, paper, and microphone. She also actively works on her personal blog called namasteyconvict.blogspot.com, where for a moment she lets you into her drama-filled world.
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