April 30, 2022

Jon Van Fleet on Streaming Success, Mental Health & His Purpose in Life | Ep: 32

On this episode of The Heart of Poker, Kara sits down with a true online poker OG, Jon “apestyles” Van Fleet. 

Van Fleet, who regularly crushed the biggest online MTT’s in the mid 2000’s, continues to grind to this day and currently sits at #3 for all-time online poker winnings with over $20,300,000 in online cashes. 

But his journey to this accomplishment hasn’t been without its share of challenges along the way. Now nearly 9 years sober, Van Fleet recalls multiple occasions where he punted his entire bankroll while playing in an intoxicated state. 

However, as challenging situations often do, those moments (and the subsequent healing journey that followed) provided Van Fleet with tremendous insights into himself and his purpose in life: to touch lives positively and to give love. 

Jon shares one particularly impactful experience of his healing journey when during day 3 of a 10-day silent retreat he was completely overwhelmed by a feeling of “being on fire with loneliness”. Working through this moment with the retreat leader, he was able to recognize that moment as a release of all the negative emotions he had pushed down over the years. 

Kara and Jon go on to discuss a variety of topics including setting boundaries, the fear of rejection and how streaming (and the loss of anonymity that comes with it), has affected Jon's experience at live tournaments.  

Don’t forget to check out previous episodes with Adam Pliska, Nadya Magnus, Brandon Shack-Harris, Jason Koon, Ebony Kenney, Benny Glaser, Maria Ho and many more of poker’s most fascinating personalities. 

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