Are you playing the losing game?


When we were young, we’d run around the house and hurt ourselves by accidentally running into a chair. So our folks would let us play the “B” game or the “blame game” and put the blame on the chair:

“Ouch. That hurt! Why did you get in my way? We were having so much fun until YOU spoiled it all. Who do you think you are? You’re bigger and stronger, and you hurt me. You’re a bully. Why don’t you pick on someone your own size?”

And with that, our folks would let us hit the chair to show it who was the boss. “Bad, bad chair!”

For some reason, scolding the chair made it all better. (Of course it’s so much easier to blame the chair than to admit fault.) And we continued playing.

Although you may think this is a kid’s game, some people continue to play the blame game as adults.

“Don’t blame me that I’m out of shape.”
“It’s not my fault that I accumulated all this debt.”
“You’ll probably never trust me again, but…”
“I know I messed up, but…”

I can hear the chorus now, “Bad, bad chair!”

At some point in our lives, when it comes to the “B” game, we all get “A’s”!

You have a choice: You can blame shortcomings on the weather, a bad horoscope, or that it’s a leap year. Or you can get serious. The truth is, when folks deflect responsibility and cast blame, it serves as nothing more than a crutch and a reason to stop trying. Worse yet, people who continually invent excuses why they can’t succeed convince themselves that failure is inevitable. This results in their ultimately losing faith in themselves and their abilities –– and making it a self-fulfilling prophecy. So be careful how you speak to others because you’re probably listening too.

Backed up by so many success stories being told and observed, successful people, on the other hand, don’t blame the world when they fail to achieve something. They accept personal responsibility, learn from their mistakes, and then do something about it. They also know that being unwilling to make the effort is a losing game. In fact, those who say, “I can’t” and “I don’t want to” trigger the same results.

It is important to note — even though you may be making an effort today, things may not be going your way. That’s because you may be paying a price for years of neglect. But that shouldn’t deter you from making the effort now. The truth is, it takes many years to become an overnight success.

The bottom line is, if you want to achieve something in life, get to work. Things don’t happen magically. YOU have to make things happen. So, be positive. Stay focused. And remain determined. If you look into the mirror and don’t like what you see … don’t blame the mirror. Successful people accept responsibility for their destiny; losers play the blame game.


© 2017


Life isn’t a game.


Life, despite popular belief, isn’t a game. It’s the prize.

If you suspect that life might, in truth, be a game, your next step might be to try to figure out what kind of game it is. My recommendation is that you skip that step altogether. Instead, ask yourself what you think the goal might be: a) to win or b) to have fun.

Not that those two are mutually exclusive, but rather to note that they are a) not the same, and b) winning is what happens when the game is over. Hence, in all likelihood, longevity-wise, not the fun it’s cracked up to be.

On the other hand, it’s easy to understand why we make that mistake – thinking that life is a game. Because when we are playing a game, and the game is good and we are playing well, we feel more, well, alive. And we call it “fun.” But the real fun of fun is not because of the game, it’s because of the experience of aliveness, of being in life, in the whole of it, completely. That’s the prize, if you want to call it that, the feeling of being alive. Like the feeling you get when just jump into the swimming pool without even testing how cold the water is first (just look at the dog in the photo!), or the feeling of almost drowning in your lover’s  eyes (look at the photo again, lol), or the feeling you get when you watch animals at play: the sheer aliveness of it all.

And as long as we think of it as a game, especially one that we think we can win, we pretend that we haven’t won yet. We pretend that when we win, and only when we win, we’ll have something we can really celebrate, something we can delight in, victory at last. When all along, the fun, the aliveness we’ve been experiencing is the only victory that counts. The only victory.

And isn’t that just like life?

© 2017