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What is the point of winning if you don’t choose the game?

 In Others, Blog

Most of us have been taught that winning is everything.
For the older generation, only those winning got a prize. For the younger generation, winning is made important by stating that “everyone is a winner”.

Of course, coming first has a certain number of advantages. Adulation of the crowd, prizes, and that glowing feeling of being better than the rest.

So what exactly am I asking?
I am questioning whether we ought to pour our energy, time and passion into winning when we are in a race that doesn’t “do it for us”.

And I am asking, because way too often, we’re told to compete in areas that are actually quite indifferent to us.

For example, take “keeping up with the Joneses”.
How often do you take into account what your neighbours/colleagues/friends might think when you choose the car you want, the suit you wear or the handbag you carry?

This is a race, a game, which is about outshining others.
Do you choose to play it, or are you just going along with it, in the process spending money to “win”?

Or take your professional career.
Do you want to be the boss? Really want all of the responsibilities? Or just the prize it comes with?
Do you want to be a lawyer or a doctor just because your high school results are so outstanding that those courses were open to you?

The games we play, the races we run, the choices we make are so often about satisfying other people’s expectations of us.
Winning those will only ever give us a fleeting moment of satisfaction.

Because we are not true to our real selves, it doesn’t make us happy, because whilst we work so hard on winning those, we neglect what we really want.

For some of us, the connection and time spent with our friends, children or family.
For others, to do meaningful as opposed to (outwardly) successful work.

What are you giving up when you run a race you don’t actually want to be in?
What price do you pay?

How can you start choosing your own game?

Those are some of the interesting questions that I regularly look at with my clients in my work as a therapist…

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