“It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness; that is life.”
How often do we get the question “what went wrong?’ and instead of discussing all our shortcomings & failings, or come up with all the excuses (reasonable & unreasonable), we shrugged our shoulders and said “Life.”
Not often. We get the question often but rarely answer “life.”
It is socially unacceptable these days to suggest you can work hard, and even work smartly, and you can still lose.
It is socially unacceptable these days to suggest you made no mistakes and you can still lose.
And, let me be clear, I am writing this as a guy who always looks at things that don’t work out, or I have ‘lost’ and point the finger at myself for what I missed or what I could have done or what I wish I had noticed/seen/ paid attention to.
But (let me be clear part ) … sometimes you can do everything right, make no life mistakes lose work, and lose.
Is it fair?
I don’t know.
I just know it is Life.
And it is kind of silly to not recognize this.
Now. I am not suggesting this becomes your go-to excuse or answer … I am simply suggesting that sometimes it is good to recognize that simply working hard (and smartly) or making no mistakes guarantees a win … and if you don’t win than ‘you didn’t work hard enough”, “you didn’t work smart enough” or “you must have made a mistake.”
I say this because we have created a culture, business and Life, in which if you don’t win (or lets say ‘improve your current status’) you have done something wrong. And that is crazy (to think that in every case).
Personally, I tend to like non winners who show up day in and day out.
I like the ones with no quit (even when they don’t win).
The ones who tend to be last to give up.
The ones who tend to be the last to leave.
The ones who tend to be the last to keep trying.
And, maybe most importantly, the ones who tend to be the last to hold on to integrity, sense of self, principled behavior and values.
I can teach & coach people to stop or what to hold on to and what to let go of. It is more difficult to teach someone to ‘go.’
All I know for sure is that the world is absolutely full of people who quit. They will come up with a variety of quite reasonable reasons (one is ‘change direction’ which is often a fancy schmancy term for ‘give up’), but suffice it to say … they quit.
Because they don’t want to be the last – they want to be first.
Look. Give me a team who doesn’t care if they win, but will never quit and I can guarantee you they will kick more ass in Life & in business than 99% of everyone else.
Regardless. Here is the deal (some Life truths).
Not everyone can finish first.
Not everyone who finishes first did it the best, with no mistakes or worked the hardest.
Not everyone who didn’t finish first made some mistake or didn’t work hard.
That is Life.
And that is Life everywhere.
Anyway. I think this may be one of the hardest lessons to learn … and to teach.
In general, we suck at teaching this lesson and struggle to even admit it is a Life truth.
What’s Next? Talk with others. Take action.
We are proud of our SOCIAL INTEREST GROUPS—WEEKLY PHONE CALLS to discuss, gain insights, build communities— and help solve some of the most difficult challenges the world has today. Calls are for Members Only (although you can join the first call for free). Not yet a member of The Good Men Project? Join below!
This post was previously published on Enlightened Conflict and is republished with permission of the author.
Photo courtesy Pixabay,.