January 3, 2013

Everybody Wins

I am maybe the least competitive person who has ever lived. Seriously. Sometimes when I watch college football, I think to myself "Can't both teams just get a trophy?" I hate the idea of anybody going home feeling like a loser.

This is much to the annoyance of friends when we attempt to play games together. I don't mind bending (i.e. breaking) the rules if someone needs an extra spin, a do-over or to be slipped a couple freebie hundreds from the Monopoly bank. That's just how I roll.

Just because I don't have a great competitive edge doesn't mean I don't want to do well. I just want everybody else to do well too.

Over the holiday break, I got to spend some time catching up with a few high school friends. Sometimes getting together with folks from the past can be stressful, especially if you feel like your life isn't exactly where you'd hoped it would be by now. Why are we so quick to judge ourselves (or each other) as losers based on a few arbitrary factoids?

If I've learned one thing in my 30 years, it's this: Life is not a contest. It's just not. And if you look at it like a contest, you are likely to feel like the loser. Because there's always somebody who has done more, met more people and been to more places. It's not about comparing ourselves to anybody else. It's about comparing the thoughts we have about ourselves to the thoughts God has about us. If they line up, we're good to go.

Maybe we should instead think about life the way I think about playing board games. Yes, there are some rules but you don't really have to stick to them. If someone needs an extra turn, why not give him one? If I were in charge, I'd give free do-overs for everybody as needed, including myself.