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It's not in whether you win or lose, but how you play the game - detach from winning

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posted on May, 25 2014 @ 05:14 AM
I am successful in a lot of areas of life (and not as successful in others), and I want to share with you one aspect of how that happens.

As in a few of my posts in the past, I am going to bring my focus to the realm of gaming because these days adults can get together in large groups and compete and develop similar relationships that one would see in a true free market / anarchist state (as in the government is controlled directly by the people and not by some outside oligarchs, and therefore fluid).

This kind of organization and freedom is a great environment to test different interactions out without the chance of something artificial mucking up the mixture, like a police officer or judge.

We are going to talk about Magic: The Gathering first, and then my business second. Magic is a game where people construct a deck out of thousands of different cards and compete at different levels, the highest offering hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes, and a modest few grand would be in the reach of the experienced player without a title at a Grand Prix.

Whenever I have done gaming, I have always focused on how to play, not on winning. This change in attitude is an important one, for it means that even when I was just beginning in Magic, I would see things that other people missed in the basic arena - and this got the attention of the experts and heroes in the area. This is what built friendships, not winning, but talking about the game, not getting powerful, but loving the game - that is what helps network -

To be able to have conversations with the founder, Richard Garfield, or others on his development team in person, or leading artists - this doesn't come from winning, this doesn't come from greed, this doesn't come from materialism or anything of the sort - this kind of success comes from letting go of wanting success - from detachment - it comes from loving the game for what it is and wanting to learn more about it.


Now we can move on to business. When I started my business in nuclear technology, and I met a lot of people, did I meet some of the most successful marketers and businessmen and scientists in the state because I was rich? Or because I was successful? Actually, no. More on how being poor is beneficial in a moment - It was because I was passionate and my business partner and I were very interested in how we could make a tabletop fusion reactor accessible for multiple uses.

The people who wanted to win or wanted money, they didn't know anything about tabletop fusion because they didn't care about the actual process (they honestly didn't know the science behind their own business), and they told us we couldn't do it - but we didn't listen (there was no reason to), and ultimately, those players don't matter anymore.


I just wanted to share with you that, in pretty much all cases, the people who care and play to play and discover how things work and enjoy what they do are going to end up successful, while those who play to win are soon going to be irrelevant and probably move on to their next failure. I explained above how come this is the way it is.

I'm sure there are going to be some cases where someone who wants money or power is in a position for that reason instead of because they love that job - but they are going to not only be harming themselves, but society, as it is like placing a corroded gear in the middle of machinery. They have corroded themselves with their own acid because they decided to live in fear rather than love - and this acid is dripping onto the rest of society, ruining it. No one benefits here.


There is one last thing that I wanted to mention before heading off, and I just thought of it - what if you are saying to yourself, well, I have to make compromises to get enough money to buy a house, and this and that - a legitimate critique - but listen here, because I am about to say something that could blow your mind.

Do you?

Detach. I recommend budgeting out to around $1,000 a month and figure out how to live on that comfortably for a single person. That will reduce stress. I only live on about that much myself - although I think a more realistic number would be $1500. Figure out what you need to live comfortably. Forget what society says. Compare your life to the middle-ages, not now - and look at the bounty you could have for $1500 and call it a win.

Once this is done and you feel safe and secure with the budget requiring less money to support (which is good, because getting money is stressful), then find a way to support yourself doing something you love, or find a way to do something you love and support yourself with a job that you can do without being too stressed out.

From these seeds come success, not from rotted apples. If you happen to have a big house and a lot of things requiring taxes and the like, great, sell everything and simplify - put the money in the bank or use it towards a project that you love.

You don't have to give it away or whatnot - just destroy the things that piss you off and take the rubble and use it to build other things that you like. And don't worry about losing too much - life exists - if you need help living comfortably on a low budget, just send me a P.M.


I live comfortably on around $1,000 a month, as a single person of course, and I spend my time doing what I love - tutoring, for example. It isn't out of the question. Fear holds us back. But if fear is holding you back, maybe you need to destroy some things you are attached to - the reason I say practice living comfortably on a low budget is so that you could write it down or something (after you have practiced it and worked out the kinks and are happy with it) and always remember it, so you never have to be afraid again - you have that low-budget happiness to go back to, see.

It's a useful thing to have in the pocket, because the only way to be successful is to be willing to lose everything at every turn - and this gives security and helps bring things into a clearer, more precise perspective.

Imagine not being stressed out about the prospect of losing something and how many more options that would open up for you to explore.

Besides, it's not really cheating to have a back-up plan for if you do lose everything.

I hope something in there helped someone out.
edit on 25amSun, 25 May 2014 05:49:12 -0500kbamkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)

edit on 25amSun, 25 May 2014 05:51:56 -0500kbamkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)

edit on 25amSun, 25 May 2014 05:52:18 -0500kbamkAmerica/Chicago by darkbake because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 25 2014 @ 05:41 AM
Happy to see nice threads like this. This are ancient wisdoms travelling through time, still some persons wont get whole picture and why is important not to focs on wining. The topic can go for whole pages and books. Personally I am sucessive Poker player for the same reasons, not for my math abilities or stone cold bluffing. More of this soon you will be able to read in my upcoming book - Flash Before the River - which I shamelesly promote on ATS
It realy does not mater what you do in life - Digging soil, hunting, or designing space rockets - If process enchances your mind, and you strat surfing on this weave, the aim looses its solidity, and only the movement stays vivid and true. Like making love, all is just a lick

posted on May, 25 2014 @ 06:08 AM
a reply to: darkbake
Darkbake, why not promote balance rather than rejection. Through balance you can attain and retain all you need rather than rejecting anything that causes discomfort. Many of our greatest experiences can first begin in a state of frustration and annoyance.

posted on May, 25 2014 @ 12:10 PM
a reply to: darkbake

I see why you have to detach to sleep with conditions like that. Good luck onward to El d'Orado. I suppose, be gentle.....

posted on May, 26 2014 @ 07:39 AM
I'm with you...but then I'm not. I agree completely that the inherent worth of a situation (gaming, business venture, or otherwise) is mostly to be found in the experience itself, not in the resulting outcome. Furthermore, due to lusting for a win, most people tend to overlook the experience itself, or at the very least significantly downplay its importance. I do not, however, believe that this is an issue created simply by wanting to win, nor do I think that detachment is the appropriate way of dealing with this issue. Effective? Perhaps, but ultimately detachment seems like a convenient way to bypass what I consider to be the real issues underlying the 'winning mindset'.

I find 'winning' and 'success' to be quite different, so I will address them separately. I consider the example of MTG to be measured by winning because being successful in tournaments would imply wins, whereas your business venture really doesn't have anything to do with winning, but rather deals with the concept of success; which I find to be far more subjective than the concept of winning.

The issue with people being in it to win it, as it were, really isn't about winning - it's about losing. Most people I've come across are terrible losers. Terrible, in this case, is implying taking a loss personally, being overtly discouraged by a loss, or considering their entire experience to have little if any value purely because of a loss. I could go on with the examples, but that's likely to result in me ranting about crazy sports fans and parents who can't even cope with a loss that isn't theirs...but I digress. There is something to be said for losing gracefully. I don't believe people are measured by their wins or successes in life, but rather by their failures; in how they chose to deal with those failures, what they were able to learn, and/or how they were able to grow due to said failure. Moving past that shortcoming, I find that there is quite a bit of use for the urge to win as well as the disappointment of losing.

For the sake of keeping things simple, I'll just insert myself into your MTG example. Were I to play at a competitive level, would I intend to win? Of course. Why? Simply put, I like to win - that's just a facet of my personality. In addition to that, if I am going to devote resources (time, energy, money...etc) to something then I anticipate some sort of return. What I would like to see as a return and what I may actually get as a return may be two totally different things. If I compete in a tournament, don't win a single match, and I only walk away with the experience itself - then so be it. If I didn't think that the experience itself would be worthwhile, regardless of winning, I most likely wouldn't have wasted my resources in the first place. Loss happens, and I'm perfectly fine with loss unless it is due to a direct fault of my own (e.g I decided to get drunk the night before the tournament, rearranged my deck, and ended up removing all of my mana cards, only to not realize this until mid play when I'm wondering where the heck my mana is), but then that becomes a personal issue rather an issue with losing.

Setting out to win is nothing more than setting a goal. People set goals for a reason - motivation. I do not mean to imply that a goal (in this case winning) is necessary in order to have motivation, but rather that for some people lusting after a win acts as a catalyst for extra drive and motivation that they may not have had were it not for that goal. I feel like detaching yourself from winning is almost akin to the saying "aim low and you'll never be disappointed" or perhaps in this case "aim nowhere"; whereas I personally prefer to aim high, achieve what I can, and eventually take a graceful fall - because loss is inevitable, we can't always win.


MTG as an example is taking a look at winning vs. losing on a singular level, where ignoring other outside factors your chance of winning is based solely on you. How do you feel about losing in group activities, where your performance/abilities aren't the only deciding factor? Can you still find that sense of total detachment? I know I can't. I played softball for 6 years back in grade school and I eventually quit due to the fact that our team always lost. I have no reservations in saying that I was without a doubt the best player on the team, and our losses were not related to my performance. The heart of the matter, however, is not that the team always lost, it's why the team always lost. The school I went to was highly competitive with sports when it came to male teams, but with the female teams it was always "just do your best, have fun, winning isn't important." What this mindset resulted in was a constant barrage of lack luster practices, horrible performance at games, and a general "yeah, whatever, who cares" attitude from almost everyone else on the team. Mean while, observing the male teams, I saw none of these detriments. I am not interested in examining the differences between the sexes, but rather I am pointing out the differences in coaching styles. The coach set the teams goals, that goal of "just having fun" turned into an expectation that radiated out not only to the players themselves but also their parents. So, at the end of the day there was no relative level of expectation to win from anyone involved and that resulted in a lack of drive for people to better themselves as players or even preform to their current "best" during games.

Loss on the other hand, while typically viewed as negative, can teach people many valuable things. You speak of doing something just for the experience and I agree with that, but many people have a hard time reading between the lines when it comes to life. Properly coping with loss, meaning that it isn't simply internalized or pissed and moaned over, includes taking inventory of the situation and deciding what there is, other than winning, that can be taken away from the situation. People who actually care about losing eventually have to develop this skill. Admittedly, not everyone learns this, but I'd be inclined to say a fair amount of people do.


So far as your business example goes, I think it's admirable that you have a passion for your work and you are certainly lucky to be able to profit at doing something that you love. You also mention networking more than once, so I will assume that you have relatively refined people skills. Further more, if you were out to produce a tabletop fusion reactor I also have to assume that are decently educated or exceptionally bright. Do you realize that these things do not apply to the average person? I am certainly not making excuses for the world as a whole, nor am I assuming that your journey through these successes of yours has been a breeze, but do you really have that high of a view of people in general to think that what you have done (not simply the detachment) is actually an obtainable way of living for the average person? If so, do you actually attribute your success that much to the detachment without putting weight on other factors? Lastly, in regards to the 'budget', do you realize how many people don't even make more than $1000 a month, or worse yet are unemployed?

I'm not knocking your way of life, I'd just simply like to point out that in my opinion it's not particularly realistic for most people.

posted on May, 26 2014 @ 04:07 PM
a reply to: Erytte

Erryte was so kind to explain why whis topic is hard o be "swallowed" by the common fella. Yet I think is worthy this things to be promoted - "screamed out" even in langulage hard understood by the people who mosly need the lesson. Why? Subconscious. While an uninterested person might close this thread after brief reading with mixed or negative feelings about the statement of the OP, the bare fact he/she read the ideas encrypted by symbols leads to subconscious digestion of the same ideas in some way. And however ths is not likely to bring instant enlightment right away, enough of this kind of subconscious food intake could raise you to the latter. That is how fairy tales work. And if you ask me, they are more strong weapon than any logical revolution or spiritual level that man can twist and execute.

stay cool, stay fairy,
gold and silver,

edit on 26-5-2014 by Egoismyname because: spelling

posted on May, 26 2014 @ 04:50 PM

originally posted by: subtopia
a reply to: darkbake
Darkbake, why not promote balance rather than rejection. Through balance you can attain and retain all you need rather than rejecting anything that causes discomfort. Many of our greatest experiences can first begin in a state of frustration and annoyance.

I tend to like the idea of balance, definitely. This is a good point. Thanks guys, I will review your comments in depth.

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