“You can’t compete with me, I want you to win too.”
I have seen this saying floating around again lately and find it particularly powerful. This is the most powerful human mindset. Cooperative and compassionate.
Wallace D. Wattles (The Science Of Getting Rich) claimed it superior to get rich using creative energy as opposed to competitive energy. He acknowledged both were means to an end but wealth acquired through competition was unsustainable and unfulfilling. Success in the competitive realm, by its very nature, must come at the loss of another. The creative plane allows all ships to rise. It is fundamentally sustainable and allows one person to benefit many. I love this philosophy.
I have competed far more times than I can remember. I began young and was fortunate enough to experience being a collegiate student-athlete. After a particularly rough number of years following graduation, a return to competition was the best decision I could have made. Since then I have become a “master” in almost all sports. This does not imply I have mastered these sports. It is just a nice word for being old on registration forms. Youngsters get various titles like “teen” and “youth”. Beginners get to use the term “novice”. Once your age begins with a 4 your ass is now a MASTER!!! But I digress…
I don’t necessarily remember which competitions were victories. I remember some. I remember some bitter defeats as well. The experiences I recall most fondly are always about the people, the support, and the shared excitement. I remember being cheered for passionately by people I had just met moments before. Sharing purposeful effort and passion is an immediate and powerful bonding experience. These are the memories I cherish. It is not whether you win or lose. It is not how you played the game. It is just about the experience. Plain and simple.
I did not begin with this mindset. In younger years my competitive nature fomented cringe-worthy behavior. Smack talk run amok. Hard feelings and ill will against those who defeated me fair and square. Occasional disrespect and all manner of actions most regrettable. A fragile ego exposes its weakness through anger. I do cherish the lessons learned from those experiences gathered from when I thought winning was the real priority. They have shaped me into a wiser human. As with all valuable lessons, I just wished I learned it sooner.
Winning is deceitful allure.
Fleeting and unfulfilling. It feels good for a moment. I wish everyone could have that moment where they dig deep and get to stand on the top of the podium in victory. It really is invigorating. Then a new game begins.
The moment the experience becomes the win, we become undefeatable.
The process is where the memories are made.