A Little Dose of Losing
I am not a sore loser; I just find any sport much more fun when my team wins. I don’t throw my tennis racket against the fence or kick volleyballs around the court after a lost match, but let’s face it… who likes losing? But tonight, after volleyball games both lost and won, I found the hard-hitting Unexpected Health in losing.
To lose something–whether it’s a game, your car keys, your mind–means to “have something taken away” (yes, I actually looked up the definition). But what if we thought of losing differently? What if what we had taken away was something we didn’t need anymore? I’m not talking about losing a loved one or any sort of tragic event…I would never make light of something so incredibly sad. What I mean by losing are those less heavy-hearted events that throw us into unnecessary emotional turmoil. As we are able to keep a level head, we are practicing health.
Let’s go back to my sportsmanship, which is how I came to discover the unexpected health insight. Tonight I went to open-gym volleyball. I love volleyball! And I have been playing for a very long time, so as you can imagine, I know what it feels like to be on a winning team, and I know what it feels like to be the capital “L'”…the losers. My team tonight had an interesting dynamic. We couldn’t quite connect as a team. We somehow managed to win a decent amount of games, but I never really felt like a winner. In fact, what I noticed was that the team that lost most games, had the strongest connection as a unit. This made me think about winning and losing. Having something taken away from us–losing–can be really healing. When we feel like we have lost control, lost our way, lost our sense of purpose, we are given an opportunity. When we lose, we can either think the worst, believing that we must have “loser” stamped on our forehead; or we meet the challenge to let go of what was taken away and prepare ourselves for what will be given to us. What a great challenge…in sports and in life.
So the next time you lose something, before the irritation kicks in, think about what unexpected health you might gain from your loss…maybe losing isn’t so bad after all. -Until tomorrow, Jaime
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