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How Do You Play The Game?



 Recently, I made a couple of blunders that I wish I had not made. In dealing with them, I could have ignored them; pretending that they didn’t happen and hoping that they would go away, or, I could take responsibility. Being an adult, I pleaded a momentary lapse of reasoning. Seriously, it is all about taking responsibility, without excuses and that is very hard on the ego. (My wife wants to know what I did. Did I lose all the money at the casino? It is nothing like that, or even close, it is all benign stuff. My purpose is for the reader to recall an “oops” in their life to relate to.)


All that I really had to do was to think it through before I went forward with what became an embarrassing experience. It was only obvious, after the fact, that what I had done was to follow an ill-advised plan. I was not aware, beyond my impulsivity, of any consequences of my actions. Afterwards, it was too late. No “oops button”, to push for a reset.


When it comes to gaming, there is no other way to enter that particular reality, than to enter aware and responsible. There can be a thousand excuses why you lose and one reason why you win. You can pretend any story that fits what you want to believe or you can move forward with your evolution, taking responsibility for your actions.


There are many resources for gaming, books, articles, authors, teachers and workshops promoting ways of improving the player’s game. Sometimes I wonder that it is just so much dribble, including my own stuff. Really, is the game all that complicated? Does a person need all the stuff out there to enjoy a game? No!


So why go through all of this? Why promote a better way? It is a learning process for me. The search is as fun as is the trill of playing the game. Through self-examination of my thoughts and experiences I intend to come out the other end a better person. It is not so much that I feel that I am clever, that I have it figured out. I do believe that we journey together and find people who like to play at the same “games”. (like-minded) Perhaps sharing what I have discovered may be of benefit to others, but mostly it is a benefit to myself, as I acknowledge my mistakes and assimilate what I have learned. It reminds me of a procedure I used in my classroom with the kids. At the end of the day, I would have them spend ten minutes writing down what they learned for the day. Repetition and acknowledgement locks in the experience. When there is no one else to observe you, observe yourself.


Playing cards and dice is not all that complicated. It is enjoyable for some to make up a need to find a solution for the puzzle. Sometimes I wonder does the enigma exist only for the purpose of having an enigma? Overcoming the odds is just a slippery tomato seed. Do we really need to find a way to pick it up? “Just don’t squeeze so hard.” Ah, a strategy now to play the tomato seed game.


I know that I am a better player because of how I have directed my actions to learn the game. I know that my intention to figure it all out has provided me with many tools. What I am coming to see is that where I am gaining the most knowledge is recognizing mistakes, accepting mistakes, taking responsibly for those mistakes and then moving on. Persevering over the loss of anything is to live in the past. It engages negative emotion and it is a lower energy experience. Stuart Wilde would say that to persevere over anything is a “tribal paradigm”.


Stopping myself from engaging in a different story, as a guilty “little boy” who wants to write a pretend tale to keep himself out of trouble, is the challenge. However, the benefit is great when I do own up to the reality. The shift is huge when steeping aside from negative emotion and taking responsibility. I am coming to see that responsibility is not the critter I once thought it to be. It is not something that I do for an effect outside of me. It is something that I do to affect me on the inside.


After all the years of playing and studying the game, I still lose. I know that it is not because I have not figured out how to win. I know how to win. I know it is because it is still a part of how I play the game.


Copyright © 2006

 Michael "The Professor" Vernon @ Playing 4 Keeps.com


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© All Rights Reserved, Michael Vernon, Author/Gaming Instructor, www.playing4keeps.com


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