The Invisible Scoreboard

The Invisible Scoreboard

Do you want to make an impact? Then listen up. 

I have a unique take on a common sports phrase. It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game. In sports, that’s true. But winning and losing matters, too. If it didn’t, we wouldn’t keep score.

We fired the invisible jury last week. This week: the invisible scoreboard. 

Here’s the take. The win and lose narrative often seeps into daily life. I have often heard people say they won an argument.

In sports, there are times when situations are clear cut win/lose, right/wrong. But more often, context matters. 

In relationships with ourselves and others, competition creates a power difference that destroys problem solving and creates distance.  Ever seen a picture of the guy who won an argument with his wife? He’s sleeping outside.

It’s easy to get hooked into the idea, especially if you have played sports all your life. 

Maybe you say you’re a competitive person. That may be true, but everyone is — that was a part of survival centuries ago. But it doesn’t mean you can’t change your perspective or suspend your game with yourself.

Here’s the thing — life can feel and be a game sometimes. But if you think it is all the time, your games or matches may feel like a blessing or a curse. 

Relationships are not games. We hate it when people play relationship games.

Ask yourself: Am I respectful? Do I listen to understand or refute? To understand the other perspective or look for holes? Minimize or take accountability?

Remind yourself that trying to win or lose arguments usually makes you feel worse and rarely solves problems. No one is keeping track of the arguments you have won or lost. The only scoreboard is in your own head. 

Mental fitness requires identifying the problem, and working to solve it together.