Learning to Lose

Learning to Lose


(image courtesy of my daughter: thanks kiddo!)

There are some things that come easy to us. It may be a task, a sport, a relationship, a job that we are either naturally gifted at, or has just gone well for us. Nothing about this was particularly hard or required a lot from us, but we had success.

The success can lull us into thinking that if we continue the same level of effort, the same level of accomplishment will be ours. As if success is a simple machine and as long as we keep feeding it the same parts, the product just pops out the other side.

Something happens.

The other team wins.

Our relationship fails.

We get fired.

We lose.

The loss hits us hard and we scramble to figure out why.

We blame ourselves. Sometimes we blame others.

We struggle and get back up.

We play more games, and don’t always win.

We meet more people, and don’t always find the one.

We apply for more jobs, and they don’t call us or they pick someone else.

The old stuff that made us a success is no longer enough.


We train harder.

We work on our stuff.

We refine our skills.

After some time passes, we begin to win again.

We become better players.

We develop deeper relationships.

We discover better careers.

Learning to lose reminded us that what was good enough for yesterday won’t get you through tomorrow. Success can get you pretty far, but learning to lose challenges you to become great.