Did you even know you were in one?…
If you’re unhappy or unfulfilled anywhere in your life it boils down to the simple fact that you are playing the wrong games.
Did you even know you were doing so?
Once we understand this premise we can get started on your transformation.
What Do We Mean By Games?
The games we play are not limited to our Zog sports intramural flag football team on Saturdays at Riverbank State Park. They are ongoing, all day, every day. They are the set of rules in life that we hold ourselves accountable to.
Some examples of games you might be participating in are: trying to get your boss’s validation, pleasing your family members, living up to the expectations of your friends, and avoiding negative commentary from your peer group.
The key you must realize before any changes can occur is that your participation in all of these games is completely voluntary.
One example in my life was a game related to drinking (no, not turbo cups).
I haven’t had a drink in 15 months (hard to believe, I know). I don’t have anything against it, I’ve had a lot of great times drinking. It just wasn’t serving me anymore.
Many times when I was drinking I really didn’t even want to be, it was just a habit. In certain settings at certain times it was just what I had trained myself to do. I didn’t know any different.
But there were also many times when I was pressured to.
“Oh c’mon,” “just have one with me,” “it’s so-and-so’s birthday,” “you’re on vacation,” “stop trying to be a goody,” “don’t be a p*#%y”.
These sayings held power over me because I was participating in the game of trying to avoid negative commentary. I wanted to avoid it. So I’d have a drink.
It took me some time to choose to not play that one anymore. How it finally came to pass was a progression, but for now what’s relevant is that it doesn’t really matter anymore how loudly somebody entices me because the rules of that game no longer apply. I now play a new one: I’ll have one when I feel like it.
It’s Our Call
Some of the games we play may feel like fixed elements of the universe but in reality every single one is a choice.
Like keeping your kid fed. It sure seems like that job is a physical law, like gravity but it’s not. It might be a non-negotiable for you but it’s a choice.
You first assignment is to take mental stock of all the games you are playing in your life
As you go down the list ask yourself: which ones are non-negotiable, which ones would you rather not be playing, which ones are downright no fun anymore.
And which new ones would you like to start? That last one should make your hair stand up.
As you embark on your transformation you will have to continue playing some games in the short term, like showing up for work and there are others that you could drop immediately without any real negative consequences (like keeping up with the Jones’s) if only it weren’t for that negative commentary thing that’s controlling you.
But don’t worry, we’ll overcome that
I’m already offering you a congratulations because you’ve just made the first step in your transformation - you’ve named and recognized your choices.
The ultimate goal we are going for is to turn all of the games you play into conscious decisions. Not just the prevailing circumstances from going with the flow for so many years in a row.
The transformation we seek lies in the answer to the question, ‘what games do I want to be playing’?
And that’s exactly where we’re headed. Next up we’ll talk about how to start gaining the leverage you need to begin calling more of the shots. Tune in next week.
Pretty cool so far, right? I definitely think so.
Right now I’m gauging a list of people who get as energized by this idea as much as I do. I put a signup together below where you can throw your name down if that’s you.
This would be a great way to let me know you dig it so far and want to see us keep peeling back the ‘ole onion. The signup will add you to the newsletter if you’re not already a subscriber.
As we continue down this rabbit hole via the weekly newsletter I may reach out to get some feedback about what direction we could go and what else I can make for you. Maybe a book, maybe a workshop, maybe a GIF of me eating a slice of pie, whatever it is we’ll figure it out together.
Alrighty? Cool. We’ll see you next week…or sooner. Until then, may the force be with you.