Winning Isn’t Everything

Winning Isn’t Everything

Winning Isn’t Everything – are you losing when you think you’re winning?

by Dave Cottrell

“Winning isn’t everything.  It’s how you; play the game that counts.”   This is an old cliché that most people tune out when they hear it…….But it is true.

Go to any sales training seminar these days, and you will hear over and over again that you have to set goals; that you have to have a winning attitude.  You hear that winning is everything.  You need to concentrate completely on reaching your goal.

Nothing can be allowed to get in the way:

Winning isn't everything

A picture depicting the winning position for white in a game of pentago. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Not family.

Not friends.

Not sleep.

Not recreation.

Not health…

Give me a break! If you give up all these to reach your goal, in other words, to win, you won’t have much when you get there!

Winning is a moment in time, a point on the road of your life.  It’s one-dimensional.  In other words, it has no measurable substance. Winning exists for a split second, and then it is gone.  It’s over forever.

If you base your happiness in life on winning, you will have a very unhappy life.  Your life will be a long, miserable road with momentary blips of happiness that are very soon forgotten.

The other day, I was taking a break on the deck with our sweet little grand daughter, enjoying a beautiful, balmy, breezy day.  Our garden, just off the deck on the other side of a low fence is growing well, and it’s attracting a lot of birds.  Having been raised on a farm and having had a garden most of my life, I was astonished to discover something new.  There are birds visiting my garden that like beet greens at least as much as I do!

I could have been working on my articles and websites, or submitting ads, or wading through my email, or helping out affiliates… but I was sitting in the sun enjoying the little things in life, like the birds and the warmth, and my little grand daughter’s company. It was wonderful.

Life is full of opportunities to relax and enjoy little things. However, our industry teaches us to block out the little things so that we can concentrate on reaching our goals – on winning. What that means is that we are spending all of our time so that we can enjoy a very brief, infinitely fleeting moment: the tiny flash in the space – time continuum when we reach our goal.

Winning is what happens when you reach the end of the game. It is what happens when the ribbon breaks at the finish line. It is the moment the horn blows, the cheering dies down, and the stands start to empty. Everything is over.

Don’t get me wrong! I’m not against winning. In fact, I really enjoy winning. I like that all too brief feeling of elation when I’ve reached my goal – when I’ve won the game.

But it is the GAME I enjoy. I play the game with winning in mind, but I also play the game for the sheer FUN of it. Most of my time involves playing the game – not winning it. That comes at the end. I’m going to enjoy playing the game. I’m going to enjoy everything that comes along with the game:

My family.

My friends.

My sleep.

My recreation.

My health.

The little moments spent on the deck with my wife and kids…

The other day, I took a break with my grand daughter.

I relaxed in the sun and the summer breeze.

I was amazed by the variety of birds that live in this area.

I was amazed by how many things are brand new and wonderful for my grand daughter.

I was amazed that I am still learning things about gardening and the creatures that come to visit.

Finally, during that very enjoyable break, a new article for a blog took shape in my head… and I wasn’t even working on it at the time!

I could have spent that time working in my office, but I probably would not have written this article. Instead, I would have cranked out something very much like what I’m usually writing about, ironically, probably about how to win the game or what tools to use to win.

Life is too short and friends are too few to spend it for that dot on the time-line called winning. Cherish every moment you have. Pay attention to your family and friends. Read more of your email. Go for a walk. Lie in the sun. Sleep!!!

To play the game properly, you need to have a goal in mind, but the real enjoyment comes from playing the game. That is how MOST of your life is spent. Winning is great, but you can’t hold onto that moment when you win.

If you want to really enjoy your life (you only have one!), you need to enjoy the time in between setting a goal and reaching it. You will have a far better life AND you will be far more likely to reach your goal. You will be healthier, happier, and a REAL winner.

Dave Cottrell is the affiliate manager for  Find out more on

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