are YOU in the game?
get in the game! no, i’m not encouraging prostitution. nor am i discouraging it. if you can sell your mind, you can sell your body. why, you can even sell your soul to the devil, i hear. if you don’t know what i’m talking about, don’t mind me.
let’s get back to being in the game. being involved. bringing your A-game. being mindful. being in the moment. etc. here’s how to be an A-game player!
what’s on my mind? i’m sure you’d like to know. you wouldn’t be reading this if you didn’t. and that’s the foremost aspect of being in the game. knowing what you’re thinking. knowing how you’re feeling.
most times, we’re unaware of our true emotions and we’re incapable of thinking through to discover the reasoning behind it. this can be developed with what i like to call ODie there are many other systems that may offer more structure and credibility, but i built ODie (observe and document) as a simple tool to play with. the name is playful and even if i fail to follow through on steps 1-4, it has a binary fallback. which is why it’s named thus - observe and document.
whatever thoughts and feelings go through your mind and heart, just observe it and document it. preferably using physical implements such as pen and paper. digital tablet with stylus works as well. there’s a level of tactile involvement that typing just does not provide.
once you start to play this game of observe and document with everything going on inside you, without judgement, you’ll find yourself becoming more aware of who you really are. initially in hindsight. but the more you play, the more real-time the awareness becomes.
ps. if you’re wondering what the 1, 2, 3, 4 in the illustration are, lemme know. we can experiment together.
whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, it’s rare for people to speak their mind. for one, you may not be aware of what you really think. secondly, it may reveal the real you that prefers to be hidden. third, you’re not equipped to deal with repercussions of expression.
nonetheless, the more disconnected your thought and speech, the less fulfilled you feel as a player in a team. look deeper and you’ll realise it’s not just applicable to the team you play with but also family you live with.
tribal families worked and played together so there was ample opportunity to express honestly. traditional families used dinner time as the space within which to communicate the thoughts and feelings each member experienced through the day.
modern families are largely dysfunctional as there is no space in which to express. the forced dinner experience has largely lost it’s meaning since physical proximity alone is not enough to guarantee conversation let alone communication. vacations are also not engaging enough as a group activity as disparity grows between child and adult.
here’s where ODie jumps in to the rescue. use the documentation you’ve collected and craft a letter to your team mates, your family members, colleagues or your partner and express yourself as best as you can. it’s your choice if you wish to play within social norms or colour outside the lines. you’ll soon find your own balance.
if you’re at a loss of where to start, try the three most important words you can ever say.
it’s the thought that counts. i’ve heard this all my life but never believed it. sure, that’s where it all begins. thought. but as we’ve seen in the first section, it takes a lot to even know what you’re thinking. if you think you’re clear of thought, being able to express it is yet another challenge. and now comes the final test. can you back what you thought, what you said with action?
don’t be too hard on yourself with this one. our entire education system revolves around just proving capability through theoretical tests, not practical action. in the real works however, actions speak louder than words. now that’s a maxim, i’ll stand behind.
if you think or feel a certain way and finally summon the courage to express the same to someone, the action that follows is what cements the cycle and makes you feel fulfilled and enriched as a man of character, as a player of worth.
we’ve drifted from being accountable for our actions and often hide behind carefully crafted words designed to diplomatically stay aloof. this isn’t a moral callout. far from it, i’m only concerned with your own fragmentation as a strong, united individual.
when your thoughts, speech and deeds are in harmony, you’re the strongest and best you can ever be. and that means you’re the kind of player i want on my team. so yes, i’m doing this for myself. life is a multiplayer game. everything i do for myself is also for you and everything we do for each other is for the game.
remember children always express what they think and feel without hesitation, and act on that immediately. can you be this totally committed? are you 100% in the game? let’s play!