December 1, 2013

How to win at life

I heard that the secret to life is balance. This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. If we are to be balanced, what's the the point of living? Balance is boring and leads to mediocrity. If you were born balanced and tend toward the middle, great. You probably have an important role in someone's life. You may have followed the path that society prescribed for you. You probably aren't rustling any feathers. That'll never be me...

I choose a different path. I live in extremes. I tend toward intense focus and devote myself to one thing until I am satisfied. There is nothing in the world more important than winning. Defeating others is not the key. Surpassing your own limitations is what winning is all about. The harder the task, the bigger the win.

I suggest aiming for big wins and miserable losses. You are given no choice but to push hard. Losses may destroy you, but they will definitely motivate you for the next attempt. If you still have emotions, repetitive losses may cause you to quit trying. There will be collateral damage if you don't discard your emotions.

Once you lose your humanity, though, you are on your way to success. There is no space for humanity when winning is everything. This is the secret to life. Only once you lose yourself can you take the prize.


  1. Surpassing what limitations is worth losing your humanity? Physical limitations? Intellectual limitations? Creative limitations? Read Faust, or Genesis, for that matter. I don't think you mean what you say. The only way that surpassing your limitations means anything is if you do it with your humanity intact. I think what you really mean is that sometimes you have to subordinate some emotions to your aspirations. That I can buy into. But not losing your humanity. That's too high a price.

  2. In war as in competition, humanity will get you killed.

  3. Great pic! Is that you? :p I don't know, this post seems depressing to me. For me, nothing is more important than one's humanity. Not money, not reputation, not winning. Without one's humanity, everything else would seem empty. Hope you find what you're looking for!

  4. This concept of humanity has changed for me this year as I've been exposed more and more to the third world. I define the third world in part by an excess of people fighting for survival. The joy and love (the humanity) that they share freely is something I've never seen in the first world. I sense that the cause is an appreciation of life.

    The purity of humans becomes tainted when life is too easy. I am suspicious of the first worlder's intentions. Helping, loving, and sharing often seem self-serving in the first world. For example, "If I do this for my kid, then they won't hassle me."

    The post is intended for a first world reader as humanity is different between the first and third world. Also, it is the beginning of a long discussion, it begs for debate.

  5. I think that regardless of whether the struggle is for survival in the third world or for success according to the traditional definition in the first world, the struggle itself can forge a kind of humility that intensifies our humanity. Like Jacob who matured through wrestling with the angel and asking it to bless him, or Elie Wiesel, who survived an experience of the Holocaust, struggle can actually elevate our humanity, not cause us to abandon it. Struggle acquaints us with our limitations, and therefore makes us aware of the grace that allows us to be alive. That awareness is the essence of humanity. Transcendence of any personal limitation without awareness of the grace of being alive is hollow, and awareness of the grace of being alive is a higher state of being than transcendence of any personal limitation without some appreciation of the grace involved in being alive.