How to Win by Sometimes Losing

The path to greatness involves the act of winning battles along the way. These battles can present themselves clothed in many forms, but one thing is for sure: you’ll need to win a consecutive series of them. Amidst heated competition, our instincts become to attack what is keeping us from attaining what we desire, and destroy those who stand in our way. When on a consistent winning streak against the obstacles that are in your way, you’ll want to keep on going and keep on winning. However, in the context of winning against the same competition, the longer your competition goes without a win of their own, the lesser their desire to compete will be. If you are in a domain which has few competitors, say for instance a local basketball court at the park, then the lack of competition would mean the lack of your personal growth.

The growth you experience from competing against others can be either personal or professional, depending on the particularity of your surroundings. Those who achieve the top spot in their chosen path rely on competition to keep them sharp, and keep them on top. Without the competing forces clawing from below, the spot they hold means nothing and their growth begins to fade.

Let Them Win Some

With all that being said, competition is a good thing when you’re in control of a particular domain. Having your competition dwindle and fade will cause you to do the same if that fact goes unnoticed. In order to maintain healthy competition in life, it is necessary to let your competition win a selection of their battles. The battles that they win should not cause irreversible damage to you or your domain but they should work to increase your opponents’ morale to stay in the long game. As the game progresses, keep allowing their small victories to occur, while keeping your focus on the picture at large. Envision the battle as it plays out over hours, days, months, or years. Envision yourself improving with each one of their victories, as they serve to keep your competition around for longer, allowing you to continue feeding on their presence.

It must be said that in order for you to exercise this control, the environmental factors and difference in skill must be in your favor. If you are by fact weaker than your direct competitors, then that fact will start to become obvious with each one of their wins and your loses. Losing involves showing some sort of truth about the state of reality, and even though you may allow your competition to win, your weaknesses will begin to show. With these truths, your competition will begin to grow confidence that comes with realizing these weaknesses. You must be able to lose without showing your true weaknesses, only the ones that you choose to show. This is key to keeping your competition around but being in control of their fate.

Once you begin maintaining this sort of control over your competition, you will thereby control the whole domain you’re in. Your competition will begin to believe that the path to overall victory is in sight, while there being no hope.

A prime example of this concept is the tactics used by casino businesses. A perfect ratio for keeping gamblers in their seats while their losses climb exists. Trial and error will help you figure out how to keep your competition around long enough to benefit you. Take note of when your competitors’ motivation levels plummet and when its time to raise it in an effort to keep them in the game.

Book Recommendation: 

The Rape of the Mind: The Psychology of Thought Control, Menticide, and Brainwashing

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