Win or Go Home

Rod Pickett
2 min readFeb 20

Winning is great, sure, but if you are really going to do something in life, the secret is learning how to lose. Nobody goes undefeated all the time. If you can pick up after a crushing defeat, and go on to win again, you are going to be a champion someday.

Wilma Rudolph

“Winning is everything.”

“Win at all costs.”

“Show me a good loser and I will show you a loser.”

We live in a culture that idolizes winning.

They don’t have parades for losers.

But winning and losing are not so easy to define.

One reason is that the game reflected on the scoreboard is not the only game being played.

We are aware of this when we watch preseason games in professional leagues.

Both teams are trying to win, but the coaches and general managers are more focused on building their regular season rosters.

But even in the “big game” there is always a bigger game being played.

The owners are competing for the long-term viability of the franchise.

The athletes are contending for productive and satisfying careers.

Everyone involved is trying to win at life.

Being a Super Bowl champion is a big plus, but there are more important championships at stake.

If this is true in the “big game,” it is even more true in individual contests.

If we fail to get accepted at the college of our choice, that doesn’t make us losers.

If we don’t get hired at the first place we apply, that doesn’t make us losers.

If our bid for a project doesn’t get chosen, that doesn’t make us losers.

Winning feels good, and losing feels terrible.

But losing often equips us better to win the ultimate game.

Besides, winning all the time is boring. There is no challenge.

If you are easily winning every contest, you are playing in the wrong league.

We were made to overcome challenges.

That’s how we grow and become stronger.

There are few things more satisfying than overcoming an obstacle that seemed insurmountable at first.

While we are facing challenges that we choose ourselves or challenges that life sends our way, let’s keep focused on winning the long game.

— Rod Pickett

Now available at Amazon: The Courageous Heart: Wisdom for Difficult Times in paperback and eBook.

Rod Pickett

Rod Pickett is a writer, pastor, teacher, photographer, real estate broker, certified personal trainer, consultant, woodworker, and life-long learner.