The surest way to get something is to not want it.

I’m fully convinced that this is true.

In order to illustrate this issue let me give an example.  Friday night I was playing online poker.  A tournament window popped up about to start.  I had forgotten I had registered for this tournament since I had registered for it an hour earlier, when I was more alert.  I was no longer as alert as I had been and the tournament window popping up was a bummer.  Why?  I had just been getting ready to go to bed.  I wanted to go to bed.  It was 12:30am, I was tired, and I wanted to sleep.  My next day’s activities included driving 2 hours to Aurora’s birthday party, driving home, and then a poker surprise party for one of the husband’s in the homeschooling circle.

I actually didn’t WANT to play, but it was a good chunk of my Frequent Player Points (500 to be precise, which I earned over about two weeks or so playing online), and I didn’t want to just blow them off.  I played the tournament.


I, along with three others in the tournament, qualify for the seat.  It was a satellite tournament, which means the winners from the satellite tournament earn a registration in a bigger tournament.  The bigger tournament wasn’t until Sunday, but the point is that I didn’t even want to start the tournament because I wanted to go to sleep.  My wish at the time wasn’t "I wish to win this tournament" it was "I wish I could go to bed."  And what’d I get?  I (and three others) won the tournament.

It was a pretty big seat, too.   I unregistered from the next tournament, and the entry fee was deposited into my account balance on that poker site.  It represented about a 30% increase in my bankroll.

I believe a factor in winning this tournament was because I wasn’t invested in the outcome, and I could look at the poker decisions I was making entirely on their own.  I didn’t think "if I’m wrong when I raise this, I’ll lose and I won’t get the $$ at the end of the tournament!"  I was thinking, "Is raising this a good poker decision?"  I wasn’t self-destructive, TRYING to lose.  But I was able to put the tournament results on the back burner and make good, smart poker choices.

One of the reasons I love poker is that it is such a microcosm of life.  Your immediate future is completely determined by the turn of a card, but in the long run and with good decisions, your long-term future is yours to control and determine.


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