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a few weeks ago, the team i play soccer for lost in the preliminary final. we were favourites, yet we were defeated. so naturally, one might ask what happened.

conventional western society will look for every reason they can to explain the defeat. fingers will be pointed at coaches, players, and the culture but the truth is, it’s no one’s fault.

in any game that involves two teams in a finals series, there’s a 50% chance you’ll win, and a 50% chance you’ll lose. this fact is often forgotten because humans like to be in control. we like to feel we can predict the future. that’s why we bet on games, because it gives us this sense of control. but no matter what we do, we can never predict how any game, event, or how life in general is going to play out.

this feeling of control is exacerbated by the fact that we live in a world that glorifies achievements. a world that values winning above all else. we think that success can be emulated - that there’s a formula to “winning a championship”. but this is an illusion. you can’t emulate success because you can’t predict the future. there are things you can do that increase your likelihood of succeeding, but at the end of the day, you still only have a 50% chance of winning.

admittedly, i wasn’t distraught having lost in the preliminary final. i’ll give credit where credit is due - our opposition were the better team on the day. no one is to blame. nor is that the most important thing. in 20 year’s time, are any of us going to be looking back on that game thinking, “oh man, salisbury inter really should have won that! how different my life would have been if they did!” they won’t be saying that because winning isn’t what matters most.

achievements look good on your résumé, but it’s the connections that look better on your eulogy. it’s the connections and friendships you made along the way - the experiences you shared with those alongside you - that? that’s what you’ll remember in 20 year’s time.

so instead of trying to emulate success, what if we tried to emulate better connections? stronger friendships? what if, instead of focusing

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