have you noticed how happy a dog with a bone is? it's not the promise of hunger eradication that enamors it, there's something deeper at play here.
my Doberman barely spent time playing with it, she would just promptly go bury it. her triumphant gait post this accomplishment spoke volumes. my Rottweiler on the other hand wouldn't be caught dead without it, gnawing away at it all day long, worried silly that she'd take it away and bury it!
got a bone to pick?
it's amusing how even sedate and depressed individuals bounce into a state of readiness to battle when they find a bone to pick with someone. no kidding, i can't help but laugh when i observe this phenomenon in the wild.
by wild, i mean society of course. we're living in a world enraged by outrage so we're all walking around on eggshells worried of offending others. which eventually results in dulling your own shine so as to not blind others with one's own resplendent brilliance.
in such an environment, it's only a matter of time before you either offend or get offended by someone and something far more frivolous than worthy of your time energy and attention.
but here's where this gets interesting, because you'll soon find the righteous anger and ensuing aggressive action it invokes makes you feel like a million bucks. and that's worth everything you're throwing at it and more. all you really needed was a bone to play with.
play with your goals
Love me two time, girl
One for tomorrow
One just for today
Love me two times, I'm goin' away
Jim Morrison, The Doors
we're conditioned over years, to work towards long term goals and as a consequence forget to play with short term games. how might we play with our today while working for our tomorrow?
yes, i'm casually interchanging the word game for goal, as should you. that is, if you want to play with your goals like a dog plays with it's bone.
the size of the bone is not proportional to the attention showered on it by the dog. regardless of the goal at hand, the obsessive devotion towards it is the key to unlocking deep play.
it doesn't take much time, energy or attention to play. it just takes everything! in the intensity of the moment you'll think of nothing else but the game you're playing, the goal you're chasing, the bone you're gnawing. do you dare to give it your all?
share the game
at some point you'll find the game boring and you'll just give up to find something else to play with. but what if you could find someone else to play the same game with?
nature's serendipity might send another dog your way. one that wants to take away your bone so you now have an antagonistic game to play. it takes a great enemy to unlock your highest potential. the game that was beginning to bore you, now brings to the surface depths you never knew existed within.
or you might find yourself accosted by a dog that just wants to tease and taunt you by snatching your bone away. maybe the two of you will play a game of tug with it. maybe you have to now hunt for a buried bone like a pirate's treasure chest.
whether you enjoy playing rough or prefer it easy, a game shared is a game enriched. you might wanna think of how you might share your grand goals with others so everyone can benefit together, whether you're chasing fun in the moment or fortune at the end of the rainbow.
dig up that bone
as grownups we're sometimes deadbeat, sometimes dead meat and often dead on our feet.
one reason is they've forgotten where they buried their favorite bone. we've all grown up playing many games but there's always one that grabbed our attention more than others. many dreams are woven around this game. but memories fade and dreams are buried alive.
dig it up with all the enthusiasm you can muster! there's no power in the universe that can prevent you from playing with that bone. if there is such an entity, it is you. you are you own arch enemy. maybe this is the challenge you were looking for that, one that'll bring you back to life.
for grownups dreams are less desirous and more fearsome. one reason why is the fear that chasing them will with into an all consuming obsession. a fear that chasing down that road will result in social ostracizing if the dream is not achieved. fear not for minimum viable play is the way, so there's no need to drop everything and chase that bone.
say no to all else
many people struggle with saying no to people and events they don't want to engage in. yet reluctantly play along without putting up much of a fight.
now with the proliferation of social media and entertainment on every device, at arm's length anytime you wish it, you're gonna find it even harder to reject distractions.
rather than fight distractions, make love to your one obsession. focusing your time, energy and attention on the bone of choice saves you from being scattered by modern life's myriad distractions.
The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.
this is your life, your game. play with it as you will. chase that bone. grab at it. gnaw it like your life depends on it. for it does. you might wanna realise this now than on your death bed.