Playing to win

Hey everyone,

Feeling a pretty meaningful shift in my mentality recently. It sounds silly/simple/obvious to say out loud, but I'm finally realizing that playing to not lose is absolutely not the same thing as playing to win. Switched to a new jiu jitsu gym recently and a higher belt actually pointed it out to me — as a guard player I find myself becoming passive, always on the defensive, and instinctually assuming that my opponent is a few steps ahead of me even if I do have the opportunity to attack. I get satisfaction from retaining my control, but I don't reach for more. I make sure I'm not losing, but I definitely don't make sure I'm winning.

Most women in this community train some sort of martial art, but this idea of course goes far beyond jiu jitsu. On the road to any goal, you'll always hit a point where you've made it far enough. Not all the way, but enough. Whether you have a very specific summer body in mind, or a PR at the gym, or a milestone at's tempting to celebrate 70% of the way through. Many of us have a natural underdogness about us (is that a word?), and so it can be easy to celebrate when you've made it further than anyone thought you would. But 70% of a journey isn't a victory...we can enjoy the small wins, and still keep our eyes on the prize. I keep reminding myself that it's not enough to avoid defeat — I need to give myself permission to chase victory. 


Keeping my eyes on the prize, 

- Heather

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