How can you think like a winner when all you do is keep failing like a loser? How can you win, win, win no matter what when all you’ve experienced is lost, after lost, after lost? These questions have boggled my mind for some time now. It’s to the point that it has become almost all I think about. I’ve been reading and listening to countless stories, Instagram posts, motivational quotes and speeches from various athletes, entertainers, writers, entrepreneurs, influencers, movers and shakers, millionaires and billionaires that all claim the secret to success is to think like a winner and believe that you can win. I found they all have the same thing in common. It’s rare that they ever talk / write about, brag, post, or advise on how to think like a winner when all you’ve come to know how to be is a loser.
Where’s the secret ingredient that tells you how to have a winner’s mentality even when you’ve experienced nothing in your life remotely close to winning? When you have been engulfed in a never-ending game of “Loser Crush,” it’s hard to believe you’ll ever know what it tastes like to be a part of the #WinningTeam. After years have gone by of losing opportunities, one after another, it’s hard to keep the faith that your dreams will come true and hopefully produce for you a brighter, better future. It’s hard to believe that you will ever have that foretold “Winner’s Streak” of success appear out of thin air.
I can attest from experience that it’s hard to keep the faith when all hope appears lost. When other people, especially friends and family, are blessed with success and their lucky winning streak turns into their wildest dreams coming true, I openly rejoice in celebration. Although I may be rooting for their wins on the surface, I must admit that deep down inside, it hurts to see others winning without me–especially at the same dreams I have or once had. I am not jealous of their success in the least bit because I want things my own way and on my own terms, not theirs. However, I think it’s only human to be or feel a sinking ship of “Bummer Thunder” when you see butterflies flying around and rainbows shining down on everyone else’s lawns while you can’t seem to even catch a break from the gloomy clouds and rainfalls coming down on your tall grass of weeds and wilting piles of plants.
Social media doesn’t help either! When I scroll through seemingly picturesque photos and videos of beautiful, exciting people being blessed to live out their dreams, traveling the world and turning up at the hottest parties around the globe, I look around at my pathetic little life and it makes me wonder what it is that I am doing wrong. What kind of bad karma did I carry into adulthood from my childhood? Was I really that bad of a child that I don’t get to achieve the same adult success as others? Did I really make one too many poor choices in my short life that I don’t get a “do-over” of happiness, success and the satisfaction that comes with those glories?
I’d like to think that life doesn’t work out that way. While I may had been young in age and mind, I’d like to think that I made the best of what was given to me with the knowledge, access, responsibility, tools and education I had at the time. So, maybe it’s just a simple thing as some people are just more luckier than others.
Does God have favorites that he chooses to bless and make their dreams come true over others?
God doesn’t have favorites. He loves us all because we are made in the image and likeness of him. People say to make your dreams come true it’s all about believing in yourself, staying determined and persistent in reaching your goals. Yet, I question the validity of that statement when the very same persistence and drive they refer to turns into years of doing so with little to no victory. So, how can anyone possibly stay motivated, positive, determined and more importantly, confident when faced with so much adversity? Those same people reply, “Work smarter not harder” and “Hard work pays off.” Yet, here I go playing devil’s advocate again when I find those very two statements appear to be an oxymoron of the very essence of what appears to be the formula for working success. If hard work pays off, then why be told to work smarter not harder?
If you think about it from this loser’s perspective, the smart thing to do is to work hard at achieving your dreams because the ultimate, (hopeful) end goal is that your hard work will eventually pay off. However, it still feels counterproductive to believe that you can be all that you desire to be when you can’t see any evidence that your hard work is actually paying off.
There’s a tale I read that talks about this very thing. The story goes a little something like this: “…Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence.” (Luke 11:5-8 NLT)
The moral of this story is that if you keep knocking on the door long enough, someone is bound to eventually get so sick and tired of you knocking, they’ll eventually grant you whatever it is you desire. Jesus called this lesson “Effective Prayer.” He teaches in Matthew 7:7-8 NLT, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”
I, personally, have yet to receive my loaves of bread of success that I asked for and have been dreaming about since I was a child. Yet, I still keep knocking. Call it insanity. Call it idiotic. Call me crazy for still standing here knocking on the door to my future imaginative success. Trust me, you won’t be the first. Yet, in part, I still digress. Although I may can’t see the door opening, there’s something in my heart that really wishes it will. She’s called hope. There, that little girl inside me is still crossing her fingers and dreaming that one day her time will come. I may not know when, nor do I know how long it’ll take for the doors to be opened, but she believes that eventually God will get tired of me begging and pleading about it, so much so, that he’ll have mercy on me and will finally see it through…
(Thank God for that little girl inside me who still has faith and hasn’t been tainted by the realities of this dreamless society.)
As always, I pray that my truthful and honest writings be a blessing to somebody. Know that you’re not alone. It may seem like you’re standing on that ledge / doorstep all by your lonesome, but know that you are not alone. It may seem tough, but like me, try your best to hold on a little longer and keep the faith. Eventually, our prayers will be answered.