What personal experience of defeat or loss has taught you a valuable life lesson?
Some youth sports and school activities are being designed so that "nobody loses". Is this a way to learn about facing challenges or competition in real life?
I've been defeated many times in life and now appreciate the strength that comes from getting up and trying again anyway. I believe that the "everyone's special" and "no one loses" thing is destroying kids - not helping them. They grow up thinking life is a cake walk and that they can muddle their way along and get rewarded anyway. Adult life becomes a rude awakening. Failure provides valuable lessons and quite honestly, I think it builds character. If you never have to try and fail and try again - how can you ever excel at anything? That's my take on it anyway.
While I get the need to build self-esteem, I think as a society we can still do that and challenge people simultaneously. In my sons school in elementary they used to do this kind of thing. Then, when they all went to middle school, the pattern suddenly stopped and you actually lost and it was competitive - not just sports, many things! A lot of the kids now are really struggling because of it and I feel bad for them. Like they don't have enough self-esteem issues to contend with at this age.
I think events in life should not be categorized as defeat or win, but as experience. From each experience we can learn something. I think, that also sports in which "no one loses" have a good teaching, as they teach kids, man, that you can play for the fun of playing, not only to win something.
I do believe in learning from mistakes or defeat. It will do great for future as I know how to handle such losses. It is just like when I first joined in the working world where my first day challenge is troubleshooting a fault that I never know about. Though it took me 3 days to solve the problem, I got to know the system inside out and from that day onwards, I handle it perfectly without a glitch.
I learned the value of life and how precious it is when my son was murdered. In our youth we believe that we will live forever but we all have an expiration date.
Oh my goodness! I'm sooo sorry for your loss! (I'm at a loss for words other than these trite phrases.) All the best to you in the future, loveofnight! Sending strength and determination your way...
That kind of loss falls into a whole new category, grief that nobody should have to endure. I don't know if there is any consolation for such a terrible loss.
I don't know how the "nobody loses" program works but in general you have to experience wins and losses in order to get a well-rounded lesson in life. When you lose, it makes you try harder and compete with your self to do better. It also builds character and humility. That is the philosophy I use in tai chi competitions. You are only as good as the practice and effort you put into it, not necessarily compared to anyone else.
Like ChristinS, I've been (severely) defeated many times in life. One specific thing I have learned from defeat: never trust your bosses or co-workers, no matter how friendly they seem. Another specific thing I have learned from defeat is that you can be defeated even if you are "in the right": through no fault of your own you can still be defeated. I credit my 100% German stubbornness for giving me the strength to pick myself up and learn from defeats and move on more intelligently, or at least move on :-).
Getting back to your question about sports: I've also learned that there is value in both activities in which one can fail and in those in which one cannot fail. Activities in which one is competing against oneself are those I favor to a win-win or win-loss activity, however. I think that "nobody loses" sports are just as necessary for kids as win-loss sports are. This is because there are "nobody loses" cases in real life, too, such as in making friends and in meeting personal work goals/plans on-the-job.
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