Life is Not a Contest

Since the death of Aretha Franklin a few weeks back, I, along with others I’m sure, have been listening to her great body of work.

One of my personal favourites is Think, from the Blues Brothers soundtrack. It’s fun and sassy. and there is one line in particular that sticks out in my mind as one of the truest line probably ever written:

“People walking round everyday playing games and taking scores; Tryna make other people lose their mind, well be careful you don’t lose yours”

Aretha manages to say quite succinctly and eloquently that, basically, other people are shit.

Some people are going around, mentally totting up your score against their own, as if life was game to be won. Which is stupid because life isn’t a game; it’s an existence – a spell on earth for you to experience. These people that act like it’s a game, and that they’re winning because, I don’t know, they went on holiday this year and you didn’t, they are the most toxic people you could ever meet.

Whenever you’re around them, they’l make you feel insecure, worthless, and maybe like a failure. And they probably won’t even realise they’re doing it.

There might even be people like this within your own family – the ones that always ask if you’ve got a partner, a job, a house, a kid, a grandkid, etc. as if life were a shopping list – mentally tallying up your score next to their own.

Personally, they’re the ones who make me feel exhausted and inferior, which is stupid because I’m just here, doing my thing, getting my writing out there, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. There’s no rule that says I can’t, yet some people don’t take me seriously, or don’t see it as something worth doing!

As previously stated people are shit and like to think better of themselves by making others feel worse.

In this kind of situation, it’s all about your self-preservation. hype yourself up if need be, but mostly, you need to withdraw yourself as soon as possible when you realise someone is being a points scorer. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.

Other humans will certainly test your patience – and although it may take a while, you need to cultivate those few individuals who have the same soul as you, who will be your cheerleader.

Pointscorers are drains. Cut them out of your life if you want to be happy and content. Your only competition should be with yourself. Improve on the person you were last year; show yourself that you can be successful; prove to yourself that you can do it!

Don’t let other people bring you down!