Play the Long Game.

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Lose the battle but win the war.

Play the Long Game (idiom) 1: to plan and do things that will help you to be successful far into the future, rather than only thinking about the present or near future. Life is a marathon that requires playing a long game. Being successful in this game involves starting with the end in mind, knowing your why, and working on your plan. One of the most essential lessons from finishing multiple marathons is that your outcome is somewhat predictable. As the marathon chart below shows, a certain amount of minutes per mile must be run to finish at one’s intended finish time. We play the way we train; if you cannot do it during training, executing it on game day will be hard. When you play the long game, you plan your pace and not go too hard at the start.

The marathon race is an excellent metaphor for life. We all start simultaneously, but the finish time is always different. The finish time is determined by how much work one has put in during the training period. All things being equal, you would run at the pace you trained for. In life, Garbage in, garbage out, cause and effect. “If you work hard, what is hard will eventually work, but if you take shortcuts, you will be cut short.” As former boxing heavyweight champion of the world, Joe Frazier once quipped:

“You can map out a fight plan or a life plan, but when the action starts, it may not go the way you planned, and you’re down to your reflexes – that means your [preparation:]. That’s where your roadwork shows. If you cheated on that in the dark of the morning, well, you’re going to get found out now, under the bright lights.”

You will lose multiple battles when you play the long game, but you will eventually win the war. The war over oneself is lifelong; doing the work to conquer oneself and become a better version of oneself requires doggedness, persistence and the relentless pursuit of a worthwhile goal. When you play the long game, the temptation to take shortcuts and immediate gratification will always be there but one has to remember their WHY. It will be an uphill battle; naysayers and doubters will pop up, especially from people closest to you, but you have to keep showing up, betting on yourself, and never give in to the noise.

“When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself: the people I deal with today will be meddling, ungrateful, arrogant, dishonest, jealous and surly. They are like this because they can’t tell good from evil. But I have seen the beauty of good, and the ugliness of evil, and have recognized that the wrongdoer has a nature related to my own – not of the same blood and birth, but the same mind, and possessing a share of the divine. And so none of them can hurt me. No one can implicate me in ugliness. Nor can I feel angry at my relative, or hate him. We were born to work together like feet, hands and eyes, like the two rows of teeth, upper and lower. To obstruct each other is unnatural. To feel anger at someone, to turn your back on him: these are unnatural.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Playing the long game is a subjective and personal choice. It might involve focusing on your blog instead of posting on social media, having a fitness regimen instead of binge-watching Netflix every night, and reading a book instead of hanging out. At the core of playing the long game is doing what you consider right to achieve your worthwhile purpose. Life is a rollercoaster of ups and downs; you might put in all the work, effort, and training and still not get the desired result. But at least by showing up daily, you give yourself a fighting chance to succeed.


Daily Calm with Tamara Levitt – Concentration

Often, when we are trying to concentrate, something grabs our attention. It could be a thought or feeling, a noise or sensation. A distraction is anything that moves our attention away from our focus. The problem with tightening our attention and trying to block out distractions is that it causes a lot of stress and usually doesn’t work.

A better way to build concentration is to consciously notice and name each distraction before returning to the breath. With practice, we become more at ease with the way our attention naturally moves between the breath and various distractions. Instead of tensing up to maintain focus, try to notice the distraction, label it, and then come back to your task. In this way, we can build stable, relaxed, and flexible concentration.

Let them come, let them be, let them go.

Daily Jay with Jay Shetty – Stolen Time

Imagine that $86,400 was deposited into your bank account every morning, and every night, whatever you didn’t spend disappeared; what would you do?  What if someone stole $100 from the $86,400, would you use the remaining  $86,400 to try to recover that $100. Would you fixate on what you lost, or would you take advantage of what is left?

Every day, 86,400 seconds are deposited to your life account, and valuable time to be enjoyed is maximized. And yet when some of those seconds are stolen, think about how you react. Every day, people will do things that waste your time. The world will do things that waste your time. Should you try to chase what you’ve lost? Should you fixate on what you will never get back? Should you blow more time even upset or redirect energy and enthusiasm towards the time you still have? 

You don’t want to squander what you have left, no matter what is gone. There is a lot more time remaining to recalibrate. Be mindful of how you focus your attention and energy. Notice when a wasted moment could lead to a wasted hour and then nip that in the bud. Try to maintain your sense of perspective. Remember, a molehill doesn’t have to become a mountain.

You must live in the present on today’s deposits. Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness, and health. The clock is running.  -Marc Levy, If Only It Were True

Daily Trip with Jeff Warren – Dance Yourself Clean

Resistance shows up in many different ways in our lives, and a lot of this is as it should be. There are many scenarios and situations that we may want to resist. However, resistance may work against us, especially when we never examine it. It can limit us and prevent us from accessing perspectives and opportunities that might actually be fun and beneficial.


  • Quitting Social Media: How To Declutter Life & Discover Your True Self Again | Cal Newport

All the best in your quest to get better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion

Lifelong Learner | Entrepreneur | Digital Strategist at Reputiva LLC | Marathoner | Bibliophile -info@lanredahunsi.com | lanre.dahunsi@gmail.com

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