When I was a child, one day our teachers took us to a large sports complex for a running competition. Children from many schools were participating and the place was quite packed. My running speed was not the best but it was good enough to fancy any little chances I had. At the blow of the whistle, the race began with dozens of children charging forward. I was hit by some elbows in my chest and stopped right there to complain about the foul play to the referee. She agreed with me but in the mean time, everyone else had continued and had gone far into the track. The race couldn’t be stopped.
That was a very important lesson for me in the sense that this is exactly how life works. Life is unjust by nature and it continues along at its own pace. Everyone is framed in a certain set of parameters – some get it tougher than others but there is no other choice. The only way to get ahead is by fighting one’s own unique circumstances.
Success in any pursuit comes by leaving the blame habit even in case one is right. Blaming is directly related to losing control because when one complains about something or someone, it means that they see the change in circumstances in someone else’s hands.
As Jeff Olson said in his great book The Slight Edge,
Two similar people, one finds success and the other doesn’t. Why? Successful people take responsibility, even when they can justify with a valid excuse. Even when somebody has done something wrong and you’re right in blaming someone. Because as soon as you blame, you give up control. Unsuccessful people are constantly blaming something or someone else.
Some people might easily achieve the same results one desperately desires through a combination of factors but that is not important. The important thing is that whatever one wants, whether one wants it enough or not.
Each player who perceives the game within this framework is naturally the eventual winner. Reaching the end of one’s life with a list of hard earned successes is much better than ending it with a list of justified blames.