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A Winner’s World

May 27, 2010

Photo credit: Brandon Fuller

I saw the above picture today and it got me thinking about the world we live in.

I think it’s a world that loves a winner and sweeps away the losers, or everyone else.

Of course, I’ve been both a winner and a loser, and in both cases, I starkly remember the difference in feeling. There’s an unmistakable feeling that comes with winning. Joy, exhilaration, satisfaction, all of the above. It’s an amazing rush to know that you rose above all others and made it to the top. Not second or third, but first.

On the other hand, losing brings other feelings. It’s nothing like winning at all. You go over your mistake(s) over and over again, figuring out what you did wrong, what cost you the chance to win. All the attention goes to the winner, unrightfully so. No matter that you may have put in just as much, if not more time and effort in preparation. Sometimes, jealously sets in. But mostly, the focus is on disappointment within. “Better luck next time, kid.”

Our society seems to celebrate winners, and give losers not much of a second glance. Winners are put on a pedestal, while losers are left way down below. Part of this may be from the way media frames its stories (especially in sports) or perhaps from an innate psychology of the human mind. Whatever it is, the sometimes minuscule difference that changes an outcome from win to lose is magnified.

But this doesn’t mean that I agree with the emerging emphasis of “everyone’s a winner.” There are winners and losers to most everything, and that’s a fact that can’t be changed. You can say that “everyone’s a winner,” but everyone knows that is not the case. The statement simply masks the truth.

Instead, there needs to be a change in the way winners and losers are perceived and treated. Winners shouldn’t be deemed the greatest successes, and losers shouldn’t be deemed failures. There must be a better medium that is more fair and deserving, for all parties involved.

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