What makes a winner a winner?
The definition of winning has two parts, the first is achieving your objective; the second is beating others.
The average person's frustration of not winning, or the fear of losing, comes mostly from the second part. Nobody wants to be beaten by someone else. The mentality of why losing is so bad is deeply rooted in our mind during our upbringing. Which is especially true for Asian cultures. The interesting part is, most often our parents never told us the direct consequences of losing, other than getting slapped. When we were kids, we were told to never lose. What happens if you lose a game of soccer in primary school? Nothing. What if you win? Nothing happens either. It's probably because playing soccer is a zero-sum game, one team's gain inevitably becomes the other team's loss.
If you want to become a winner, the second definition is not what you need. A true winner is someone who has the victory in his heart, never getting discouraged by cosmetic losses that bring no intrinsic harm. Even when a crowd is yelling "FAILLLL!" at him, his passion remains burning. This person knows what he wants. The world today has too many tempting offers, way more than what's good for your mental health. Making one choice always come with various opportunity costs. Knowing who you are, what you truly want, only that will help you stand your ground when the earth crumbles beneath other people's feet. And beware, there are people out there who intentionally make you feel bad so they can feel better about themselves. Acting cocky is a common way employed by insecure people to hide their lack of confidence. Next time another jokester wants to pick on you, tell him to GO FUCK HIMSELF.
With a strong mind comes strong will of action. Saying things is not enough, doing things is necessary; having the knowledge is inadequate, knowing how to apply the knowledge is the winner's way. On your journey towards winning, you will run into vairous obstacles. One is called cowardice, it takes away your ability of doing what you should, and laughs at you. The other is idiocy, not knowing who you are and what you want, some shady figure that puts you on the wrong path in your life, and when you realize what you've done, it's too late. A third one is called sloth, it drains your energy, turning you into a powerless wimp. A fourth one is envy, it puts your eyes on what other people have, letting you forget what you want. And the other ones? Nah I don't even bother to mention them one by one.
Don't focus on the wordplay known as "failure", because there is no such thing. Even if you don't achieve your objective, the process of getting there is rewarding enough. With it comes experience. Without the so-called "failure" there can be no growth. Oh by the way, whenever you encounter somebody who's thinking in terms of failure, I advice you to keep your distance. Keep your intent strong in your head, vague through your words, and assertive through your actions, a balance that is mastered with experience. Remove all obstacles. If one of your best friend is messing up your chance of getting what you want, remain friend with him but don't bring him along to your conquest.
When we were young, our parents taught us, everything has a price.
The food you eat, clothes you wear cost you money. Driving a car costs you gasoline. Eating nothing, the price you pay is hunger and malnourishment. Eating too much, the price is obesity. In short, no matter what you do, you end up paying something.
If you expand the concept further, even the non-materialistic things come with their prices.
When we were kids, mother said: "You are such a good kid! Mommy love you!"
What we heard is: love is conditional. Being a good kid means being loved by your parents. It's equivalent to: the only way you can be loved by your parents is being a good kid.
At home, the elderly in our family said: "Study hard, attend a prestigious university. Then you'll be something."
It means, only by admitted into an elite university, you become special. Otherwise you are nobody.
In school, the teachers told us: "Study hard so you can find a good job. Only then you can live happily ever after."
So happiness comes with a job, and the price you pay for getting one is taking your time studying.
When we finally got a job, our boss commanded us: "Work slave! Work! If you work hard then you can get your salary. If you have money then you can get married and have kids."
What they are trying to say is, if you want to enjoy the life of a family man, you need to work like a mindless drone. The love of your soul mate has its price.
In the end, we finally realize that we've been had.
Even with degree and job, family, money, happiness and satisfaction won't always come along. What we seek have always eluded us. In our despair, we try harder. Some people work overtime to earn that extra money they believe will do the trick. Some people devote their whole life in a career, hoping one day they'll get a promotion and be content. But they are wrong. Some have worked to their last breathe, others keep seeking until they can't go on anymore. The modern man is a jaded man. Burdened by responsibilities oozing from every direction, barely standing on his own feet.
The fact they never perceived is, those things they seek are not conditional. Love is not conditional; happiness is not conditional; living a content life should've never been made conditional. You don't need reasons to love someone and be loved. People with job can feel they should be happy for having a job. But even people without a real job can enjoy life.
Happiness doesn't come from having a job, a family, wealth, or even the most basic requirements for a good life. Happiness is there as long as you want it, and find it among even the smallest pleasures in your life. Like taking a beer with your friends and telling some joke, or playing a song for the person you like most. Before, my parents always criticized our poor relatives for being uneducated and deprived of ambition. They lived in poverty but remained content nevertheless. Years passed, my parents don't point my relatives the fingers anymore. I guess even an university professor can learn a lot about life from an average laborer. This professor happens to be my mom.
It reminded me of a story I read: one American Harvard student and one Mexican fisherman were talking about life. The American said he would finish first in his class. He'll work on Wall Street, accumulate some wealth and fortune. Once the retirement is here, he'll buy a house on an island in the Caribbean, drinking all night long next to a bonfire, playing a banjo and surround himself with beautiful girls. The Mexican said: man, this is how I live my life every day!
Do you hear me? If you want to live a life in paradise, you don't have to live through hell to get there. Never.