A dear friend and I have started sharing three positive affirmations about ourselves each day. We call it “The Game” and if you thought of a different game, yes, you lose. Anyways, we use the sentence structure: Name is ________. Nicole is getting better at kind boundaries. Nicole is playful. Nicole is able to show up and enjoy games without getting consumed by competition.
We reflected on this last one, well aware of the tendency to slip into competition with siblings over holiday game playing.
I offered games as a site of connection (instead of competition). That it’s definitely like meditation. Instead of coming back to the breath, come back to the fun of the game, as soon as you realize you’ve wandered.
He said, “That’s a helpful way to think about it. I think there are certain games my brothers and I play just to get that competitive rush, and that we’d otherwise find boring. And maybe that’s okay if it’s in small doses, but maybe it suggests that we should spend more time on (or find) other things that we tend to genuinely enjoy.”
“But there’s a way of performing competition without getting internally consumed. That way performed competition is still there, but light instead of bite. “
Anywho, all good points to themselves. But upon reflection, I found joy in a switch of terms. I’d misremembered my friend saying, “I’ll try to keep that in mind.” and I wanted to say, no no, it’s about keeping mind in that.
I’ll try to keep that in mind >> I’ll try to keep mind in that.
The element of mindfulness in the game play. Keeping mind in the thing that is present in front of you, instead of attempting to hold something, the idea of something, still in your mind. If you have your hands full, you can’t pick anything else up. If your mind is “full,” even a good thing like connection with others, you can’t be present to your brothers, the game, the connection you seek.
If you are bringing intention to “keeping mind in that,” then you are intending to stay in the present moment, to be there, to be one with the engagement and those engaging.
Originally published on 1/11/2018 on Nicole’s personal website.