Life is like a game of rummy. You should have the right set of skills to win.

You may like a card in a rummy game and it may be your lucky number. But, you should discard the same if required; else it will become a liability. Similarly in life also, you should discard a skill and pick up a new and relevant skill when required.

In a game of rummy, you should guess the cards in others’ hands. So in life also you should know what skills others possess and your skills should be better than that of others.

In a game of rummy, you cannot say if you have the right cards without reference to what others have. So also in life, you have to evaluate your skills with reference to what others have.

In a game of rummy, you may pick up a card discarded by someone else. So in life also you may find a skill very relevant which may not be so for somebody else!

In a game of rummy you should quickly decide whether to continue or quit a round without loss of time. So in life also you should not waste time to reorganize yourself totally if required and start all over again!


Play to Win


There was a time in most of our lives when we had no fear-that feeling when we jumped from the jungle gym and slammed our little bodies to the ground. Perhaps it was when we went on our first roller coaster, or when we were in high school or college and felt that there was nothing we couldn’t do. No goal was unattainable. We were an unstoppable force that would think of something and then make it happen. Then, as time goes by, the world tells us more frequently that we can’t do what we want. The doubters laugh at our goals and try to persuade us from going after our dreams.

They say, “You’re crazy. It’s too hard. Why don’t you do this instead? You should play it safe.” They act as if dreams were meant for others but not people like us. They surround us with negative energy and try to instill their own fears and insecurities in us. We not only begin to know the word “fear,” we start to understand what it’s like to be fearful. With so many people telling us we can’t do something and so few telling us we can, it’s hard not to let fear into our lives. Unfortunately this is how many of us go through life.

Whether you are 20 or 50, many of us become so scared of losing what we have that we don’t go after what we truly want. We play it safe and hold on so tight to the status quo that we never experience what could be. We believe the doubters and don’t take chances that will move us one step towards our dreams. I call this “playing to lose.” We see this in sports all the time when a team has the lead. They start to think about how not to lose instead of how to win. They hold on so tight to their lead that they start playing safe and scared. You can see it in their energy and body language. As a result the other team takes chances, plays with no fear and eventually gains the momentum and wins.

To live a life filled with positive energy we must learn to repel the energy of fear. Whether it comes fro m within or from another person, we must overcome fear and adopt a “Play to Win” mindset. Playing to win requires a commitment to yourself that even if you fail, you will never give up and never let your goals and dreams die. Those who play to win know that success is not given to us. It is pursued with all the energy and sweat we can muster. Obstacles and struggles are part of life and only serve to make us appreciate our success. If everything came easy we wouldn’t know what it felt like to truly succeed. Obstacles are meant to be overcome. Fear is meant to be conquered. Success is meant to be achieved. They are all part of the game of life and the people who succeed play to win and never give up until the game is over.

– Jon
Originally at

The Indian captain did many things right to help us lift that cup. Psychiatrist Dr Harish Shetty tells you what you can learn from him

While you’re basking in the glory of India’s world cup victory, you may as well take some tips from M S Dhoni on how to stay on top of your game. Psychiatrist Dr Harish Shetty decodes the mantras that have made our captain among the greatest of all times.

Let criticism inspire you
During the presentation ceremony of the 20-20 World Cup, Dhoni looked at Ravi Shashtri and, with a genuine smile, said, “I remember you called us underdogs and so we have won the cup for you”. Here is a man who does not collapse under the weight of a comment from an important cricketer but works forward with gusto, logic and a renewed determination. When important people undermine or underestimate you, get in touch with your feelings of fear, dread, anger or sadness and convert these into greater resolve. As a kid, Sachin Tendulkar too would not rest till he had defeated his friends in a table tennis match after a loss at his old residence Sahitya Sahawas.

Move on
When India loses, Dhoni often publicly accepts the team’s shortfalls but does not dwell on them for long. During one loss, he said, “This match is over, let’s plan for the next”. Unlike captains of yesteryears, who would brood, ruminate and introspect too much, our reigning captain has mastered the art of leaving things behind. Fear and disappointment are not allowed to percolate his mind. Just focus on newer frontiers with a fresh pair of eyes and a refreshed mood. Do not be the victim of excessive critical appraisal from yourself or others. It may paralyse you.

Us, not I
On the day of victory, the World Cup was in every player’s hands, except Dhoni’s. A couple of years ago, Dhoni asked Anil Kumble to take the cup after a victory in a test series. His genuine affection for his team is visible and the bonding is strong. He has praise for all but neither did he mince words when Gambhir failed to make his 100 due to a bad shot. He is genuine, even blunt. He has publicly made statements such as, “Our middle order should perform” or “Sreeshanth should behave”.

Stay cool
Dhoni is cool during tense moments. No sledging, or rash words. It would be interesting to learn more about his self-talk. It probably involves thoughts such as ‘Calm down’, ‘Focus now’ or “Let me try something new’. The feeling of dread and fear is allowed to pass. He probably observes these emotions come and go on his mind screen. This thought process is visible on his face that remains childlike many a time during a crisis. So, when the chips are down, just observe your feelings as they come. If you find yourself fretting or yelling, you have been hijacked emotionally and will lose friends and battles. If not, creative responses will emerge.

Keep at it
MSD teased Ravi Shashtri by saying, “If we had lost, many questions — why Sreeshanth, why did I bat before Yuvraj — would have been asked”. His getting into the middle of a battle shows he loves challenges and does not bother with incessant advice from exgreats. Like Anil Kumble, who shared at his retirement that he ignored all criticism during his lean period and persisted, our captain also practices ‘dogged perseveration with risk-taking’. The Dhoni mantra is clear — persevere while down, take risks and obey your instincts.

Lastly but importantly, Dhoni feels and expresses his gratitude openly. After the win, he said, “I chose to come before and Gary backed me”. Thanking ‘Gary and Paddy’, and others significant to his performance as well as that of the team, comes naturally to him. Gratitude is a part of his personality.

Originally at

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