June 23, 2011

Learning to play nice

This is by no means my proudest moment. In fact it might actually be one of my most embarrassing - in life and in blog. Naturally, I'm going to share it with you.

Don't be fooled though, this isn't one of those haha-i'm-so-embarrassed-about-this-quirky-(or drunk)-stupid-thing-i-did-haha moments. It's more of an i'm-an-adult-and-i-can't-believe-i-just-acted-like-that-in-front-of-my-peers moment.

I play softball on a work league [which is pretty much like office dating because the consequences can be rather unpleasant if things go wrong*] and it's a lot of fun because my work friends are just plain awesome & I actually don't fully suck at it. Unfortunately, I'm really competitive. Like really, really, really competitive. It's affected me my whole life & I've never really learned how to deal with it...possibly because I've semi-avoided dealing with it hoping that I'd just grow out of it.

So we had a softball game the other day. We lost. I was pissed. Here's why:

  1. The other team made a couple of shit calls which resulted in way more runs than they deserved.
  2. My team was overly confident because we went into this game with a 4-0 winning streak.
  3. Halfway through the game, they were still overly confident even though it was obvious that this team could hold their own & continued to hand them runs & opportunities to get us out.
  4. Just the fact that I was letting this shit bother me made this a vicious fucking circle.
I didn't have a full-out tantrum on the diamond - that's not very becoming of a princess - however I'm sure you could tell my attitude had gotten pretty rotten with the glares, cussing (not too loudly) and I may or may not have tossed my glove one time.

I don't know how obvious it was to the other team while sitting on the bench or being in the outfield, however I know how I felt - like a frustrated douchebag. But a frustrated douchebag that I could not for the life of me control. Now, I wasn't the only one that was pissed and showed it, but by then I had tuned out my team mates so I couldn't really tell you exactly how they acted.

Don't worry, I still did the 'good game' handshake with the other team, but definitely called my mom right after that. MY MOM! I'm 24 years old in case I haven't mentioned. My mom didn't even understand what I was talking about at first (I may have been putting a lot of effort into not sobbing) and once she got it she was like, "Oh! I thought you lost something valuable, like your rings [again]!" She told me to go home, relax & suck it up because IT'S JUST A FREAKIN' SOFTBALL GAME!!

Guess what...I know it's just a game. What I don't know is how to not internalize a loss of any kind. This is my perception of me losing:

Losing > Failing > Not Good Enough > Incompetent > Inadequate

I'm very aware of how that sounds - dumb. But I like to put 110% into what I do & if I'm not completely successful then, at least I know I did my best. [cue Dane Cook] But with so much out of my control - aka 2 entire teams worth of people - I just can't handle it.

At work yesterday I had reason to suspect that things may have been said by the other team so I manned up - me admitting I was wrong? umm yes - and apologized to the other team's captain for what was likely the most douchebag-ish attitude they've seen on the diamond. We're cool, and of course I asked her to pass my apology on to the rest of the team because there's no way I was letting ME admitting I was wrong go unnoticed.

So like I said - I'm embarrassed. But I don't really know how to control myself. Should I stop even trying to play team-type sports/games? Should I keep playing & work on how I handle these things? 
What do you guys think?!?


  1. Never quit! Quitting would be like admitting defeat to your competitive side... which would not go over well with your competitive side.... but then you'd be competitive with your competitive side... and that would be... uh... now my head hurts.

    Seriously though, if you enjoy playing, try working on it while playing. Since it's softball, if you can, try a drink or two before the game to take the edge off.

    Signed: The Anonymous El Puerco

  2. I completely understand. I'm competitive about everything from games, to work assignments, to cooking a dish for a party. I've found it helps to step away for a few minutes. If something's not going as planned, I'll excuse myself to get a glass of water and take a few deep breaths. A lot of practicing has also helped me perfect the art of smiling even when I'm really pissed.

  3. wow, thanks for sharing and being vulnerable on your blog. that's real life. we all have these not-so-proud moments. at least you're aware of it and can grow from it, ya know? <3 EverRubyGirl.blogspot.com


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