Are You Victorious Or Defeated?

Are You Victorious Or Defeated?

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game of chess you are either victorious or defeated

Many of us compete in some form or another, and on some level or another. Some of us compete in various sports, some of us compete in our workplace to win better positions, clients or new contracts, and some simply compete in various types of games. Regardless of the competition, when we have defeated our opponent, we get to hold our head high in the winner’s circle. But, when it is us who get defeated, we just want to escape and attract as little attention as possible.

This is generally short-lived however. We soon get over the disappointment of our loss. We pick ourselves up, dust off, and get back to it. After all, it was just a game. Sure, next time you see the person who won against you, you can be sure they will remember their victory, as will you. But, chances are good that their victory will be short-enjoyed because you now realize where you went wrong and what you need to do to take the win next time. But, what happens when this isn’t a game? What happens when you become defeated by circumstances in your own life?

This is very common. We strive to accomplish our goals and become something great. We have an idea of where we think we ought to be by a certain age. But, when we fall short of these goals, we can become defeated; all by ourselves. If this happens often enough, in a short period of time, we start to have too much negative experience that turns into ammunition that we start aiming, and ultimately, firing at ourselves. At this point, it doesn’t take long to spiral downwards into depression. In time, this will lead us to lose our will to remain competitive.

How do we get to a point of being self-defeated?

This downward spiral is a combination of many things and although we could get off this ride at any moment, we often stay on right to the bottom. Why though? Don’t we see what is happening? Maybe, but it is possible that we don’t know how to find the exit.

For the sake of this article, and to further explain my thought, I am going to form a word; compound-failures. I am using this because it is generally exactly what happens to get us to the point of utter defeat. We try something, and it fails. Then we try something else, and it fails too. Then we do something stupid, at least in our opinion; add that to the pot now.

Then, because our mood is low, or off, we snap at our spouse, or our boss. Now we are in a situation with them. This is the compounding effect. Now, not only do we have failures on our plate, but, we have emotions getting us in trouble too. Say our boss didn’t like our little explosion, or lack of respect towards them and he tells you to pack up and head out. Suddenly, we can’t cover our bills. Now that all these things have taken place, we are in a poor frame of mind. We don’t feel like doing anything else, so, we don’t. Last stop of the ride; depression.

Giving up doesn’t stop the pain

At this point, we don’t want to try anything else. The chance of failure is so great that we decide that if we don’t try, we can’t fail. Although this is self-destructive, it starts to feel safe. But, it’s far from safe. Now we have many other things at risk.

Trying to maintain a healthy marriage while depressed is basically impossible. If you don’t feel like doing anything constructive in your own life, how are you supposed to be excited and loving and supportive of your spouse about the things going on in their life? How long will they want to be around you in this condition? How about work; can you consistently go to work depressed? Is the boss and co-workers okay with you dragging your feet around and operating at half-throttle?

I realize that when we have too many failures in life and we get into a mode of depression, beating ourselves up starts to feel good. It is our way of punishing ourselves. But, we don’t see the real cost of this behavior.

We are jeopardizing the good that is still in our lives. Our marriage is a win. Our job is a win. And, our friends are a win. We can start to lose these things due to our condition and then these become failures that will just add to the pile.


Okay, so how do I find the exits on this downward spiral ride of defeated-living?

What we need to realize is that we CAN get off this ride at any time. When the first thing goes wrong, we can handle it in a way that is constructive. We don’t have to absorb the blow and line up for the next one. We can look for a way to try again to overcome it, or we can suppress any chances of success by becoming depressed. It is simply a mindset and we must make a choice of the direction we want to take this.

Here are a few things that I must realize and do when I get defeated to avoid further damage and depression:

1. Understand that not everything will be instant success

Sometimes we get it in our minds that when we try something, the outcome is the final answer. If we fail, then we believe that we are no good at it and shouldn’t try again. Where do we get the idea that we should succeed on the first time, every time? If we can learn that we might not be victorious on the first try, then we won’t be overly frustrated with ourselves in the event that it goes this way. We will be more likely to accept defeat and try again.

2. The choice is ours to remain defeated

When we lose, or fail at something, we have a choice to try again or give up. Depression is a choice as it is up to us to choose to be pro-active and find solutions for our problems or give in and not try at all. We can have all the best people around us as possible feeding us compliments or offering support, but, it comes down to our own decision to accept the help and work towards climbing out of a depressed state.

3. Get around a positive influence

When we do finally decide that we want to get out of depression, it is necessary to immerse ourselves in a positive atmosphere. This could be people we know, support groups, churches, workshops and seminars on positive living and even online motivational speakers.

By spending enough time around these people, we start to also think in a positive way. Through this, we can start to notice opportunity again and find new motivation to try. By bouncing ideas off other people too, we can start to come up with creative ways to try new things or different ways to attempt what we previously failed at.

4. Try something new

There is a familiar saying that many attributed to Albert Einstein; “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting a different result.”

Regardless of who said it, it is one of the truest statements out there. If we are trying to succeed in life and keep coming up short, it is time to try something new. We need to look at the steps we took and the results we got and modify them when we try again. What we should get from our failures is knowledge and wisdom. Every experience we have is a lesson, and we should look at it this way and embrace it as such.


Living life is sometimes difficult. Living defeated is much more difficult. But, there are ways to overcome this way of living and get back on track. Be aware of your emotions, stress levels, and overall state of being, and don’t let yourself get worked up. Often, it is us who gets us worked up the most.

Realize that you have a choice to allow yourself to get defeated to the point of depression and that by being pro-active in looking for positive solutions early on can help keep you on the right path. Even when certain things in your life aren’t going the way you hoped, start looking for the things that are good in your life and enjoy those while you create a new plan of attack.

Good luck!

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Man staring out on the water, contemplating that you don't have to live defeated 4 Simple Ways You Can Break the Cycle and Live Victoriously

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17 thoughts on “Are You Victorious Or Defeated?

  1. I always enjoy your articles. Very motivational. Many of us have fear of failure. There are many people I know that would never take any risk because fear of failure is always on their mind. Their fear is so massive that it paralyzed them from doing anything. I remember when I first got started online; I was so fearful that I was going to fail. Over time I start to understand that failure is inevitable in life. If I let fear of failure stand in the way, I will never achieve anything. Failure is a steppingstone to success. All successful people all have failures. Failures teach us valuable lessons. Changing our mindset and hand out with positive people like you said get around a positive influence will help you succeed. Thank you for sharing. I really enjoyed it. I am going to share it on my facebook.

    1. Hi Hong,
      Thank you for your lovely comments on my articles. Thank you also for sharing with your friends!


  2. I love your article. It really does expose some important ways to overcome depression and the feeling of defeat.
    I am always aware of my stress level and it is high right now. The way I cope is to pray and to get my mind in a more positive state by either listening to music and to exercise.
    Actually, your article has helped me this morning to be more positive and know that things will get better.

    1. Hi Cynthia,
      Thank you for taking the time to read my article.
      I am glad to hear that you are being pro-active in your life and taking charge even when things get tough. The important fact here is that you are putting in an effort to be victorious, and even if it seems small or progress is slow, keep at it. You will come out stronger because of it.
      Take care,

  3. Great post…I always enjoy what your thoughts are!
    Self-defeat attitudes can be so incidious and sneaky…they can disguise as genuine signs of going the wrong way sometimes…they can drag us into inaction instead of perservering…you outline excellent strategies for changing that mindset.
    I heard a study the other day about kids today, where almost a third are depressed…often their parents, too. Thank you for spreading the word about ways out of that state!

  4. I am guilty of snapping at others when I feel defeated in my own daily tasks or even long-term exploits. Your strategies to overcome that seem like they may be very helpful and I am going to try to use them. I find it can be a painful chain. I feel defeated, I get mad at others that are not the cause, I deal with guilt, and then I am sidelined by that guilt and cause more delays in achieving goals. I am confident this may help. Thank you for the tips!

    1. Hi Christina,
      Thank you for taking the time to read my articles. It is good that you are aware of your own actions and that you are exploring various strategies to overcome some of the less than desirable characteristics. We all have bad days, and even myself; I need to read some of my own articles sometimes and those of others to get back on track.
      Nobody is exempt from the pressures of life.
      Keep at it!


  5. Great article, Shawn/Tara.
    Yes, this thing called life and the ‘curve balls’ that come our way. It takes a conscious decision to make the best of any situation and needless to say – willpower – albeit it is something that is on the inside, it is something that everyone needs to function adequately.
    It’s individual but even then, there are common threads among us all.
    Yes, great thoughts and potential solutions. Thnx.

  6. Playing sports as a child has helped me accept defeat without having to dwell on it too long. Especially Golf. If you think too long about the bad shot you just made, the rest of your day may be in the toilet.
    You make a good point on the people you choose to hang with, if they put you down, you stay down. Get with the up crowd and keep going forward for success.

  7. Hello you two! Fabulous article indeed. And the idea that we have that power to realize the changes that we need to do. There is an Asian word for obstacles that really means opportunity. And if we see our challenges or obstacles as opportunity, that truly changes our mind set doesn’t it?
    Thank you so much for this article.
    In peace and gratitude, ariel

  8. “Giving up doesn’t stop the pain.” This is truly profound and resonates so deeply with me. Sadly, when we are our own opponent and attempt to fight with and defeat our own selves this is the most disheartening. This is why cultivating a more positive life is everything. Another terrific post- thanks for sharing.

  9. This is excellent- it’s something that I aim to teach my daughters everyday. As they have gotten more involved in sports and further along in school, it is difficult to find the balance between encouraging them to do their best without placing too much emphasis on winning a competition. My husband and I both want them to fail while they’re still under our roof, so that we can teach them to stand up again. I hope to use your strategies to ensure that I’m not falling into the compounding trap as well!

  10. Thank you everyone for participating in the conversation and sharing your personal experiences.
    They are a blessing to me and I am sure they help others too!