By Amadeus Rex | Published: November 21, 2020
It’s good to have a plan for everything.
When you have a clear idea of how you intend for some event (or series of such) to go, things will often run smoothly so long as you follow the blueprints. But life and the world tend go at a pace that simply disregards our plans, and this truth could be hard to accept when we want to follow a specific path to meet specific goals.
When I was younger, I enjoyed playing the real-time strategy game Starcraft: Brood War.
This was at a time I had no idea how to play with other people online, so I simply played matches against computer opponents (AI).
Enabling Cheat Codes
One of my favorite things to do was to live out my little power fantasies by enabling cheat codes that allowed me to remain invincible and play the game without having to go through all the bothersome mechanics.
In short, I wanted to play the game without actually playing the game. I just wanted to amass an excessive army and crush computer-controlled opponents without breaking a sweat.
Winning every time ended up getting tiring quickly as nothing was at risk, especially when the outcome was always certain.
Playing For Real
I eventually decided to play without cheat codes, being forced to learn how to play the game for real.
To my naive young self’s surprise, it was far more interesting and thrilling than working towards an expected victory.
What was the largest change I had to make from easy, undeserved victories to these challenging ones?
I had to learn how to make all the right decisions to win, even when a lot of things would go differently than I had planned.
It was hard at first.
I knew nothing of forming strategies and decision-making, nor did I comprehend the intricacies of the game’s mechanics. I would time and time again get destroyed by my opponents, as I was not yet capable of predicting their movements.
But with time and perseverance, I eventually found myself enjoying the game as it was intended to be enjoyed and won through my own abilities.
Though no one strategy was foolproof, having a few up my sleeve with different conditional plans of action made the flow of the game much more interesting while keeping me on my toes.
Not Necessarily A Failure
While we may have our plans towards the goals we want to achieve in life, the knowledge that they won’t always be followed to a T shouldn’t be taken with regret.
Nothing is satisfying if it is too easy and predictable, and not every turn of events is necessarily a failure.
Even if our plans aren’t realized, and even if the backup plans for those plans aren’t realized either, there will always be a way around and through things so long as we accept these turns of events for what they are.
When a plan fails, another plan can be found to take its place.
When a goal is assailed by circumstances, other goals may still be found desirable.
A turn is turn, a new perspective — not an end.