• Christopher Tanner

Play Like a Child

I already mentioned on here that I am trying to transition from the job that I’ve had for 6-7 years now and plan on trying a new venture. Instead of playing poker for a living, I am going to play writer. Right now is an exciting time for me. I feel as though I am currently going through the most intense emotional workout camp that I have ever experienced. Throughout the course of writing my first book, which will be mostly autobiographical , I will be continuously challenged. It is tough work sharing personal experiences with others, especially on the kind of scale that I have so far in this blog. I will go deeper in the book, and hopefully it will reach an even bigger audience. Why not? Why would I want to stay at the same level? Don’t I want to push myself? To get through it, I will want to be the strongest type of person I know: a child.


I don’t know how I am going to deal with the intensity of continuously being vulnerable. Throughout this blog I have, on various occasions, ripped myself open to see what is there. Just looking at oneself in this way is tough. It is real, honest, and it forces one to look at themselves in the most vulnerable way. I am not good, I am not bad, I just am. I am whatever I am. I can cover myself back up and ignore what I saw, or I can accept my past and build on it. I prefer to look at it as an opportunity for a lesson. How can I improve myself? My 8 year old self knew I was not perfect, but I was determined to get better. At 28 years old, I hope that I am as wise as my 8 year old self was in this regard.

The emotional stress caused by ripping open the core of one’s being is similar to the physical stress created on one’s muscles when they weight train. Weight training is designed to help individuals push their muscles beyond their current limitations, to the point that the muscles actually rip. The body then works to repair itself and in the process our muscles grow back stronger. It is a simple yet beautiful process. Our highly evolved human bodies are truly a work of art and nature is the artist. This is effectively the same process we go through emotionally when pushed outside our comfort zones. We can view it as an opportunity to grow or we can put it off for another day. How are we going to view this challenge?


Why not view it as a game? Games are fun, which is positive, and we are more likely to “reach the next level” if we are being positive. That is why I have always said that I “play poker” for a living and why I am now trying to make the switch to “playing writer.” Playing is not a “kid exclusive” activity, and adults could learn a thing about this from children. A child’s mind is more adaptable and open to change and a big reason for that is the way they typically view the world. Being vulnerable is tough and I do not think anyone handles it as well as children. That is why they ask so many questions. They do not care if they ask a “stupid” question. There is something they do not know and they want an answer. They do not even care or worry about how vulnerable it makes them appear to others. That is why they are stronger than most adults. When life gets tough, take a lesson from a child. Work hard to beat that level. If you fail to beat it today, remember that “it happens” sometimes. Instead of focusing on the “failure,” work to review what you learned from your efforts today. Tomorrow is a new opportunity to play the game again. Play is the act of enjoying the process of working to improve. What do you think? Could humanity improve if we added a little more “play” to our lives?

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