"Powering Through" and Doing Your Best - In Gaming and In Life

To any regulars in the shop, it hasn't been a secret that I haven't been feeling well the last month or so. It's nothing new, I tend to get pretty sick every single year around autumn, probably a combination of the weather change on top of asthma and allergies. Despite how it's never much of a surprise, it manages to be a huge pain every year, with this year being the ultimate example. I went to the doctor previously (Bossman was one of the people who pushed me to go and get myself checked out), and I was prescribed some stuff for Walking Pneumonia and told to take it easy and I would be fine in no time. Ultimately, I completely ignored my Doctor's orders and continued to work my normal shifts, hang out with friends after work, game and act like I wasn't that sick, while taking my prescriptions. Eventually, this lifestyle landed me in the hospital on Saturday night, gasping for air, scolded by Doctors and pretty bummed out. My condition got a lot worse due to the way I treated it and I ended up with a deep lung infection among other problems, all multiplied pretty vigorously thanks to my asthma. While sitting in the hospital mid-asthma attack and breathing through a tube I couldn't help but think...."damn this will be a good blog!" At 24 years old I feel like I was reminded of such an obvious and palpable lesson from my youth that I couldn't help but be semi-embarrassed.




There's some discernible honor in "powering through" a major problem alone, yes? To hold your head up high and suffer silently without letting other people understand your perception, therefore carrying the same expectations of you, right? No, of course not! This isn't an anime! It's honestly pretty stupid in most cases and will certainly end poorly for everyone involved, especially when there are people in your life relying on you. On the contrary the glory lies in knowing your own current limitations and operating at the maximum you can without exhausting your tank, taking into consideration things like health and family and utilizing your strengths. Over extending yourself to the point where you are becoming a burden on other people is not worth the initial work you powered through. I suppose the concept can roughly be compared to the classic tale "The Tortoise and the Hare", and ignoring the philosophical notion of "Achilles and the Tortoise" (Zeno please stop) we are all well versed in how the tale ends. This is a rough comparison with a multitude of adaptations, but ultimately the slower and more meticulous style (the tortoise) triumphs over the brute force style (the hare). I feel sometimes people need to be reminded of the negatives of powering through issues without dealing with them properly. (myself included apparently!)




It's important not to blur the lines between working meticulously and being lazy/working a fair and honest amount and running yourself into the ground. By no means have I been overworked, if anything my current concern in this aspect is aimed towards Bossman and Enrique, who have been working diligently at LAN Mob to cover shifts in our recent staff changes, and my irresponsible response to my initial sickness has made this burden ever heavier. I simply could not live my life normally while being sick and consequently made everything much worse by becoming sicker and not dealing with the unexpected problem of being unhealthy properly. Please do not take this blog post and show it to your boss/authority figures and misinterpret what I am trying to say to get time off or make your job easier. In fact, I think these types of people are a major reason these types of problems crop up. Giving your best towards a goal is an incredible thing to do, and I implore you to do so in every facet of your life, in fact most authoritative positions will expect it from you. However, it's important to understand your limitations and not over-extend for an unnecessary reason, ending up down the river without a paddle needing to be rescued, especially when communication lines were open to deal with problem initially. While at the hospital I tried to write how I felt metaphorically and I guess it's like telling your buddy you don't need some food when they offer, proceeding to go all day without any nourishment and ultimately passing out, leaving your friend to take care of you. You accomplished nothing! That was annoying for everyone! What are you trying to prove!?  





So I guess one could ask "why write about this relatively trivial concept?" Outside of feeling a bit guilty, (writing really helps believe it or not!) and thinking about it A LOT, I think this issue relates directly to competitive gaming as well. Regardless of the game, we all know what it's like to try so incredibly hard to succeed that we put ourselves in a terrible position. Whether it be trying to hard carry a team in League of Legends, or desperately trying to take a stock in Super Smash Brothers, attempting to power through aggressively can have some very negative effects. The alternative is to understand your goal, identify what is in the way (being sick or a fed Rengar) and coming up with a new path to succeed, even if it slows you down initially. With all the time I spend at LAN Mob around gamers with a strong competitive drive, I cannot help but see so many parallels between the problems they face on their screens and real life issues, and vice-versa. So take a step back sometimes and do your best to identify when something is getting in the way of you doing your best and deal with that road block first. Ignoring it or trying to blow through it most likely will end poorly for you and the people who rely on you to continue to do your best. It seems like such a simple concept but I truly had an epiphany of sorts. I was reminded of how obviously important meticulous thinking, problem solving and communication with your team is when you hit a road block (like Walking Pneumonia!). Consider the consequences of your current path towards your goal and take a detour if you must, sometimes it's for the best, even when it may not seem so initially. Said roadblock may catch up to you and become even worse. (full blown Pneumonia!)



"It is a rare goal that has only one path." - Carma Spence







PS


I'm feeling a TON better thanks to some proper rest and medicine (and following Doctor's orders...). I'll be back this weekend for sure! It's funny, after being open for roughly 16 months this is the absolute longest I've ever gone without stepping foot in LAN Mob, and it definitely feels very strange. I find myself missing seeing the regulars everyday and hopping in some games with them. I really look forward to coming back!  


Bossman edit - I feel complicit in this sordid mess as well. We were short staffed as is, but I should have extended Sage more time off. Lesson learned. I'm happy he's recovering and looking forward to seeing him back in action!
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