How many tries does it take?

Solitaire can be a stress reliever, or for some, a stress inducer….

I’ve been playing on the mornings when I have time, but those are fewer and farther between.
I enjoy the game, and the “slow down” time it affords me, so today I was determined to play.
Allowing myself 15 minutes, I started, and was pleased with the first score of 698.
Not bad for a first try.
Then the second game had a score of 718, then 643.
Odd scores, don’t you think?

Yes, I admit to hitting the “undo” button, to possibly help the game move along, and quite possibly to help me achieve a better score.
And a couple of times, I was going too fast, and realized, after I had turned the next group of 3 cards over, that I had a play on the last one. So I hit “undo” and made the play.
We lose points when we “undo” a play, or a turn of the cards.
But sometimes losing points is okay, and we just move on…

The day had just begun, and already it was going too fast.
But going back, starting again with a fresh play, didn’t seem to bother me.
A Virgo, typically, I want it to be right the first time.
But for some reason, today I allowed myself to stop, go back and rework it, and still I won.

Does it matter how we get to the end result?

It isn’t about perfection. It’s about trying, and trying again, and doing our best to meet our goals.

After all, it took 40 tries to come up with just the right formula for WD-40.

WD-40 cans“It was developed in 1953 by Dr. Norm Larsen, founder of the Rocket Chemical Company, in San Diego, California. WD-40, abbreviated from the phrase “Water Displacement, 40th formula,” was originally designed to repel water and prevent corrosion, and later was found to have numerous household uses. Larsen was attempting to create a formula to prevent corrosion in nuclear missiles, by displacing the standing water that causes it. He claims he arrived at a successful formula on his 40th attempt.”






Can we set REALISTIC goals?

I hit the wall with the first game of solitaire this morning with a big score of 75! There were “no useful moves detected”, so I started another game.

And I hit the wall again.  But even with scores of 165, 110, 230, and 195, I wasn’t upset that I was losing. I was just in the flow…


And then I won a game, with a score of 695. My personal best high score is 740. I used to keep trying to beat that score, but I’m at a point in my life where high scores are less important. Playing a good, solid game means more. Strategies, good card placement, staying in the rhythm of the game – these are uppermost in my mind right now.

I lost the next game with a 55, and the next one at 125. I needed to wrap up, and get on with my day, so I told myself “I’ll play till I win one more.”

Ironically, I won the next game with a 705. Typically I hit the “auto complete”, but this time I hit “manual completion,” to have that feeling of being in control of the final outcome. But wouldn’t the outcome be the same, regardless of HOW I got there?

Setting goals. We all do it at different times in our lives. And when we don’t attain our goals, we feel like a failure. And when big corporations set financial goals, unrealistic goals, and they don’t meet them, it often results in bankruptcy, or closing down altogether…

I worked for a company that had a pretty set standard for weekly goals. And I didn’t know of ONE person who actually met that goal. I watched as the people in the company felt more defeated by the day, knowing that by the end of the week, they’d fall short of that goal. I wondered why they didn’t set a more realistic goal, so that when they met it, they would thrive on the excitement, and accomplish more. I do that in my own life, and it seems to work…

I’m not saying that setting your goals real low is always a good thing. I’m saying that REALISTIC goals can often get you where you need to go. I’ve done it, and I’m thriving on the excitement, daily…


Chris Angell is an author, coach and consultant. I attended one of his business planning seminars a year or so ago, and I really connected with him, and his thought processes. He stood in front of this group and said the very thing that I was thinking – if the goals you’re setting now aren’t attainable, set a more realistic goal. Sitting in the back of the room, I could see the attendees breathing easier. They all nodded in agreement. They got it.  And I bet that the next weeks and months were more productive for those who attended that day…

Be realistic. It’s really that simple. And it works.

What are your goals for today, this week, this month?

And what are you doing to move toward them?