Why Feeling “due to win” is Toxic to a Winning Mindset
Let’s say that you’re in the midst of a brutal losing streak. You’ve been getting smashed at PPTQs and you’ve had lousy performances at FNM, with matches decided by bad beats and poor decision making. No matter how positive you’ve tried to be, you’re still getting wrecked.
And let’s say your losing streak has been going on for 3 months – or longer – but no matter how bad you lose, you’re resilient enough to come back the next week and take another stab at victory.
You tell yourself four simple words that inspire you to roll out the playmat and sling strong:
“I’m due to win.”
A statement that seems harmless enough, yet simultaneously vindicating and righteous. You’ve been on the wrong end of bad luck and bad beats for weeks now, and the natural ebb and flow of the multiverse has you positioned to rise again, right?
Just because you’ve lost a bunch does not mean that one day, out of nowhere, you’re going to start winning again. Yes, luck goes both ways, and no losing streak lasts forever, but telling yourself that you’re due to win is a very flawed mentality.
Because it comes from the mentality of someone who is incredibly downtrodden and defeated by the disappointment of losing. It’s a mindset that recognizes a sense of shame in losing, when really, there is no shame in losing – ever. No matter how high the stakes may be.
Additionally, believing that you’re due for a win because you’ve lost so much is only setting you up for even more disappointment. Here’s how:
#1: A new level of negativity. If you tell yourself that you’re due to win and then you go out and have another miserable event, you’re going to bring on a whole new wave of negativity. You may start thinking ridiculous thoughts, such as:
- I’m really just not cut out for Magic
- I need to sell my cards and quit this game for good
- The game is awful
Obviously, these types of thoughts are counter-productive, and acting on them always brings about regret.
#2: Added pressure. When you tell yourself that you’re due to win, you’re subliminally pressuring yourself to perform well. And once your first misplay happens, thoughts of “here we go again” are likely to fill your mind, and at that point you’ll already be sliding down the slippery slope of disappointment.
So what’s the best mindset to have when you’re in the middle of a losing streak?
Play to learn, play to have fun, and don’t be ashamed to lose.
Remember, achieving your goals in Magic isn’t always about winning now. It’s about learning as much as you can now and properly setting yourself up to win big later.
Have you ever made the mistake of telling yourself that you’re due to win? If so, tell us about it, or post about it on the MTG Pro Tutor Facebook Page.
Thanks for reading.
– Jeff Sheerin, MTG Pro Tutor Scribe
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