I realize that playing competitive sports involves the ego. In order to compete I think you need it to some degree. Probably more than some degree. A lot. The problem occurs when we need to get out of the ego in order to gain proper perspective of our evolvement as human beings. Both as an athlete and as a person.

There’s a fine line I toe when I’m teaching my son how to be an assassin when he’s up at bat in Little League but encourage him to turn off the ruthless attitude after the game is over. It’s confusing.

Here’s why. Because the older I get the more I work to rid myself of my ego as I don’t feel like it serves me in the long run. And playing sports puts your ego front and center. Because of this shift, winning becomes fairly if not very important in the grand scheme of things.

I like winning as much as the next guy, but we tend not reflect on our performance after a win as much as we would after a loss. “If I hadn’t struck out we might have scored another run and had a better chance of winning. What can I do to improve my hitting?” These are important questions. On the baseball field and off.

In the meantime, the winners are finishing up their ice cream cones and gloating about their record.