Do you remember playing Tic Tac Toe as a kid and getting frustrated every time you lost a game?
Well here’s a little secret for you…
If you take a few moments to memorize a few very simple strategies you’ll never, ever lose another game of Tic Tac Toe.
And I can say that with 100% certainty.
Why? Well, the answer is because Tic Tac Toe is what’s known as a “solved game”.
That means there are a finite number of moves that can be made by both players and there are strategies you can use that will guarantee that you never lose a game if you follow a simple pattern that can never result in a loss (as long as you don’t make a mistake somewhere along the way).
Notice that I said “never result in a loss“, not “always guarantee a win“.
The reason you can’t be assured of winning even if you never make a mistake is because there are moves your opponent can make that will always cause the game to end in a tie.
In other words, this strategy thing works both ways.
But that being said, if you always follow the simple strategies detailed in the short video below you will never lose another game of Tic Tac Toe. The worst you can do is end up with a tie.
Ready to learn how to never lose at this beloved game from your childhood? Watch, and learn…
Note: You can watch this video at full screen by clicking the little “square” icon in the lower-right corner of the video after it begins playing.
Pretty simple, right? Always play the game using the strategies explained in the video and you’ll never lose. Guaranteed.
But guess what? The actual purpose of this post isn’t really to teach you how to never lose at Tic Tac Toe. That’s simply an example to help illustrate a much broader strategy – a life strategy.
Truth be told, Tic Tac Toe isn’t the only “solved game” there is. In fact, there are many.
And now, here’s another little secret for you…
There are many “solved games” that affect other facets of our lives.
One simple example…
“Don’t drink and drive or drive while under the influence of narcotics and you’ll never get a DUI.”
And here’s one more…
“Don’t go skydiving and you’ll never go splat due to a malfunction with your parachute.“
Of course you already know the risks involved with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and you surely understand the risks involved with skydiving.
It’s up to each and every one of us to make the decision to do (or not do) those things.
All I’m saying is those two things are “solved games”. If you refrain from doing the thing it’s guaranteed that you’ll never “lose” at it.
As I stated above, this same principle applies to numerous facets of our lives.
Every decision we make has potential consequences associated with it, and the only sure way to avoid those consequences is to choose not to play the game.
But here’s the kicker…
Oftentimes the decision not to do a certain thing or take a certain action could well have potential consequences of its own.
For example, a doctor could tell you that you need a life-saving operation if you want to have a chance at living a full (and fulfilling) life.
However, the surgery itself might have serious risks associated with it, up to and including the risk that you might not make it through the operation.
It’s up to each and every one of us to carefully consider the potential consequences of every decision we’re faced with and choose the action (or inaction) that makes the most sense at the time.
Bottom line: In many ways, life really is a gamble.
There are potential risks and rewards associated with most every decision we make. Our never-ending job as human beings is to weigh the potential risks against the potential benefits and do what we think is best at the time.
Should we always opt for the guaranteed safest choice? In my opinion, the answer is no. After all, huge rewards often require huge risks.
Just remember that many of the things we have the opportunity to do in life are “solved games”.
While you might not be able to always guarantee a “win”, in most situations there will be a choice that will guarantee that you won’t “lose”.
Whether that “no-lose” choice is the right one or not is something that has to be determined on the fly, and it can only be determined by you.