I spend a lot of time writing about board games, and for good reason- they’re awesome! The reality is, there is much more to playing a board game than just the rules and pieces. For many, the fun of board games can quickly dissipate when playing with a someone who cannot handling losing. Even your favorite person in the world could prove to be an absolute nightmare in the name of fun.
Whether you know someone who has a problem with placing last or you do yourself, knowing how to prevent being the sore loser of the party is key.
Remember the point
Nobody likes the feeling of being pushed set back by an opponent mid game-play, but it’s inevitable. By agreeing to a game you are accepting the risk of being put in your place. It’s just the nature of the beast. That being said, remember why you’re playing to begin with! It’s supposed to be fun. Board games offer a great opportunity to be social and share a few laughs with your friends. So much in life is really hard, with actual consequences- don’t bring that kind of stress or pressure into this! Channel your mind to a place where nothing matters, and the loss will roll off your back like never before.
Before you let yourself explode over an unfortunate turn of events, make sure your head is rooted in the real world. Chances are you’re surrounded by people you love or at least, enjoy spending time with. Throw too much of a fit and you may find yourself on the outside of these gatherings sooner or later. Even worse, you could seriously hurt someones feelings, even without meaning to. Not everyone may be able to handle your overreaction, especially younger kids and children. Remember it’s just a game, and you can’t take back words or actions after the fact.
Congratulate the Winner Right Away
I actually know a couple ‘recovering sore losers’. After hosting many game nights, I’ve seen my fair share of them. One trick I’ve noticed over time, is immediately upon a loss- the ones who take it the hardest end up being the first to acknowledge the winner. If you put yourself in their position and celebrate their victory with them rather than turn it into a bad thing, you will prevent any rash reactions you’d regret later. Besides, all is fair in life and board games right? There are so many other things to be mad about in this world, focus on the fact that someone you like is happy and roll with it!
Take a break
I think we have all had those episodes where you’ve elected to play a game to get away from your troubles, only to find they follow you throughout. Nothing is going right; you keep getting set back, your opponents are taking you to town- and all of a sudden something that was supposed to be fun turns toxic. It’s real, it happens- you’re only human. Some are more naturally prone to this experience over others. If it happens to you or to someone during game play- suggest a break. Grab a snack, refocus/regroup- and go back to our first tip, remember the point. Board games aren’t an alternative form of torture or punishment. If you aren’t finding enjoyment, then give it a rest until you’re more up for it.
Board gaming can be an extremely emotional ‘sport’, there’s no question about it. Some people are better built to compete in both competitive and casual games- some aren’t. Don’t let this discourage you from engaging just keep yourself in check and be prepared for anything. A simple attitude adjustment is all it will take in the face of frustration during a game! Enjoy!