On Keeping Score

My morning meditation runs are usually at the same place and part of the trail runs behind the baseball fields on a narrow path between the scoreboard and the fence. A place where home runs are earned and points add up.

As I was running this morning, I thought of all the things we keep score of. We keep score in all kinds of little ways. You called whom last> How many days has it been since you sent that email with no response? Who was the last one to grab the check for coffee or lunch? Whose post had more comments? Whose picture had more likes?

We want to know where we stand, so we keep score. Instead of actually being present with people, we are calculating, which closes us off from true connection.

It’s a byproduct of living in a capitalistic society where we are encouraged to climb higher and higher rather than give more and more. Rather than interacting with the person who is sitting before us, we are interacting with a scoreboard.

What if instead, we were actually present in the moment with the person who was sitting in our presence? What if instead of keeping score, we kept track of what was going on in someone’s life? What if we tried to remember the first holiday, the first birthday after someone’s loved one passed away? What if we dismissed that voice that tried to convince us that we had to get ahead of someone else in order to be successful and listened instead to the voice asking us to slow down and walk beside someone?

Maybe instead of scoreboards, we would have scores of friends.