Playing For Real
For the last few weeks, I’ve been watching my daughter and her 9-10 years old classmates play basketball against other schools.
These are friendly matches and the level of the teams is not even. One of the rules in effect is this1: if the score gap becomes too large, the scoreboard is turned off and the teams can no longer see the score.
Something happens the moment the scoreboard is turned off. It’s like the match is not for real anymore. The teams no longer play as hard. Even the public attention and cheers falter.
If we doing work that matters to us, we’ll probably need to turn the scoreboard back on. Even if the score is only visible to us. It’s difficult to make progress without skin in the game.
This is called The Mercy Rule. Thanks to BQ for pointing out. ↩︎