There's a videogame I play which I call Game, and one of the features and challenges of Game is that, though you can save your progress between sessions, you cannot save your progress during a session--that is, when you make a mistake and die, you have to start over all the way at the beginning.
Earlier today I allowed myself to start up a saved session and play about five minutes of Game and during that time I made a very, very stupid mistake and died, and just like that ten-and-a-half hours of gameplay disappeared and, once again, I'm back to the start.
One of the things I like about Game is that because the stakes are simultaneously so high (die and start over) and so low (it's still just a video game), it provides a surprisingly good platform for learning about yourself and discovering opportunities for growth.
So today, after I died, I wanted to make sure that I would learn something from the stupid, stupid thing I'd done, and so I started articulating to myself what I'd like that to be. "I will not continually make the same stupid mistakes," was one thing I said to myself. That'd be a good thing to learn, right?
And it was then that I realized that I had something salient to share here. An important teaching of Jerry's is, "The body doesn't know 'not.'" He means that the body deals only in concrete realities, whereas the negation of something is an abstraction. Thus, if I want to effect a change in my life--if I want my recreation to be an opportunity for learning and growth, if I want it to help teach me something about living a better life--then I have to find a way to articulate what I want to learn as a positive and concrete affirmation.
Here you might expect me to share exactly how I've come to articulate the change I wish to see after today's events, but I haven't gotten to that point yet. So instead of rushing into an answer, I am for now keeping myself open to the question: How best do I make this experience into a gift?