Over the weekend, I bought a Yahtzee game for 10 cents at a garage sale.  It was a childhood favorite that I haven’t played in a long time.

For those of you who don’t know (or don’t remember!), Yahtzee is a dice game that scores in three main areas:
> The “top” part, where if you amass 63 points (equivalent to three each of 1-6 on the dice), you receive a 35 point bonus
> The “bottom” part, with miscellaneous categories like 4 of a kind, straights and full house
> Yahtzee, where you earn 50 points for getting all five dice the same in three rolls.

As I was playing, it occurred to me that the format of Yahtzee is a metaphor for goals in life:
> You need to tend to the basics first (the “top”) and ensure you get enough points to earn the bonus or you will surely lose
> The bottom allows for more flexibility, and could represent longer-term goals
> And Yahtzee is a long-shot, but something you try for anyway.

There is also a “chance” category, where you can put whatever you rolled without needing it to fit into a category.  Leaving yourself enough flexibility for “chance” is a good strategy as well.

If you just aim for Yahtzee or only focus on the bottom portion, it is doubtful that you will succeed.  But if you pay attention to all the sections, life will have more strategy than just rolling the dice.

— beth triplett

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