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‘The Game of Life and How to Play It’

Dear Lucy: “I recently was asked by a friend of mine to cosign a loan for her for $20,000. She said that she would repay me after she received a settlement from a lawsuit.
 Lucy Shaw

Lately, I have been writing a set of HeartPaks® for my web site based on a book by Florence Shinn titled “The Game of Life and How to Play It.” It is a marvelous little book written in 1925. Shinn says that we all like to think that life is a battle. Instead, it should be thought of as a great game that works perfectly when we know the rules of the game! I think she is absolutely correct!  

Dear Lucy: “I recently was asked by a friend of mine to cosign a loan for her for $20,000. She said that she would repay me after she received a settlement from a lawsuit.  I made a significant loan to her several years ago that she never repaid. I really want to help my friend but I am having financial problems of my own right now. People think that because my parents have money, so do I.”

Dear reader: Experience has already shown that this “friend” is not a good risk and you have no guarantee that she will repay you since she didn’t the last time. It is also true that people think that when the family has money, every member of the family has money. The fact of the matter is that whatever your parents have is theirs by right of their own consciousness for obtaining it.  

If you are having financial challenges yourself, you probably need to learn how to get and keep your own money just as they did.  Giving it away to people who are not trustworthy is not a rule for the game.

Get rid of the guilt that says you have to lend money and do unreasonable things for people to maintain their friendship.  Real friends don’t ask and if they do, it is rare and they pay up quickly! Count yourself quite fortunate. You went to the classroom of life once with this woman, you paid for the class in what she didn’t pay you back.  Now do you need to pay to take the class again and still flunk?

So, in the words of Shakespeare from “Hamlet,” here is the rule in the game of life for this particular thing: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, For loan oft loses both itself and friend, And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.”  

In other words, the best way to lose a friend is by lending money and having to go through all the resentment that comes with that. The thing about “husbandry” simply means that as long as someone can depend on another person to take care of them, they no longer need to take care of themselves.  Is this the game you want to play?

Get a new game!


(Check out Lucy Shaw’s website at http://www.heartworks4u.com. You may send your questions to her by U.S. mail to: Heartworks4U, LLC; 4646 Poplar Ave. Ste 201, Memphis, TN 38117 or by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Go to www.heartworks4u.com to sign up for HeartPaks®)

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