Am I too competitive?
Updated: Mar 23, 2022
Humans love competition. They have from the beginning of time. This is evident with the multi-billion dollar pro sports industry. Participating or observing competition within sports or games can be exhilarating. But, if there is competition at the root of your interpersonal relationships, I will put money on it that you are experiencing relationship issues. With this rivalry mindset, you may often think, "I beat that person" or "I lost to that person," and an inferiority or superiority complex arises. Relational competition contributes to seeing others as your adversaries.
When competition is at the core of a relationship, you may be thinking, "I beat that person" or "I lost to that person."
You may think others are looking down upon you or will harm you if they see a chance. This perspective makes your experience of the world a scary place! And, do others give more than a nanosecond of a crap about what you are doing? I'll let you in on a secret... probably not.
If you find yourself having difficulty being genuinely happy for other people's successes and happiness, there is a root of competition in your relationship. I sense when someone else isn't genuinely happy for me when I experience success in my life, and it disconnects us. As a result, I tend to pull away from these people. Do you sense this in some of your interactions as well?
If you find yourself having difficulty being genuinely happy for other people's successes and happiness, this is because there is a root of competition in your relationship.
I struggled with a competitive mindset myself when I owned a salon. I had a hard time feeling genuinely happy for those I designated as competitors and adversaries. And, guess what? My unhealthy internal competition with them ate at me and caused me to feel inferior or superior, depending on the day. Once I let that shit go, I relaxed and became so much happier. I lied to myself for years, believing this internal competition with these other businesses motivated me to build a better business. This couldn't have been farther from the truth.
We must acknowledge that although each person is not the same, we are all equal. We all have various ages, genders, knowledge, experiences, and appearances. There are no two of us in all history that are the same. So again, regardless of our differences, human beings are all equal, but not the same. Why compete with another human being who is perfectly equal yet not the same as you?
We must acknowledge that although each person is not the same, we are all equal. We all have various ages, genders, knowledge, experiences, and appearances. There are no two of us in all of history that are exactly the same.
To wrap this up, competition within our relationships will always create problems because there are winners and losers at the end of the competition. And, even if you are the 'winner,' you will still not have peace because you know that within this competition, you must keep winning so that you don't become a loser. This cycle keeps you in a place of distrust, stress, and lacking genuine connection. I still work through competitiveness within myself. Most of the time, I can recognize it early by paying attention to whether or not I feel genuinely happy for someone I know. If I don't, that is my clue that I feel a sense of inferiority or superiority with them. I try to nip this in the bud as soon as it comes to my awareness. I want to clarify that this is a practice, and there is no destination. Like you, I am sure that I will always have these feelings arise throughout my life because I live within a world that is preoccupied with winning and losing.
"If you know how quickly people forget the dead...you will stop living to impress people."
I'd love to hear your thoughts! Please share below in the comments.