Just be better than Bob: Ups and downs of competitiveness

Just be better than Bob: Ups and downs of competitiveness

Competitiveness is something that has accompanied each of us, in different ways, throughout our lives. We try to keep up with classmates at school, with our competitors at sport competitions, with our siblings and colleagues at work. We want to be better.

But most importantly better than others. Have a higher salary, a bigger house, and better work. Why is that? Why do we long to compete and win? And when does healthy competition turn into an unhealthy habit?
 

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What is healthy competition?

During our life, we ​​want to fulfill our needs, realize our talents and improve our abilities. When we succeed, we are satisfied. It’s not enough to be good at work and our hobbies, but also create good relationships and take responsibility for ourselves. Otherwise, we tend to be irritated, discontented and tense.

The image of ​​what we want to motivate us and pushes us forward. It does not mean that we are not good enough, but that we are working on ourselves to improve and be one step closer to our goal. In this respect, it is okay to try to be better and show your competitiveness. After all, in case, we are only competing with yesterday’s version of ourselves.

Control, planning, and competition

Competitiveness is fueling evolution and now is also behind the human’s desire to improve our technology and society. During strict regimes, when everything is fixed and planned, political parties are not worried about their position and competition was not promoted, the development of technology and companies is halted. Some countries are catching up even now.

When it comes to people, we need to assert ourselves, find our ways and possibilities, and be able to adapt to the outside world.

Unhealthy competition grows into rivalry

Competition and rivalry can be sometimes used to describe the same thing, because, according to psychologists, rivalry occurs mainly in competitive people who don’t like to lose. These people usually must have the last word, they cannot admit a mistake, and working with such a person is unbearable in the long run. They are people for whom competition is the meaning of life and the only goal is to win.

When the other has little respect for others and always wants to have the upper hand, there will never be a pleasant, safe climate for both sides. These people usually communicate not to understand, but to win, and address their interests.

In a company, however, there shouldn’t be a rivalry to the point when all cooperation is impossible. When working in a team, people should be treated as equals and should show respect to each other. For people who love competition too much, this is very hard.

Competition between children

Unhealthy competition often has its roots in childhood. Still, many teachers in our country prepare children by forcing them to compete for stamps, praise, etc. They say that by making children compete, they prepare them for success in adulthood. On the other hand, too much competition creates patterns of behavior and attitudes that can be harmful in everyday life, in relationships or at work.

Why do children always have to fight to be number one? Wouldn't it be better if they would rather look at the situation, the context and self-evaluate their success? If they saw the main benefit of learning something new about themselves, the world or others?

People can successfully coexist only in situations that promote cooperation and communication, not rivalry. Children should learn that not competing with everyone in whichever field is the basis of life, but that collaboration, creativity, communication, and compromise can bring satisfaction to the individual and success to the team.

Teamwork can hurt excessive competition

Competitiveness is due to natural human nature and its need to survive. The feeling when something goes well, and we are the first is simply priceless. When it comes to winning in the team, it's sometimes even better winning as an individual. And what motivates such competition? To be the winner, the best. In working relationships between colleagues, however, competition can produce worse results than when mutual support for the team, diligence, and cooperation are promoted.

Think of it as an example. The leader declares that who completes the task 100% will be rewarded. At that moment, the competition will develop among workers and everyone will want to get that reward. People stop helping each other and are pleased when their colleagues' have problems because they have a better chance of getting a reward. A good mood is deteriorating, and those workers who fail to be as efficient as the others are demotivated and do not even want to try. There are rumors, envy, and sometimes even sabotaging others.

Competition among colleagues is not bad, but rather in the fun

It is nonsensical to promote competitiveness in the workplace. A much better and more beneficial option is to try to consolidate the team, provide them with some extra benefits, support teambuilding and spend time together outside of work. There, they can get their competitiveness out in a fun way. For example, you can let your team play bowling or some interesting and adventure Treasure Hunt game (GPS-based team building game) and so on. Because only motivated employees are effective employees.