We so misunderstand the meaning of this word. If we use it to mean we want to get the zenith of performance from ourselves and the experience of it, then it is used in a wise context.
But competitiveness is indiscriminate, it can help you or harm you depending on how you apply it and how you live it. In our minds we can put ourselves into the hall of fame or the hall of shame, neither is particularly helpful, both are forms of judgment.
We are told competition is necessary, in order to push us, that it’s healthy, but like everything competition has a dark side. It can go bad and fester like a boil on your butt if you don’t apply a healthy dose of self awareness to it.
If it is used in the context of jealously, envy, comparisons, outcomes, resentment, greed or judgment both inwardly and outwardly then the competitiveness is working against us, it is certainly not serving us.
We may view competitiveness as a healthy requirement, but unchecked it can lead us down a road of constant dissatisfaction, it can ruin ones sense of peace and make you lose your ground, and from there it’s impossible to be at your best.
If we chart a course of comparing ourselves to others we end up off our natural athletic path, at best we end up trying to follow someone else’s path, we then lose the uniqueness and the talents that hide in our own potential.
There is a real danger in the envy of wanting to emulate the success someone else has, it projects us outward into a world of fantasy, illusion and constant dissatisfaction.
Success most often comes when an athlete starts to follow and chart the direction of their unique path, that’s where people move from good to great.
Following the movement of the mob doesn’t work, because the mob are for the most part dysfunctional.
Athletes work great together until one starts to thrive, that’s where the paint starts to peel off the walls. If you train in a group you know this as truth to some degree. The passive aggressive nature of some groups is hard to miss, it’s not something you think, it’s an energy you can feel.
It gets very difficult to hold the ground with patience if there is envy and jealousy. Patience is what you need, everyone develops at different rates, a slow starter can end up a world champion if they have enough patience, inner will and desire.
You can’t find inner will and desire by projecting to the others around you. It’s an internal drive that creates the magic conditions for true success, we spend too much time trying to find it outside.
I know what you are thinking, ‘oh no that’s not me’ but just explore the truth in yourself and your athletic journey, see if you find an ugly little green eyed monkey lurking in the shadows, because that monkey is stealing your potential.
When someone else wins or thrives explore what’s going on in your inner world, there’s a big difference between feeling inspired and feeling envy.
It’s ok if it sets you on fire and puts you in touch with your own will and desire, but if it harbours resentment, trust me it’s a seriously corrosive element that will only move you into self judgment.
It’s not about them, it is never about them, it’s about you and only you.
We really need to get competitiveness into the right context. If we allow it competition has no end, no finish line, there is always someone better, seemingly more talented. But if you really look into it you will see that this is all just thought and thinking.
Comparison has no natural end because it has no existential reality to it, other than the self judgment that is invading the space that you are trying to get the best out of yourself in.
Competition can make a real mess of your life if you allow it, no result will ever be good enough and nothing you do will ever be good enough, your whole life can disappear down a rabbit hole of competitiveness.
Life itself is not a competition, no one who makes it so can ever be happy, because they will never find contentment or completion.
If we live in a place of comparison always reaching for more there is no end to it, there can be no sense of inner peace or happiness.
The more you feed it, the more it eats. The big question is, who is it that is doing the eating? Is it you or is it ego?
Remember that little ugly green monkey I was talking about earlier? His name is ego and he is not interested in your experience, he is only interested in what it looks like.
We look at champions and imagine their rosy life and it’s just total bullshit, if they don’t know the core of their existence, they are just as miserable as the rest of society, possibly even more lost, looking outward into the world of more and more.
Be careful of what you wish for. Success can be a torrid mistress when you get there only to find it void of meaning.
What it looks like and what it is are two different things.
You have to look at the end point, what is it that I am trying to achieve?
If you ask yourself this question authentically you will get the answer that the achievement is in the pure experience of it.
It makes absolutely no difference if we are weekend warriors or world champions, the experience is the experience and that folks is all there is.
From this place you can work effectively with your inner will and desire to find out what “your” inner experience is capable of.
Live your best life by living it authentically, find your truth, get in touch with inner will and desire and light your own fuse.