Competition

Elevate? or breakdown? the human standards…..

In this article I’m planning to talk and expand your views on what this so called competition is and how it affects badly for oneself and finally, to the community as a whole. When talking about competition, there’s obviously 2 types, the good and the bad type. I’ll be talking about the good type later on in this article. Until then, lets discuss about the harvest the bad type of competition brings. Also, what I’ll be emphasizing on in this article, is an experiment that was carried out, linking countries to their road rage incidents and road accidents per year.

Imagine a normal day in Sri Lanka. Visualize the situation on the road. What comes to mind? bad blood between pedestrians and the drivers, huge traffic creating disputes in between drivers, and the final outcome of all of these combined…. road accidents. What if I told you guys that the 5th grade scholarship exam indirectly affects the above incident and also the entire Sri Lankan community as a whole? What if I told you guys that the conflicts, disputes and a lot of stuff like these can be minimized if we Sri Lankans didn’t have such an exam? Let me explain this mindboggling fact.

Any child going from Montessori to Pre School and then the grade schools, has no idea of competition in mind. He/she enjoys life to the maximum with no so called tasks or responsibilities dragging him/her down. But when they get to Grade 5, the entire story changes. These children are fed the idea that, they have to definitely score a 185+(or whatever the mark is) to get to a good school and all of that blasphemy. They get dragged to a million classes and then this idea of competition begins in just the corner of their minds. The moment they get low marks, they get yelled at. Most parents ask them not how much they got, but whether they got the 1st placing in the class and all of that BS. To a kid, all of this is like a “thotiyata boogole wage” incident. They don’t get to experience life the way an actual child should. They start off their lives with competition and don’t forget… this ain’t the good type of competition.

Now some of you might be wondering as to how the international school children get connected to the above scenario. Brace yourselves ’cause this ride is gonna have a twist. Remember those gr10 and gr11 classes at Sigma, Shakthi. Etc? Remember how hard it was to even get on par with the kids from government schools? That’s where the story starts for the kids from international schools. I remember from my personal experience, it was frigging hard to get even close to those dudes. The reason? We weren’t bottle-fed competition and we were already 5yrs behind them ( from gr5 scholarship to gr.10 class ). But all of a sudden, we get dragged into that same group too. Parents, class teachers, school teachers and almost everyone in the education industry whipped us to get a taste of competition and forced us to love it. So in other terms, by the end of gr.10 we were all in the same boat. Hold on… it doesn’t stop there. Then comes our Ordinary Level results…. Some pass with flying colors, some pass with okay results and others fail. Now comes A/L’s…. The only exam on earth forcing the elephant, the fish, the bird, and the monkey to swim…. This is where competition reaches its peak. Just like O/L’s, same story in short… 4yrs into the future, they deliver a group of students who are educated…. but overflowing with competition.

Now let’s get to the main point. How the hell does all of this affect the road accidents and conflicts and all????

Lets breakdown the above said issues as a whole…. What if the driver in this car didn’t want to compete with the driver in the other car? What if the pedestrian waited patiently till the light turned green, to cross the road? What if the drivers had no issues like road rage or anything fueling them with all this anger? The competition which is fed to a child from their young stage, ripens and leads to more problems when they become adults because they always want to be the best, by hook or crook.

Lets bring down some stats now.(For the people still not seeing the point of this article). These stats are from Wikipedia.

Road Fatality rate per 100,000 people per year

The Americas-15.9

Europe-9.3

India-16.6

Sri Lanka-17.4

World-17.4

See my point? India and Sri Lanka are the 2 countries in Asia having the toughest exams worldwide(China has a bizarre 26.6 because of their population crisis and several other reasons). The stats speak for themselves.

Crimes, murders, assassinations. Etc are some other examples because of bad competition. People of our generation have a tendency to be on top no matter what. They weren’t taught to accept both victory and defeat in the same spirit. They compete to win, but not to learn from their mistakes and to have a better comeback the next time. That is one major reason why we have politicians, celebrities. Etc who do not know when to stop, because competition doesn’t stop there. It leads to jealousy, greed, desire. Etc.

I am going to wind up my article by explaining the good type of competition. The good type is self competition. When Usain Bolt was asked how he managed to achieve his record time of 9.58s in 2009, his reply was that he competed with himself. He competed with his own record time of 9.69 at the 2008 Olympics. That is what a true winner does. Look at yourself in a mirror, that’s is your true competition. Not someone else. The reason? Only you can do better than yourself. Only then will you have achieved true victory. There’s a million ways to enjoy false victories… but the satisfaction you receive by the victory of a self competition, is victory in its purest form.

I don’t think Sri Lanka will ever get rid of scholarship exams or O/L’s or A/L’s and to be honest, I don’t want them to. Eka witharai apita #1 thanak ganna deyakin ithuru wela thiyenne😂✌… All jokes aside, it has its plus points too. But I’ve got one request for you guys. Please teach your children this. Please teach them the good habit of competing with themselves and not with others. That is the only way we can make them good, wholesome individuals before presenting them to the society.

“If you continuously compete with others, you become bitter. If you continuously compete with yourself, you become better”

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WRITINGS OF AN OPTIMIST

Writing with the sole intention of getting people to see the world in a better way