How To Rock On Being A Competitor

As I stand in awe looking at the other semi-finalists for TEDx Lady Bird Lake, I could not help but suffer from comparisonitis. A curable disease often affecting ordinary, healthy individuals characterized by comparing your own achievements against others and asking yourself why you have not accomplished this or that when so and so have been able to check it off.

Anybody can be a great photographer if they zoom in enough on what they love. — David Bailey

Most of us tackle competition in our daily lives within various contexts. I compete with my daughter who gets to do something the fastest when I am trying to motivate her to action on a task I want her to complete. I compete with my husband in learning a skill, particularly involving sports as I am the least person (between the two of us) to learn activities such as snowboarding, mountain biking or rollerblading. My genetic makeup does not predetermine me to be athletic yet I was able to nurture myself to aspire to become an athlete.

The ugly side of competition is when we look at others more, what they were able to achieve or do rather than focusing on the things we excel at and unique to our situation. At this time, we forget to appreciate our strengths and more likely dwell on our flaws even more.

Competition drives us to perform at our peak level. This is why team activities such as group classes work for most people! We love being part of a community, being able to contribute, the accountability, and most of all, be an active participant for everyone’s success.

Focusing on something we love builds confidence and when we feel confident, we can walk with a little more swagger. We know that “we got this” if something is thrown at us because we are fully aware on how to react to the situation.

Social media has a funny way of causing that tiny crack that could either make or break our self- confidence. In our attempt to connect, we become disconnected from our own realities. We watch other people’s highlights and forget that this is just a glimpse of someone else’s life. As the saying goes, there’s more than what meets the eye. A person’s success rarely transpire overnight. It is the grand sum of all the actions that person took compounded over time.

As I reflect on my thoughts and reactions to this curable disease called comparisonitis . I set myself with the following contract:

(1) Take the time to bless others on their own journey. Learn from others if you must. Some of them have been to the place you are trying so hard to reach. In due time, you will also be rewarded.

(2) Focus on what you love, what you are good at and how you want to show up to the world. What you focus on grows.

(3) Don’t underestimate the power of community building. People will always remember how you made them feel. Let others experience a sense of belonging.

(4) Learn to unplug from social media before reaching your saturation point. Be quick to recognize your triggers and step away as needed.