I’ve been thinking about competitiveness.
I wonder when it is helpful and when it is harmful. What are the side effects, benefits, drawbacks?
Winning a race, earning the highest mark on an exam, getting a job offer, gaining recognition for excellence – all these laurels come to those who can compete, with the grit, stamina, and inner strength to finish first or be the last one standing. Good qualities, right?
Sometimes less overt, but nonetheless ever-present, an undercurrent of competitiveness seeps into parenting, writing, body shapes and images, career choices, cars, houses, neighborhoods, schools.
Why this urge to measure and compare? What does it serve? What does it make possible? What does it prevent?
How does competitiveness shape us? What does it make us willing to risk? What does it make us unwilling to dare?
As a fan of Brené Brown, I wonder about the relationship between competitiveness and vulnerability.
Readers and writers, what are your views on this? I would so appreciate hearing other perspectives on this shadow topic. Leave a comment or a link to your own thoughts – perhaps we can start a conversation.
With open ears,