Sunday, 28 May 2017

Harnessing that competitive streak

Do you have a competitive streak?

Some people are more competitive than others. Some people are competitive all the time and other people are competitive when it matters to them to be competitive. Does that make sense? It's good to win trivial pursuits (that's showing my age) but it isn't the be all and end all.

This morning, I saw this on my computer screen during the 2017 Crossfit Games Pacific Regional competition.

It was good to see a couple of New Zealand teams at the top of the leaderboard. It is also nice doing it away from home in Australia. My competitive streak came out and it was a good chance to have a good-natured dig at the Australians. Australians and New Zealanders have been sport-related rivals for a long time and it seemed natural for me to say something about it. No malice in it, just good old-fashioned rivalry.

Sometimes, having a competitive streak can be seen as a bad thing because it can lead to arrogance and although self-confidence is a good thing, arrogance is not. Arrogant people are not fun to be around and I don't want you to become one of them. I won't allow you to read this blog if you become an arrogant so and so.

What can you do to harness your competitive streak?

I can think of four things that you can do:

1. WHY?

Why are you doing what you are doing? You need to come up with reasons and when you have those reasons then you will find the motivation to go about and do what you want to do. Make sure that the reason you are doing it are not bad ones. For example, "I want to rub his nose in it." OR "I want to smash everyone in my way." Come on, you are better than that. You are not some Darth Vader type character. Motivate yourself by the thought of reaching some kind of goal.

2. What is your purpose?

This carries on from the WHY? question above. Remember what brought to this decision and this point in time. Remember why you are doing what you are doing and what you want to achieve in the end.

3. Work hard

By working hard, I really mean working smart. It is all very well putting in the hours but could you have done in 8 hours what took you 15 hours? I get told a lot, "I work hard" and that automatically means that they spent a long time at the office but when we break their 16 hour work day down, it sounds as though they really only worked for 3 hours. Work hard by all means but work smart as well.

4. Learn from your mistakes

When you f**k up there are two things that can happen:

     A. It could really get the better of you and make your life hell

     B. You could learn from it and make you life spectacular.

If you make that mistake, that is OK. You are human. That is what human beings do. Just make you sure that you don't make that mistake again. Learn from it and forge ahead. I remember when I made a mistake at work one time and my boss laughed at me. (I was expecting a telling off) He said that he had made that mistake before too. It was like it was a right of passage.

Being competitive is a good thing. Use that streak to improve the world and more importantly, yourself.

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