Competing with Oneself; Sure Way to Succeed in Life

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You have competition every day because you set such high standards for yourself that you have to go out every day and live up to that. - Michael Jordan

Competition has been the buzz word wherever you go. Day in and day out, we are engaged rather in a rivalry race trying to outsmart others to achieve success in life, maybe, at times without knowing what that success really means to us in terms of a sense of fulfilment or a feeling of happiness. Many a times, the competition is so cut throat that we find it very difficult to cope up with the situation.

In our eagerness and compulsion to succeed by hook or by crook, we fail to understand that each individual has his own weaknesses and strengths, potential and capacity to perform. When no two persons are biologically similar, how can they be same and similar in delivering the same results, when subjected to undergo some test or the other in day to day life? Please enjoy and emulate what this famous proverb conveys: “There is nothing noble about being superior to some other person. The true nobility is in being superior to your previous self.”

Though we know, yet forget to appreciate in practice that every individual is a unique entity having diverse levels of knowledge and skills. As such, the competition always is fundamentally with ‘self’ to become better and to enjoy the fruits of improved productivity by getting the grammar of life right.

There are thousands of examples of great and successful personalities, past and present both, from different fields of activities, who proved by their own making that self- improvement is a sure way to achieve both success and happiness in life.

Nobody can deny or dispute the fact that every improvement starts with 'I' and to ensure that to happen, the first step to embark upon is to undertake an objective self - ‘SWOT’ analysis. Here, as you might know, 'S' stands for Strength, 'W' for Weakness, 'O' for Opportunity and 'T' for Threat. You must jot down on a piece of paper your present status in respect of all the four parameters. Then, make reasonable assessment of your capacity to perform to the optimum level for consolidating and then improving the positives and for diminishing the negatives with a well-formulated strategy and action plan to move towards your own goal of life. In Gautam Buddha's golden words, "Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back and choose the path that leads to wisdom."

Learning and acting for improving one's own performance should be a continuous process, that is to say, competing on regular basis with your own old self for definite value addition. So, as Howard Cosell rightly says, “The ultimate victory in competition is derived from the inner satisfaction of knowing that you have done your best and that you have gotten the most out of what you had to give.”


milan sinhamilan sinhaMilan K. Sinha is a freelance writer. He has worked in Banking and Insurance sector for three decades following three years of active writing in various newspapers and magazines. Presently he is engaged in stress management, wellness and awareness activities besides freelance writing. He is based in Patna and can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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