Prologue: I am learning how much I have to learn! It feels like no matter what I have discovered about myself, I still have a long way to go.
“Hello, my name is Jim and I am a competitor.” If that sounds like the start of an AA meeting to you, you are correct. The definition of competitive is having a desire to be more successful than others. There are times that it is okay to have some “friendly” competition. The problem with a great deal of competition is the last part of the definition. Sometimes, it comes at the expense of others. When we “need” to “beat” the other person, It ceases to be friendly.
We were playing some games yesterday as a family and in one particular game I was whooping everyone big time. It was obvious at the end of the game that I had won. I didn’t have to count my score, since it was so obvious. However, I counted my score anyway and shared the results with everyone.
Why did I do that? It appears a little like I was rubbing it in their faces, doesn’t it? I certainly hadn’t intended to do that. Again, a friendly game with “the fam” is supposed to have a winner. We can laugh and enjoy and congratulate the winner and move on to the next game. The fact that I had to make sure everyone knew the size of my victory was when I crossed the line.
I think when I do that, I am learning how much I need ego strokes. I understand on reflecting back, that those are times my self worth is still in doubt. I need to win so I can feel better about me.
I know I have improved dramatically in this competition arena but it is still something I have to face. I deal with it in terms of simple things like games and sports and more complex things like conversations about life. I know it is hard to believe, but when it comes to opinions about just about anything, I think I am right most of the time.
I have to get under the surface to the ultimate lie. Once I uncover it, it ceases to have power over me. I am worth it even when I lose! I don’t have to prove my value by winning a game or a debate. When I get that, I mean really get that, I can play with a freedom that allows me to “compete” while not crossing the line to the dark side. I can enjoy it even when the other person wins.
Anyone up for a game?