Compete against yourself not others

I have recently learned that you need to compete against yourself not others, whether it is in business or individually. I have always been of the belief that we should not worry about what others might be thinking of you but to believe in yourself. However along the way I have been guilty of this and sometimes it is hard to get those thoughts out of my head. I’m not saying that you should ignore what others may say, as I strongly believe you should always take everything on board with an open mind but, you should believe in what you believe in.

A recent example of realising that I need to compete against myself has been in playing football for Dunnstown. I have always just headed along to training, listened to the coach and my peers and tried the best I can, well what I thought was my best. Previously I was always worried about what others thought of me, as I believe I do not have the best skills, nor the best decision making process with the football in hand and I feel I am less than confident. When I started to change my mindset from worrying about being better than the person next to me (which was nearly impossible as I kept telling myself I was terrible) to being better than I was last session or game, I have noticed an improvement.

I now take notes at the end of the day stating what I achieved for the day, what I need to improve on and what I learnt in all areas of life, which seems to be helping me stay focused with what is important so I can be better tomorrow.

Following on with ‘The “Why” in business’

I revisit one of my earlier post The ‘Why’ where we touched on the topic of how important is to have a clear vision and to get people to believe in what you believe in. We continue to look at our competitors, colleges, friends and families and concentrate on how to be better than them. What we should be concentrating on is “how we can be better today than what we were yesterday”.

If you set your “WHY” to be inspiring to others and have them believe in what you believe in this will set you apart from your competitors and therefore allowing you to concentrate on competing against yourself. I do not think we should ignore our competitors but I do believe we should be looking at them for ideas, systems, techniques, procedures etc… to help move forward in the best possible way.ID-10050789

Inspiration in Ben Comen – Cross Country Runner

Simon Sinek author of ‘Start with Why’ used a great inspirational story about a cerebral palsy athlete named Ben Comen. Ben was lining up to compete in a cross country running race alongside athletes who were fit and ready to go. The gun went off. From the outset Ben was not able to keep up with the group. Throughout the race he continued to fall over, bruising, scratching and hurting his body. The main group of athletes finished the 3.1 mile race in 20 minutes however Ben was still going. An amazing sequence of events unfolded when most of the competitors in the race who had finished went back to run the rest of race with Ben. Not only running with him but when Ben crosses the line every single person in the crowd is cheering him on. Ben does not compete in the race to win, he competes in the race to beat his last time. This example shows us that when we compete against others no one else is inspired to help you succeed but if you are competing against yourself, everyone wants to help you succeed.

In to Practice

Ben Comen is just one example where we need to concentrate on competing against ourselves rather than worry about our opposition. Sure, we should be aware of what others are doing but to improve ourselves, we need to concentrate on being better than what we were yesterday. Making clear set goals and continuing to evaluate your process is critical to staying on path.

We should also not be worried about competing against our competitors with our products and services but rather worry about being better tomorrow than what we are today. By having your “WHY” in place you will automatically be different to your competitors, as long as those involved in your business believe in your “WHY”.

Watch a video on Ben Comen inspirational story at

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