Competitive This...

In the last month or so, I've been called competitive by three different people, all of whom I regard highly, and tonight, while trying to study, my brain will not let go of a rant on the subject, so I'll spell it out here to quit dwelling on it.
I don't consider myself competitive. I don't see myself as having a drive to win. I think it is different from the drive to do well. One of the reasons it bothers me that people think I do have this drive is because in order to win, there must also be a loser. I don't want other people to be losers. (OK, I do, but very rarely. I'm only human, after all.)
So how do I disprove being competitive? I have pondered this. The only thing I can come up with is -- Lose.
So, you're right folks. I was wrong. I'm the most competitive damn S.O.B. you ever met. Face me over the game board and quiver in your boots. If I don't win, ain't nobody happy. So just leave me alone and compete with someone else.

Hmmm... that's karma for you. I write a pissy post and get mad at one of the cats for knocking stuff off the desk and now I feel terribly guilty. Nothing like hurting an animal or a child to make one feel incredibly small.

OK, not convinced? Here we go:
Dictionary.com says:
com·pet·i·tive 3. having a strong desire to compete or to succeed.
Well, I admitted above that I want to do well and one of dictionary.com's definitions of
suc·ceed: 2. to thrive, prosper, grow, or the like
I do have a strong desire to thrive, prosper, grow, or the like, which means you're right, Anne = competitive.
I realize that by protesting this labelling, I am potentially insulting everyone who is proud of the fact that they are competitive. I don't like it when applied to myself, but there are several people I know who carry it off fine. (There are also several I know who take it to uncomfortable extremes, but assume you're not one of them.) Think of it this way: if you're offended, then I win, so do your damnedest to not be. :P


Janiece said...


I'm a bit competitive, too, but in the same way you are - I just want to the "best," but I don't want other people to "lose."

Unknown said...

I like that one of the categories under which you listed the "competitive or not competitive" rant was "reasons I want to be a hermit." :-)

Anne C. said...

It's something I think fairly often, so I figured I'd just start a running tally. :)

Mummy Grabill said...

People often tell me I'm competitive. I used to think of it as a bad thing - but now I just accept it. I identify with one of the definitions you found - that it's the desire to do well. In that case, I would hope everyone is competitive. If not, well then, I'm better than you at doing well. :-p