I’ve always been competitive. But I’m learning, that the competition is not external. The person I should keep trying to beat is myself.
What does winning against someone else mean if I know that I could have done better?
In the podcast Conversations with Tyler, Sam Altman says, “If you compete with other people, you end up in this mimetic trap, and you sort of play this tournament, and if you win, you lose.”
It’s a way of competing that I’ve never liked. When I was running my previous ecommerce business, this was how we saw the competition. It was a zero-sum game and was one of the reasons I didn’t like how the business was being conducted.
Even when we were “winning”, it felt like we were always looking behind.
I wanted better. I wanted more.
…if you’re competing with yourself, and all you’re trying to do is — for the own self-satisfaction and for also the impact you have on the world and the duty you feel to do that — be the best possible version you can, there is no limit to how far that can drive someone to perform.– Sam Altman
Because the thing is, if you’re constantly looking behind, how can you pull even further forward?