A little competition never hurt anyone right? Wrong…
While it’s completely natural for most people to feel a sense of competition here and there, it too often happens between friends. As a woman, its hard not to compare yourself to the other women around you. Unfortunately in my case, the women around me most also happen to be my best friends. Comparing things like clothes, beauty, hair, and style are really only minimalist, trivial things and usually aren’t enough to encourage actual competition.
But what do you do when the comparisons start to happen with bigger, more important components of life such as school or college applications? This is where it gets tricky. Meeting your best friends in college or university also means there is a high chance they are in the same program as you. While this can be a positive thing (having friends in your classes, sharing notes, having good partners for group projects), it can also be not so positive.
Going beyond the competition that comes with college applications, what do you do when you and your bestie also have the same dreams, goals, and career path? In this case, it becomes EXTREMELY hard not to get competitive.
Here are some examples of NORMAL thoughts that might go through your head:
- How could she apply to the same program as me, its MY dream not HERS.
- What if she gets in and I don’t?
- What if she becomes successful and I’m stuck waiting tables my whole life?
- What a b*tch.
Harsh? Not really.
The truth is, its hard not to feel a little competitive. I mean, we’re talking about the
rest of your life here.. ok, too dramatic, but you catch my drift. Here’s what to do when you’re feeling competitive with your bestie:
- Stop comparing yourself to her: You are two completely different people. Maybe your life long goals and dreams match up, but comparing what she has/does to what you have/do is only detrimental to your mental health and your friendship as well.
- Stop showboating: “Look how well I did on my paper!”, “Omg, my college interview went SO well”, “Look at how many job interviews I have!”. Stop. No one likes a bragger, especially your best friend. Throwing your accomplishments in your bestie’s face only fuels the fire and triggers more competition.
- Show Support: Yes. You read that right. I understand it may be hard to show support to the person you want to beat the most, but trust me when I say it’s worth it. If you have the same goals both academically and professionally, chances are (hopefully) you will both be successful in whatever endeavours you decide to pursue. So what’s the point in hoping for another’s failure just so you can succeed? This competitor of yours is your friend, and its your job to provide a support system.
So… bite your tongue, build her up, and be happy for not only yourself but your best friend as well.