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Why You Need a Rival - The Basics of a Healthy Competition

by Dr. Enozia Vakil on  April 8, 2013 at 12:06 PM Lifestyle and Wellness   - G J E 4
It's a competitive world out there, where everyone, right from school going kids to top business tycoons are struggling to get to the top. The cut-throat competition, the stress and the peer pressure can sometimes be crippling, often ending up in worse scenarios making headlines in the tabloids.
Why You Need a Rival - The Basics of a Healthy Competition
Why You Need a Rival - The Basics of a Healthy Competition
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But studies suggest that a healthy competition may actually be good for you. Surprised? Read on to know the inside story.

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The science behind: The brain works in an amazing way when exposed to healthy competition, specifically co-operative competition. Unlike direct competition, where there is definitely a loser, and it often ends in lower productivity, anger, insecurity and stress, co-operative competition, wherein a team works together, the brain releases chemicals that enhance bonding, pleasure and motivation.

If team strives together to achieve the set goal, the brain internally desires the feel-good-chemicals; the endorphins, which further motivates the individuals of the team and increases their productivity. This kind of inner motivation is extremely beneficial as it is inner motivation that drives people to reach greater heights.

This is true in case of kids too, so the next time you compare your kid's score with his friend's, think again, and instead, encourage team work and group studies.

Quotes to remember: It's not just the science; many famous people have quoted healthy competition to be one of the major driving forces towards success, all tried and tested.

Authors of the bestselling NutureShock: New Thinking about Children, Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman buried themselves into decades of research and studies, all on psychology, genetics and neuroscience to shed light to more about how humans respond to pressure.

Their argument in their new book Top Dog: The Science of Winning and Losing stating that competition is crucial, regardless of an individual's performance, validates the fact even further.

Put it to use: Healthy competition is a must to excel, and it's best when started from home. Authors of the book Top Dog: The Science of Winning and Losing have put down these tips for a better healthy competition that may help you succeed.

Narrow down your opponents. It's best when you stick to one or two close, manageable opponents, which makes your target achievable and boosts your confidence levels.

Start from home, be it a simple video game or a political discussion. People are more successful when they have the home-field advantage.

Play to win, not to avoid losing. Trying to avoid losing actually makes you more prone to committing mistakes. 

Source: Medindia
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