self made man

“Remember that in the moment you begin to hurry you cease to be a creator and become a competitor; you drop back upon the old plane again.”

-Wallace D. Wattles

When we are young we begin measuring our own accomplishments against our peers. This competition forces us to do one of two things – attack or retreat. This is the old “fight or flight” adage that we are all accustomed to hearing. When we know we are being measured against others we develop a competitiveness, or a drive to beat others.

Economic competition, in a free-market, creates a culture of progress. Only the strongest survive. Businesses compete, driving prices down while quality and service increase. This means that consumers win. If a consumer is being taking advantage of, a competitor steps in and wins that business over – with either a better price, better service, or both.

Competition is great on a macro level. It provides a system of checks and balances. It ensures progress because if you (or your company) is not providing value, somebody else will. You have to improve to stay competitive (see what I did there?), or your business ends up with a big “For Sale” sign on the front door.

Competition has provided tons of opportunities in this country and it serves an incredibly important purpose. There are different forms of competition. When businesses compete to make better products and create innovate new solutions, everybody wins. In a lot of senses though, competition is a form of small thinking. When you are “competing” with the business next door, your energy is focused externally. You are worried what your competitor is doing more than you are worried about yourself and your own business.

Competition, on a micro level, is the equivalent of stealing answers off of the person’s test next to you. Most businesses have competitors that they imitate on some level. Imitation is taking a large percentage of somebody else’s idea and making a small alteration, or improvement. When most of your energy is directed towards imitation, you lose an important internal connection with your own originality. You cease being a Creator and become a Competitor.

To be a true Creator you have to believe one thing – you have to believe in the infinite power you possess. You have to believe in what Think and Grow Rich calls “Infinite Intelligence”, which basically means that you can access the solution to any problem in the universe by looking internally. When you are focused externally on what everybody else is doing, you are not looking internally at the solutions you already possess. You are not quite believing in yourself. You believe that somebody else possesses knowledge or skills that you do not. You are succumbing to the all too common disease of small-thinking.

Competitors believe in limitations. They believe that there are a finite number of resources, opportunities and wealth in this world that we all must share. We all must compete for a fixed number of opportunities. In this limited world, wealth cannot actually be created. Creation does not really exist – only marginal improvement upon existing ideas. New ideas take a backseat to the improvement of old ideas.

When you take the mindset of a Creator, the walls of limitation come crumbling down. You begin seeing everything as an opportunity. You focus on yourself, and the things you can control, and reconnect with your originality. When you stop worrying about what others are doing, you learn more about yourself. You discover the real opportunities that lie inside of you.

Everybody has a unique perspective of the world and the more you compete with others, the further you drift away from discovering your own originality. You take a step back in discovering your own internal superpowers, which is your greatest gift to this world. Stop competing and start creating. Believe in your internal power and worry less and less what everybody around you is doing. Only then, will you find your true originality and authenticity and become a Creator.